In an interview during Baselworld which is being held at Switzerland this week, both companies revealed to Reuters that they do not have plans to enter the smartwatch market at the moment. For Patek Philippe, their decision seems to be one steeped in fashion and tradition and according to the company’s Chairman Thierry Stern, “When you are buy a Patek Philippe, you buy a timeless piece of art. It would be as if you told people to no longer buy paintings but TV screens projecting the image of a painting.”
He also expressed his belief that consumers would much rather wear a traditional watch when pairing it with a formal outfit, rather than a smartwatch. Hermès, on the other hand, is content to just sit back and observe the market for now. According to Guillaume de Seynes, the company’s managing director, “For the moment, Hermes is observing what is going on. We still do not know how the smartwatch market will evolve.”
We suppose it’s still a bit too early to tell where smartwatches will be in the next few years, but Swatch’s co-founder has spoken up in the past about how Swiss watchmakers need to learn to adapt and evolve, especially given how they had initially underestimated the quartz movement from Japan which proved to be a more accurate and more affordable movement compared to mechanical.