Diesel is a sub-brand of Fossil that is best known for its large smartwatches. Today the maker has announced the launch of the Full Guard 2.5, and it’s the largest Wear OS watch you can buy right now. The fashion brand’s new smartwatch features largely the same design from last year’s equivalent, though the tech on the inside has been ramped up significantly.
Starting with the design, it has a 56mm wide body and houses a 1.39-inch touchscreen display. In comparison, the Samsung Galaxy Watch comes in two sizes with the biggest having a 46mm body, while the largest Apple Watch Series 3 is only 42mm. The body also looks rugged and can easily withstand showers, swimming, and diving up to 30 meters.
Under the hood, it is powered by Qualcomm’s Wear 2100 chip along with 512MB RAM, and 4GB of internal storage. On the software side, it runs on Google’s Wear OS and comes with NFC for Google Pay. Google Assistant also comes pre-installed, although limited languages are supported.
The coolest feature of the Full Guard 2.5 has to be its neon watch face that changes color automatically throughout the day along with glowing analog time indicators. The display dial effects also change based on local weather behavior. It has a heart rate sensor along with its own standalone GPS.
One would expect such a huge watch to have a larger battery; sadly that’s not the case. Diesel promises only one to two days of battery life. Charging, on the other hand, requires just one hour.
The Full Guard 2.5 is available in three versions — a gray body with a brown strap, a black body with a grey strap, and a black body with a black strap. It retails for INR 24,495 (US$ 325) and will be up for purchase in select stores and Diesel.com.
Apple is preparing to open its first stores in India
Based on new job listings
For one of the largest smartphone markets in the world, India is one of the rarer countries where Apple does not outright dominate. Undoubtedly, the company is trying to change that. Ongoing job listings in India are suggesting that Apple is ready to open its first brick-and-mortar store in the country.
First reported by Financial Times, Apple has posted job openings in India for several retail roles including for the iconic Genius Bar. Another clue even indicates that some spots have already been filled ahead of time. A few employees in the country have reportedly posted about their new jobs on LinkedIn.
Unfortunately, none of the job listings show how many stores are planned and where they will be. Narrowing things down by a bit, a few of the confirmed employees are from Mumbai and New Delhi. The report also does not indicate when the stores will open. However, since a few have already been hired, a grand opening might be coming soon.
Apple has a lot to gain by strengthening its foothold in India. The country is an important stronghold for smartphone companies. However, the company might find things harder as time goes by. The country recently dictated that brands must switch to USB-C if they want to sell their devices in India. All over the world, Apple remains the last stalwart against adopting the more universal standard.
India to enforce USB-C on all phones by 2024
Smartphones and wearables affected
Last year, the European Union made a lot of waves by announcing the impending enforcement of USB-C across all devices sold in the region. Other countries, such as Brazil, joined in by pondering its own version of the same policy. Then, as 2022 wound to a definitive close, India, skipping a more deliberative phase, has announced a sweeping enforcement of USB-C coming in 2025.
In approximately two years’ time, most devices sold within India must use USB-C ports (via Business Standard). More specifically, Indian lawmakers have included smartphones and wearables as part of the new policy. Like policies in other countries, India’s policy revolves around the drive to reduce e-waste from devices.
Naturally, as is the case in other countries, Apple is the brand most affected by the ruling. While most Android-based smartphones already use USB-C across the board, Apple’s device still rely on the proprietary Lightning cable, severing a significant chunk of the populating from the more universal standard.
The country is nothing to shrug off, either. India is one of the largest smartphone markets in the world. Though Android is much more prevalent than Apple, India’s new policy is certainly a significant speed bump for the iPhone maker.
Though Apple has publicly protested against the new policies, the company has also confirmed that it will comply with the new rules. While it has a slightly lengthier timeframe in India, the brand has to comply in the European Union by the end of 2024.
India might force Apple to adopt USB-C soon
Exploratory talks have started
It’s the world versus Apple. After years and years of proprietary hardware, Apple is finally facing a deluge of pressure to abandon the Lightning cable. The entire European Union have already decided to force device markers, particularly Apple, to adopt the universal standard, USB-C. Now, another country is joining in: India.
As reported by Mint, the Indian government has started holding exploratory talks with manufacturers to discuss the possibility of a common charging standard. While the talks aren’t decisive yet, it’s the first step towards legislation moving in favor of a standard.
Though the wording remains vague, a lot of pressure is on Apple. The iPhone maker is still one of the biggest opponents against adopting USB-C worldwide. Amid the company’s growing gallery of USB-C devices, the Lightning cable is still alive and well. A lot of other manufacturers have already moved on to the standard for its their ports.
Soon, the company might not have a choice. If a decisive law is passed, India will join the European Union and Brazil in potentially forcing Apple into the standard. It’s not an insignificant ally for the pro-USB-C camp, either. India is one of the biggest smartphone markets in the world.
Apple is unlikely to launch a USB-C iPhone series this year. The company is already expected to launch the next series in a few weeks’ time. If such a phone is coming, it might debut as soon as next year.
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