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Smartwatch Companies Try Focusing on Children

by SELINA WANG

[FULL ARTICLE]

7/22/14

With smart watches drawing lukewarm interest from consumers, some technology companies are trying a fresh approach: Market them to kids.

 

LG Electronics Inc., VTech Holdings Ltd. and Filip Technologies Inc. have all developed high-tech watches for children, undaunted by the slow progress the industry has made in pitching the devices to adults. They're betting that kids may be the ideal market for the gadgets, which can either keep tykes entertained or track their whereabouts. The watches can even teach a more old-fashioned skill: how to tell time.

 

While only about 1 in 5 grown-ups has interest in buying a smart watch, kids' models might be an easier sell, said Benjamin Arnold, an analyst at NPD Group Inc. They're typically cheaper, for one. And versions that can track children have obvious appeal to parents, who live in fear of losing small kids at a park or shopping mall. At the same time, the technology has drawn criticism for adding yet another electronic distraction.

 

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7/28/14

[FULL ARTICLE]

High End Watches:  Tell Me Why?!

by MARTIN GREEN

Ask somebody the time and instead of a flick of the wrist, you often see a quick grasp into a pocket to reveal a cell phone or other mobile device emerge to answer your question. What the quartz-crisis did for the mechanical watch, current days should do to watches in general and confirm once again the faith of the mechanical watch; they are DEAD!

 

Yet even with a slowed down economy in most parts of the Western world, the annual reports of the mighty luxury conglomerates show a different fate for watches, especially mechanical ones. Swatch Group reported an increase of sales over 2013 of 8.5%, totaling CHF 8.456 million, of which CHF 2.314 million is profit. Richemont, another luxury conglomerate heavy in the watch industry, reports similar findings (their financial year ends in March, so exact number weren’t available yet). So how can an industry that is supposed to be dead be so vibrant?

 

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