We’re pretty sure this was never Google’s intention for Wear OS, formerly known as Android Wear, but the wearable platform has become the home of more luxury traditional watchmakers than tech-focused companies lately.
Instead of seeing LG upgrade last year’s Watch Sport and Watch Style, or witness the revival of the once-popular Moto 360 lineup, we’re yet again treated to an extravagant design with a prohibitive price from a Swiss luxury goods specialist today.
The Hublot Big Bang Referee 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia (yes, really) is expected to cost even more than the Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45, which hails from the same LVMH multinational conglomerate parent.
In case that absurd name didn’t give it away, the key marketing angle of the first-ever Hublot-branded smartwatch is a partnership with FIFA for the official endorsement of the upcoming football World Cup.
There will only be 2018 units (get it?) sold to the “masses” starting May 1 for a rumored $5,200 or so apiece, as well as a separate batch used by referees at every World Cup game to keep the official time and even stay connected to the goal-line technology and video assistant ref.
The intelligent limited edition timepiece obviously runs the newest version of Wear OS with Google Pay support enabled by a built-in NFC chip, its own mic for Google Assistant interactions, standalone GPS functionality, and a 410mAh battery rated for a day or so of endurance between charges.
With a 49mm case made of “polished and satin-finished” titanium, a similarly premium bezel, and a 35.3mm dial, the Hublot Big Bang Referee 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia is not exactly what you’d call a low-key device. But it is water resistant up to 50 meters, with a sharp 400 x 400 AMOLED screen in tow, and it certainly goes the extra mile trying to grab the attention of
soccer football fans. You’ve got special watch faces, an authorized 2018 World Cup logo, and notifications for every game without you needing to lift a finger or set an alert.