Basis' wearables are (probably) dead

A VP from Intel's wearables division says that brand partnerships are a better smartwatch strategy.

When you're sitting across from Dr. Jerry Bautista, the vice president of Intel's wearables division, you have to ask about Basis. After all, Intel has been weirdly quiet about the fate of wearables startup it bought, especially after recalling the Basis Peak due to overheating concerns. Bautista wouldn't give a definitive answer about the future of the brand, but from what he didn't say, it's clear we'll never see a new Basis device.

I asked if, instead of releasing devices off its own back, Intel would double-down on partnering with third-parties. The plan, as he explained, was to pair up with various companies to address different parts of the watch market. So, for instance, it teamed with Tag Heuer for a premium timepiece and New Balance for a runner's watch. Bautista said that these partnerships are "a very good example of our strategy" to let other companies sell Intel-made products. He added that teaming up with "iconic brands" enables those firms to "focus on the product in a way that we can't."

So, farewell Basis, we hardly knew ye.

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