Luxury brands get strict over knockoff smartwatch faces

Windows Smartwatch Concept By Nadir Aslam 1

The most expensive watchmaking brands are cracking down on digital smartwatch faces.

According to a report on TorrentFreak, a group of leading watchmakers are attempting to flush out digital copies of their luxury watch faces.

This might be bad news if you're a smartwatch owner thats likes to customise your device with faces that make it look like a mechanical timepiece.

Brands like IWC, Panerai, Omega, Fossil, Armani, Michael Kors, Tissot, Certina, Swatch, Flik Flak and Mondaine are reportedly sending cease and desist notices to websites that offer these digital knockoff faces.

Watchmakers have always come down hard when it comes to their copyright being infringed.

Recently Richemont, owners of Cartier, IWC and Panerai made ISPs blocks links to websites that were selling counterfeit watches with their brands on.

In the past Apple found themselves in very hot water when a Mondaine watch face found its way onto iPads in iOS6. As a result the tech giant were forced to pay the Swiss company $21 million in licensing fees. That same Mondaine face can actually be downloaded for smartwatches now.

FaceRepo is just one of the sites to have received a number of these infringement notices. The site's operator told TorrentFreak how they actively discourage users from uploading anything that could breach copyright.

"Although some of the replica faces we’ve received take downs for are very cool looking and represent significant artistic talent on the part of the designer, we believe that owners of copyrights or trademarks have the right to defend their brand.

“If a copyright or trademark owner contacts us, we will promptly remove infringing material. To date, all requests for removal of infringing material have been satisfied within a matter of hours.”

Of course at the end of the day copyright infringement is illegal and people shouldn't be doing it, but surely these brands should be directing more of their attention to the amount of fake watches that are plaguing the market places.

It's through these knockoffs that the big brands lose money not through the designs people choose to have on their smartwatch.