The unlikely combination of TAG Heuer and Nintendo has announced the “TAG Heuer Connected ✕ Super Mario Limited Edition” smartwatch. Like previous TAG Heuer Connected watches, this is an extremely expensive ($ 2,150) Wear OS smartwatch with extremely dated internals. You mostly pay for TAG Heuer and the Nintendo name.
TAG Heuer’s website still counts down to the release date of July 15, but several websites have already published the details on the watch. Specifications match 2020 TAG Heuer Connected, so that means a 45mm watch with a Snapdragon Wear 3100 SoC, 1GB RAM, 8GB storage, a 1.39-inch, 454 × 454 OLED display, a 430mAh battery, Wi -Fi, NFC, GPS, water resistance and a heart rate sensor. When it comes to computer hardware, you can get the same thing from a $ 300 Wear OS device.
What you get are TAG Heuer designs and materials, such as a steel watch case and a super hard sapphire touch screen. The hardware has a few Mario-specific touches, such as a mushroom, warp pipe and a star for the 3, 6 and 9-hour indicators on the frame. The bell crown and the lock have engraved “M” logos, just like the Mario hood. There also appear to be two bracelets: a red rubber strap and another black leather strap with red highlights.
When it comes to software, there are four exclusives Mario-themed dials. The three icons around the frame are actually part of the step tracking mode. A ring starts at 12 o’clock and will wind around the circumference of the dial when you get closer to your step target. When you cross the icon’s thresholds at 3, 6 and 9, you will see a suitable animation game celebrating your step progress, and Mario will slide down a flagpole at the end (here is a video).
As usual, we can not exaggerate how old and slow Qualcomm’s smartwatch SoC is. Qualcomm has not improved the basics of its smartwatch chips since its original release. In 2014, the very first Android Wear devices used four 28 nm ARM Cortex A7 processors, and seven years later (2021) this $ 2000 watch still uses four 28 nm Cortex A7 processors. After six years of suffocating the Wear OS ecosystem with poor hardware, Qualcomm released the Snapdragon Wear 4100 with updated specifications last year: a still not so good four ARM Cortex A53 CPU on a 12 nm process. But now most suppliers have left Wear OS, and SoC has not seen good adoption.
Wear OS is also undergoing a major upheaval later this year, which is likely to leave the Mario clock in the dust. Samsung drops Tizen OS and joins forces with Google to revive Wear OS for what is known as “Wear OS 3.0.” With more modern smartwatch hardware with a Samsung-made SoC, Wear OS has the chance to be competitive again. With limited CPU power, it is currently unlikely that 7-year-old hardware such as this TAG Heuer watch will be able to jump to version 3.0, or that the user experience will be good if it upgrades. The last word from Google, in response to Qualcomm, was a cool “User experience is a top priority for us. We have not confirmed the justification or timeline for whether any Wear OS smartwatch will update to the new unified platform.” So do not be surprised if the $ 2000 watch does not receive updates.
It’s hard to call any Nintendo product “expensive” after $ 1.5 million Mario 64 auction the other day, and with only 2,000 units being made, Mario watches will certainly be rare items. The watch will be sold tomorrow on the TAG Heuer website and a few stores. If you are not interested in spending $ 2000 but really want one super Mario smartwatch in your life, consider putting a mario image as wallpaper on an apple watch.
Listing image of TAG Heuer