tag heuer

LVMH watch chief Jean-Claude Biver announced today that its popular luxury watch line TAG Heuer is pushing ahead with plans for a smartwatch. At a press conference in Switzerland this morning, the executive admitted he had dismissed the threat of wearables, but recently had a change of heart.

“We started on the project about four months ago,” Biver told journalists. “We have done several partnerships and might also do acquisitions.” Google and Intel are among those rumored to be working with TAG on its smartwatch, which is believed to feature both mechanical actions and digital sensors.

The announcement comes as the highly anticipated debut of the Apple Watch looms. Biver has publicly lambasted the device, saying it “looks too feminine” and that it was “designed by a student.” It’s clear, though, that his company is taking it and the slew of other high-profile smartwatches very seriously.

“Smartwatches represent a challenge to the Swiss watch industry that is comparable to the appearance of quartz technology,” said TAG’s newly appointed general manager Guy Semo. “We cannot ignore this tsunami that is coming closer.” He declined to elaborate further on the watch-maker’s digital plans.

Interestingly enough, Jony Ive predicted the tsunami back in September, before the Apple Watch was officially unveiled. Hinting at the widely rumored smartwatch project, the designer told The New York Times’ Nick Bilton that Switzerland was in trouble, although Nick says he used much bolder terms.

The Apple Watch is slated to launch early next year, with a starting price of $349. TAG Heuer is expected to introduce its smartwatch in late 2015.

[Reuters]

  • Chris Tangler

    the watch pictured above, now thats a good lookin watch!!!

    • springer85

      Yeah for a whopping price tag of $10000 is ludicrous!!!
      The lower end of the Apple Watch does a hundred more and better things that the Watch pictured above!
      Hilarious how Biver has suddenly now changed his mind about the Apple Watch!
      He is actually bricking it and why they have rushed to make a new wearable!
      People bragged the 6 Plus would not sell and it made them look complete tools!
      The same people who brag the Apple Watch will not sell are hilarious!
      Biver really knows how much of a threat the Apple Watch really is and why he started the new project.
      The $10000 watch above just tells time,stop watch,date and time etc Which is a joke for the asking price.

      • Chris Tangler

        That watch, just like how the iPhone use to be, is a status symbol (a beautiful one at that). my wife and i do very well for ourselves on the financial front, but i could never justify paying more than 1k for a watch. I currently have a bulova that retails for around 550, and currently think that’s a lot for a watch. I understand the appeal of the apple watch (iWatch), but sorry, don’t see the practicality of it. Seems more gimmicky than anything. And next year your going to want the next iteration of it (kinda like going from i5 to i5s or i6). My Bulova, I’ll have it for a long time.

        By the way, you mentioned people think the apple watch won’t sell. Who is saying that? Of course it’s going to sell. It’s an apple product. Until apple drops off the earth, people are going to buy their products, all of them!!!

      • SMH

        $10000 and no diamonds? Die please.

      • Rak S

        People don’t buy watches like that because of “what they do…” If that’s what you think, you’re completely missing the point. A beautiful watch is (mind the pun) timeless. Its a piece of jewellery that (may) convey something about you… an image, a style, etc. Every body has a phone, so no-one buys something like this, for that purpose alone. Additionally, for guys, there are’s many items of jewellery that you can get away with wearing, without looking like an ancient rocker or a “bling-bling” rapper.
        Finally, a watch can be a very good investment. I bought one for £2500 6 years ago. A new one now costs £5500, and mine’s a limited edition too.
        As an apple fan, your accusations are a bit silly… You’re basically using the same narrative that Samsung uses to describe Apple, not to mention that the Apple watch looks ugly as sin.

      • @dongiuj

        Perfectly said.

      • springer85

        LMFAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
        Phones were ORIGINALLY ONLY MADE TO MAKE CALLS!!
        Today’s phones do so much more, make calls, make Facetime calls, search the web, check emails,take 1080p videos, 240 fps slo mo videos, pay for goods using the NFC chip inside etc!!
        The same with watches like the ones above they were ORIGINALLY designed to tell the time and date THAT’S IT!!!!
        You say the Apple Watch looks ugly?LMFAO TYPICAL SAMESUNG GUZZLER ALERT!!
        The Apple Watch stainless steel 48mm with Milanese loop looks a HUNDRED times better than the crammed face one above!!
        The watch above has bricked size buttons and the face is massive that on the wrist it looks so bad that it is hilarious!
        Biver changing his mind and the fact that for the last 4 months they have been working on a wearable themselves doing a complete u turn prove how much he really is bricking it!
        The watch above just tells the time and date like WOW!!LOL
        Apple watch, tells time, weather, can check emails, send and receive calls, voice integration, GPS Maps navigation, fitness tracker, heart rate monitor, take photos, send and receive text messages, and all in one device for just $250!!!
        If Biver did not think the Apple watch was a threat then he NEVER would have done an hilarious u turn and has been working for the last 4 months on an Apple Watch rival!!
        LMFAO!!!!

