Swatch plans payment-enabled smartwatch

Swatch plans payment-enabled smartwatch

Swatch is to launch an Internet-enabled smartwatch featuring mobile payment functionality in the next two to three months.

The Swiss watchmaker, whose brands include Tissot, Longines and Omega watches, is looking to counter the effect of the recent spike in the country's currency on its financials and ward off the threat from Apple, which is expected to roll out its own smartwatch in April.

The company has built up an impressive array of patents and technology over the years, packing its regular timepieces with innovative gadgets and features such as touchscreens, compasses and altimeters. It may also have the edge over Apple from its years of experience in developing long-life batteries - a potential pitfall for the power-hungry products from the Cupertino-based company.

The plans for the new product were alluded to by chief executive Nick Hayek in an interview with Bloomberg.

Swatch has reportedly signed deals with two of Switzerland's largest retailers, Migros and Coop, and is in talks with others over its payment system.

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