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TAG Heuer unveils $1,500 'Connected' smartwatch running Android Wear

By AppleInsider Staff

The Swiss watch industry fired its first significant shot across the Apple Watch's bow with the Monday revelation of TAG Heuer's Connected smartwatch, sporting a classic design, a titanium case, and a $1,500 price tag.

The "Connected" is modeled after TAG's famous Carrera watch, swapping the standard face out for a 1.5-inch circular LTPS LCD touchscreen display. It's sheathed in a nearly identical titanium case to its mechanical dopplegänger, and ships with a choice of colorful rubber straps.

The watchmaker has chosen to outfit the Connected with only a basic suite of sensors, including a gyroscope, tilt detection -- likely in the form of an accelerometer -- and microphone. Absent are advanced biological sensors, like a heart rate monitor, commonly found in other Android Wear smartwatches.

Bluetooth 4.1 and 802.11 b/g/n/ WiFi make up the connectivity suite. TAG Heuer has partnered with Intel for the device's processor, which the company describes as a 1.6-gigahertz dual-core unit with 500 megahertz "normal operation speed."

1 gigabyte of RAM and 4 gigabytes of flash storage round out the technical specifications.

The most interesting feature is not a feature at all, however. After two years, TAG will allow Connected buyers to swap their old watch -- plus another $1,500 -- and receive a mechanical TAG Heuer watch in return.

The TAG Heuer Connected is available now for $1,500 from TAG Heuer retailers throughout the U.S. and Canada. An international rollout is scheduled soon.

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