      • Rak S

        Hmmm… Logic seems to escape you once again!
        You’re taking about functions again, not the beauty, history, quality and prestige of a handmade Swiss watch.

        Ive owned several Apple products over the years (rMBP, iP6, iPad, et,) and I’m a fan, but not blindly so.
        NFC… LOL! Are you really going to make that argument after Sumsung implemented that tech a year ago? How often do you use 240fps video? They’re gimmicks, and nothing more. You want to check your email on your watch, when your phone is in your pocket, be my guest.
        Functions, clock speed, etc are part of samsung’s mantra, and you’re reciting them like that’s really part of Apple’s ethos? Oh, the irony!

        The Apple watch is ugly. The UI is the only semi-interesting thing about it, at this stage.
        You’re even attributing features to the watch that it doesn’t have! There’s no GPS, and without carrying an iPhone in tow, All you have is a (SHOCK HORROR) Watch with not much functionality at all!!! How will you read those emails 😉

        Could they improve it? Sure.

        Will a lot of people buy it? Sure.
        Is it anywhere near as intricate, beautiful, historical and prestigious as a nice swiss timepiece? I don’t even need to answer that question.

      • Chris Tangler

        great comment!! springer85 honestly seems like someone that’s just here to promote apple products and shame anything else. I love apple products. Heck, i have a 17″ MBP that i have put an additional 1k into from stock. i5, iPad 3, original black MB from first run 2006 (still works btw). That’s just what i have, let alone what my wife has, and rest of my family.

        also, how does someone not know and see what a very nice watch (non-smart watch) is. It’s a piece of mens jewelry that’s also a status symbol. My bulova was only 500 and people all the time ask me about it!! Also, comment below said this watch is actually around $3500. I’d pay that for the above pictured TAG and wouldnt pay more than $150 for an apple watch.

      • Rak S

        Precisely!
        And another thing I failed to mention, classic watches can become heirlooms… The kind of thing that you hand down to your son…
        A friend on mine got given his grandfather’s vintage Rolex just before his grandfather passed away… That’s a 50 year old watch! To even try to make a comparison between something like that, and a piece of tech that will be obsolete in 18 month is completely non-sensical!

      • Chris Tangler

        exactly. Best part about a Rolex is no matter who you are, you know what it is. I’d love a Rolex (or any watch, im not picky) from my grandfather. Plus, you can buy a 2014 Rolex and if that model existed 50 years ago, they basically are identical. Rolex, is a timeless piece of art/jewelry that extends multiple generations. There is a reason so many companies copy them. How many companies are copying apple products? Obviously they exist, but nothing to the same extent as a Rolex.

      • Chris Tangler

        so your saying that if I don’t like every single product that apple produces, im a “samesung guzzler”….youre a freaking joke. That statement alone makes you look like an uneducated 15 year old.

      • Sunil Chawla

        I’m not sure where you got the $10,000 price tag from. This particular model should retail for around $3,500.

      • springer85

        And is a TOTAL RIP OFF al it does is tell the time and date like WOW!
        The Apple Watch can integrate with Apple Iphones.
        The Tag wearable is going to be so bad it is hilarious!

      • Sunil Chawla

        I agree that the Tag smart watch will probably not compare to Apple’s in terms of functionality and ease of use.

        Whether or not luxury watches are a rip-off or not is another debate which has been done to death!

      • Chris Tangler

        so, i’m guessing you work for apple. probably nothing major, just an apple store rep.

  • @dongiuj

    I have no need for a “smartwatch” but if you’re going to make one Tag Heuer then please don’t make it as fugly as apple’s or any other company’s for that matter.
    “Switzerland is in trouble”…. I like you Ive, you’re funny.

  • It has begun…the premium Swiss watchmakers feeling the threat from Cupertino

    • Chris Tangler

      no way. The people that buy smart watches aren’t the same as people buying the TAG pictured above. Even the few that do fall into the same category, buying a smartwatch isn’t going to stop these people from buying the above watch.

  • TechLove

    “looks too feminine”, “designed by a student”…

    I think he didn’t got a hands on session with the watch.

  • Sunil Chawla

    Tag Heuer is seen as ‘low end’ in Swiss watch circles, so this news does not surprise me. You will never see the likes of Patek Philippe, IWC or JLC producing a smart watch, mark my words.

    While I believe smart watches will be successful, I don’t think traditional watches are going anywhere anytime soon.

    • Chris Tangler

      The thing is though that those Swiss Watch makers you chose to list are all very high end. The average consumer can’t afford but maybe one watch from each company. Cheapest watch being around 9k. That being said, you get what you pay for when it comes to watches. I totally agree that traditional/mechanical watches arent going anywhere soon at all!!

      • Sunil

        Indeed, that’s why I mentioned those companies specifically.

        There are reports saying that the gold Apple Watch models will be upwards of $3000. They will therefore directly compete with the likes of Tag Heuer in this price bracket. I’m guessing that is why Tag is feeling threatened. Whereas I doubt Patek et al will be affected. Anyone who is in the market for a $20k watch will not even consider an Apple Watch!