Swatch CEO on rumored iWatch sounds a lot like Palm CEO before iPhone destroyed it

Nick Hayek, CEO of Swiss watchmaker Swatch, said today during a press conference for the company’s annual results that he doesn’t see a smart watch product from Apple being the “next revolution.” We can’t help but be reminded of Palm CEO Ed Colligan’s comments before the iPhone hit:

“We’ve learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone,” Ed Colligan apparently laughed about with John Markoff last Thursday morning. “PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They’re not going to just walk in.”

Hayek’s main reasoning is difficulty delivering compelling content on such a small display, something the company has explored with its Paparazzi line of watches in collaboration with Microsoft:

“Personally, I don’t believe it’s the next revolution,” the chief of the largest Swiss watchmaker said at a press conference on annual results in Grenchen, Switzerland. “Replacing an iPhone with an interactive terminal on your wrist is difficult. You can’t have an immense display.”

Hayek also reasoned that consumers often buy watches as a piece of jewelry and like to change them on any given day. The CEO claimed that Swatch has had talks with Apple over the years regarding “materials for products and so-called energy harvesting technology that would generate energy from physical movement.” Bloomberg reported earlier this year that Apple had a team of over 100 product designers working on a wristwatch-like device and more recently said Apple would launch its watch product some time this year.

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Apple reaches licensing agreement with SBB over classic Swiss Railway clock design

After allegations that Apple was copying the classic Swiss Railway clock design for its new Clocks app in iOS 6, Apple was expected to meet with Swiss Federal Railways SBB to presumably find some sort of resolution. SBB made an official announcement on its website (via TheVerge) today, claiming it has reached an agreement with Apple:

The Swiss Federal Railways SBB and Apple have reached an agreement on the use of the SBB station clock on devices like iPad and iPhone. That the two parties have governed in a license agreement.

Swiss Federal Railways is not disclosing how much the agreement is for, but it said Apple has agreed to its licensing terms for use of the Hans Hilfiker designed railway station clock design. There is also no word how this might affect Mondaine, the watchmaker that currently has rights to the design for its watch faces, but it looks like Apple won’t have an issue using the design in iOS: Read more