img-4174Some members of a Fossil R&D team are also joining Google as part of the deal. 
César Salza / CNET

Google is buying secret smartwatch technology from Fossil for $40 million. 

Design company Fossil said Thursday some members of the research and development team supporting that intellectual property will join Google as well.

“We’ve built and advanced a technology that has the potential to improve upon our existing platform of smartwatches,” said Greg McKelvey, executive vice president and chief strategy and digital officer at Fossil, in a press release (PDF). “Together with Google, our innovation partner, we’ll continue to unlock growth in wearables.” 

The deal is expected to close later this month. Google declined to share further information about Fossil’s smartwatch technology that it’s buying.  

In 2015, Fossil acquired Misfit, a wearable-tech startup focused on fitness trackers, for $260 million. The deal married Fossil’s fashion and watchmaking skills with Misfit’s technology. But Fossil appears to be getting out of that market. 

Fossil and Google have put out a few smartwatches. The fashion company’s latest, Fossil Sport, was a Google Wear OS smartwatch released in November. The watch had Qualcomm’s newest 3100 wearable chip to make its battery life longer.

Last year, Google and its partners like Fossil put the emphasis more on fitness when they designed their smartwatches. The devices’ fitness-tracking feature, Google Fit, was revamped with new Move Minutes and Heart Point goals.

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