Wear OS has officially lost one of its biggest partners – Fossil is calling it quits on smartwatches powered by Google’s wearable platform.
Surprised to hear that? While no official word arrived until recent days, rumors have circulated for some time in the depths of reddit that Fossil may be planning an exit. The sources for that were shaky, but the company made the move a reality as we entered the weekend. A classic Friday news bury.
Fossil hasn’t made a new Wear OS watch since it launched the Fossil Gen 6 platform in 2021. They eventually made a Gen 6 Wellness Edition, but it lacked any real upgrades. It was mostly a refresh of an old watch in a new case, which Fossil often did with its current Wear OS wearables. The big sell was it having Wear OS 3 out of the box. Remember that drama?
We really haven’t had a new Fossil Wear OS watch in almost 2 years and there has been little chatter about a Fossil Gen 7. Fossil was eerily quiet about new smartwatches over the past year+, through holiday seasons and CES events, they just never told us anything new. Outside of a hybrid or two, incredibly slow rollouts of Wear OS 3 updates, you wouldn’t have been off to suggest that Fossil was looking for an exit.
After dropping remaining watch inventory to rock-bottom prices in recent months, and again with nothing new on the horizon, the writing was on the wall. I’ll have more to say soon as I gather my thoughts after the weekend, but even if you didn’t necessarily like Fossil’s watches, this feels a lot like a company who was pushed out by Google’s close relationship with Samsung. It’s unfortunate. We like having choices and right now, there aren’t many.
If it means anything to you, Fossil told The Verge that it would support its current watches “for the next few years.” We’ll see.