Fossil Group has decided to call it quits on smartwatches.
The company announced this afternoon that it would leave the smartwatch business and redirect resources to its less-smart goods instead. The company has been one of the most prolific makers of Wear OS smartwatches over the years, and its absence will leave a large gap in the market.
“As the smartwatch landscape has evolved significantly over the past few years, we have made the strategic decision to exit the smartwatch business,” Jeff Boyer, Fossil executive vice President and chief operating officer, tells The Verge. “Fossil Group is redirecting resources to support our core strength and the core segments of our business that continue to provide strong growth opportunities for us: designing and distributing exciting traditional watches, jewelry, and leather goods under our own as well as licensed brand names.”
This means that the Gen 6, which first launched in 2021, will be the last Fossil smartwatch. Boyer says the company will continue to keep existing Wear OS watches updated “for the next few years.”
This shouldn’t come as a huge shock if you’ve been paying attention to Fossil the past few months. Some Reddit users had been reporting Fossil retail employees as saying Fossil was pulling out of the business, while others on the platform claiming “insider” knowledge said the company was waiting for a new chipset. The company regularly put out smartwatches through Wear OS’s toughest years and was often a permanent fixture at CES. However, the company was notably absent from the show earlier this month. What’s more, Fossil was expected to announce news of a new Gen 7 featuring the Qualcomm Snapdragon W5 Plus platform in 2023 — however, it was nothing but crickets the entire year. Well, now we know why.
Update, January 28th, 4:03PM ET: Updated name of Fossil source.