Nick Hayek (pictured), CEO of the Swatch Group, wants others to test consumer appetite for smart watches before the Swiss-based watch giant decides on which strategy to pursue.
“You won’t see us participating in a race of who’s going to introduce what first,” said Hayek in a Bloomberg interview. “There’s still big resistance from the consumer, so we’re going to wait.”
Hayek claimed Swatch was well-equipped to sell components to smart watch makers, and that was the plan for now. If smart watch demand picks up, however, the CEO maintained that Swatch could quickly muscle into the market with its own product. An extensive distribution network also helps.
“I believe in the smart watch, but not as a replacement for watches,” he added. “If a market for smart objects on the wrist really develops, then we’ll be there.”
Apple, reportedly looking to launch a smart watch in October, may well be a market catalyst.
The Cupertino giant has appeared slow to respond to Samsung, which has been developing its Galaxy Gear line. Sony, LG Electronics and Qualcomm are also active in the smart watch space.