(REVIEW): Fossil’s first Android Wear smartwatch arrives this holiday season for $275

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Android Wear has another nice-looking smartwatch. This time around it comes to us from veteran watchmaker Fossil, a newcomer to the increasingly crowded Android Wear field. The Fossil Q Founder looks similar to the new Moto 360. It features a circular display, traditional watch lugs, and, while it can’t be seen in the press photos, earlier images have suggested that it features an odd black bar at the bottom. This likely houses an ambient light sensor for automatically adjusting display brightness.

The Fossil Q Founder is the first Android Wear watch to include an Intel processor, but it won’t be the last. The chipmaker also partnered with TAG Heuer for a still-unreleased Android Wear watch. To date, a majority of Android Wear watches have been equipped with a quad-core Snapdragon 400 processor from Qualcomm. It will be interesting to see how Intel’s processor performs. We will know more in a few weeks when we begin testing the watch.

The Q Founder runs Android Wear and works with both iPhones and Android devices. You can view notifications on your wrist for things like calls, text messages, emails and calendar events. You will also get personalized Google cards with information on weather, sporting events, traffic and more. The watch doesn’t include cellular capabilities, however, so you will have to be in Bluetooth range of your smartphone or connected to Wi-Fi for complete functionality.

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A set date wasn’t announced for the Q Founder. The watch is said to arrive in time for the holidays and will start at $275. That’s cheaper than both the Moto 360 ($300) and Huawei Watch ($350). A model with a steel link bracelet will also be available, however it’s unclear how much it will cost. International pricing and release information wasn’t available, but the US price converts to about £180 in the UK and AU$380 in Australia.

In addition to the Q Founder, Fossil introduced an entire lineup of connected devices that will work with both iPhones and Android devices. There’s the Q Reveler and Q Dreamer, two fitness trackers designed for men and women, respectively. Then there is the Q Grant, a traditional watch that is also capable of tracking fitness activity and alerting you to notifications with a gentle vibration. It reminds me a lot of the Withings Activite.

The Q Reveler and Dreamer will be available on October 25 for $125 (converted to about £80, AU$175), while the Q Grant will arrive on the same day with a starting price of $175 (or about £115, AU$240).

TechDomes2015

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