Apple reportedly tries, fails to hire Swiss watchmakers for iWatch

It looks like Apple has been attempting to hire away watchmakers from Swiss luxury watch brands as part of their much-rumored iWatch, though they are reportedly having some trouble with recruiting. While European watchmakers have been repeatedly contacted by Apple, Google, and others recently, companies like Swatch have little interest in working with them, and employees seem disenclined join tech firms. For instance, Apple has attempted to hire a number of employees from Swiss watchmaker Hublot, but has met with little success, according to Financial Times:

“Apple has contacted some of my employees – I saw the emails personally,” Mr Biver told a Swiss publication, claiming that all those who had been contacted refused the iPhone maker’s advances.

Would you want an iWatch in the style of a luxery timepiece? Let us know below in the comments.

Source: Financial Times

Joseph Keller is the former Editor in Chief of iMore. An Apple user for almost 20 years, he spends his time learning the ins and outs of iOS and macOS, always finding ways of getting the most out of his iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.

29 Comments
  • Swatch is kinda cheapish like Android, Hublot would be suited to Windows, iWatch needs to be classy like Rolex.
  • Rolex!? Jaeger LeCoultre's more like it...
  • Rolex looks cheap. Only because it is copied so much. Posted via the Android iMore App!
  • Trolololo ಠ益ಠ
  • Yep. I have ZERO interest in any of the options out right now. I want one that looks like a nice watch, not a cheap piece of plastic.
  • Yes. I don't want an NIKE Fuel Band SE iPhone watch. Needs to look like a watch. Sent from the iMore App
  • iRolex sounds good in Gold of course Sent from the iMore App
  • I do think Apple could benefit from the experience of real watchmakers. I hope after those allegedly failed attempts to recruit employees they opted for a partnership with one of the companies. I think it could help the watchmakers as well in order to stay relevant.
    (But we Swiss people can also be a little stubborn sometimes.. ^^)
  • These watchmakers are used to creating uncompromised high-end products with unparalled craftmanship. Apple, like any consumer electronics brand, makes carefully-compromised, board-room-calculated mass market products. I cannot see how the two worlds could ever fit. If those employees wanted to work in that kind of a field, they would never gone in the high-end watch industry to begin with.
  • +1 ಠ益ಠ
  • dumb move on their part then. anything Apple touches is gold and sells well.
  • You haven't heard of the Apple Newton, eWorld, Pippin, Apple Lisa, or the buttonless iPod shuffle have you? ಠ益ಠ
  • Or the quicktake camera... And the iPod HiFi... And the Bluetooth Headset...
  • Have they tried Casio? ;) I use to keep a cheap quartz watch in my pocket because I ruined a few nice one wearing them on my wrist and working on projects. When I got my first iPhone 3G I stopped carrying a watch. I imagine I would destroy an iWatch as well.
  • The swiss are extremely serious about their timepieces. I can see why they would see a "Smartwatch" as a joke. No one from Sweden is going to give up Chocolate to come work for Apple. The Swiss need to figure out how to make mini projectors so that they can produce watches with hands, and a touchscreen when you'd prefer. But the mechanics behind a watch...psh to smart watches.
  • Swatch watch is headquartered in Switzerland. Swedes are not known for chocolate. Get a map and look up how far away Switzerland is from Sweden.
  • Lol nice
  • It's funny how because apple get declined apple don't need then but had apple succeeded in hiring them you are the same people who would be jumping for joy. Lmao
  • Maybe they should try it with JaegerLeCoutre...
    Jony Ive designed a small series of watches for them. Sent from the iMore App
  • The last Rolex I looked at was only $37,000.00. Yes I want a classy iWatch, but at a fair price. Sent from the iMore App
  • Well Swiss isn't the only maker of watches. So on to the next one. Sent from the iMore App
  • I have had a lot of Swatch watches in my life. Swatch can learn from Apple about quality products, not the other way round. An iPhone looks near-new after 2 years in my pocket. After 2 years on my wrist, a swatch typically has:
    - scratched up plastic crystal
    - yellowed bands and/or watch body
    - peeling surface on bands
    - broken buckle
    - rips in the band holes
  • In my case it only took like 2 months for my Swatch to pick up both a scratched-up plastic transparency ("crystal?") and a broken buckle. As much as I love my plastic Swatch, I think next time I'll either get a metal Swatch or just get a different make & model of watch entirely.
  • I wonder if the employees being recruited would have to relocate? Would they have to give up what's likely a good job, and a balanced and relatively enjoyable life outside of work? Maybe they like their coworkers and company? Maybe they're satisfied with what they have?
  • I didn't know swatch was still around. I was over them in the 80's Sent from the iMore App
  • The spelling is terrible in this article, It should be "disinclined", not disenclined, and "luxury" not luxery. We all make mistakes, but it's really not too hard to use a spellcheck if you are going to be read by thousands of people.
  • Can't believe Apple will be making a quartz iwatch. Presently I believe all electronic watches are quartz ones so what contribution will these quartz watch makers contribute to a computer on the wrist. And judging from the comment from this Hublot guy reminded me of the kind of smartphone which google wantd to model after the blackberry. So the whatever Apple is making will look like a watch and not an iPod nano And yes give me a break.
  • I have putting off getting a pebble in anticipation for an Apple Brand watch, I have confidence Apple, don't let us down! Sent from the iMore App
  • It's extremely unprofessional to approach employees of other companies for recruitment purposes. In the industry, it's known as "poaching". Very surprised Apple would do this.