Fossil keeps pace with Apple Watch as it adds contactless payment and GPS to its Q collection of smartwatches

Fossil has described its 2018 Fossil Q family as the fourth generation of its smartwatch evolution, with additional functionality including heart rate tracking NFC-enabled payments and GPS connectivity directly from the watch, and waterproofing for swimmers.

Charging has also been improved, so that an hour of recharging will keep the watch working all day.

Fossil Group, which also produces smartwatches for Michael Kors and Emporio Armani, has closed the gap on Apple Watch with its 2018 Fossil collection, and added most features of fitness trackers into a fashionable timepiece.

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“Since our entry to the smartwatch market, it has always been our first priority to be nimble and adapt quickly to innovations-both in technology and design,” says Steve Evans, EVP of Fossil.

“We know a lot of watch wearers have both a traditional watch and some kind of an activity tracker — by adding significant features in terms of technology, without compromising our design standards, this new generation of smartwatch will provide consumers with one device that fits all of their needs. Ensuring the best possible experience for our customers has always been important, which drove the innovation of this product; we cannot wait to see the consumer response around the globe,” he adds.

The watch, which hit retail at the end of August, has an almost limitless choice of styles thanks to interchangeable straps and more than 36 styles of touchscreen dials. Or customers can use social media photos as watch face backgrounds.

Giving the watches connectivity directly to the GPS network means people can leave their phones and fitness trackers at home, while apps like Google Fit automatically map and track location and distance during workouts.

They can even monitor swimming sessions now that the watches have been made waterproof.

The watches come in two sizes: Fossil Q Venture is 40mm while the Q Explorist is 45mm.

The collection runs Wear OS by Google, which is compatible with Android and Apple devices.

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