New Fossil Gen 6 Hybrid, what to expect ?

Fossil is teasing a new hybrid watch described as GEN 6.

Fossil teasing page

Fossil teasing

Gen 6 is their current Wear OS 2 smartwatch line. They are supposed to be updated to Wear OS 3 when it will be available for non Samsung watches.

Fossil Gen 6

They already have hybrid watches :

- a line of watches without display which uses hands to point indexes

- the Hybrid HR with an e-ink display and a Fossil OS and app on the phone

Those hybrids have an excellent battery life (about 2 weeks for the HR) but limited functions in comparison to a full smartwatch running Wear OS.

The new hybrid could be a Wear OS watch with actual hands

Gen 6 is a Wear OS line, they talk about "The smart features you want" which would apply to a smarter hybrid than the HR line, a watch with a full smartwatch OS, maybe, or a completely revamped OS.

But if this is just a completely revamped Fossil OS, why would they call it Gen 6 ? Wouldn't it be Gen 2 instead ? However they are perfectly free to use the naming scheme they want.

Some years ago, Google bought some tech from Fossil for 40M$. Some sources report a mysterious tech, some other indicate it's an hybrid watch tech, the DIANA project, for DIgital ANAlog. It wouldn't be so surprising if Google finally uses parts of this tech in their OS. Like the way of managing hands, of managing the display to make room for the hands, for example, or maybe something related to e-ink displays used in watches ?

OLED or e-ink ?

If the Google OS hybrid hypothesis proves right, would that be an OLED watch or an e-ink watch ?

An OLED display with actual hands would be beautifull and allow for an already quite good battery life, reducing the need of a power hungry Always On Display. We could expect something between 3 to 5 days. That would be significantly better than 2 days for the current Samsung Watch 4 44mm.

As a comparison, the TicWatch Pro uses a secondary DSTN screen over an OLED panel to provide a battery friendly Always On Display. It usually runs for 3 to 4 days on a charge. 

In the same idea, The Mykronoz Ze time used actual hands over an IPS screen and was approximatively in the same league about battery life.

IPS Mykronoz Zetime (left) VS e-ink Fossil Hybrid HR (right)

An e-ink display instead of an OLED one would use much less power but the e-ink limitations may be difficult to manage for a modern Wear OS 3, colorfull and using quite a lot of animations.

Maybe all of these expectations will prove wrong.

But it's still possible that Fossil simply decided to joint their hybrids and smartwatches generations under the same numbers and will just rebrand the HR with minor changes. That doesn't seems very logical to me but marketing has its own logic...