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English Premier League refs getting smartwatches this season

EPL referees will wear Tag Heuer Connected watches to help them keep track of game time.

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In a 90-minute soccer game, a referee is faced with multiple challenging decisions. One thing they do not want to worry about is keeping track of time.

Well fret no more officials: Swiss watchmaker TAG Heuer is teaming up with English Premier League referees this season to bring its Connected watch to the pitch.

Officials will wear the watch and use a new app, which will track the natural rhythm of a full match. The app has been designed to mesh perfectly with both 45-minute halves, stoppage times, a 15-minute halftime rest as well as extra time. The app gestures also make sure that a referee does not accidentally stop the time.

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The smartwatch plans on making timekeeping a breeze, allowing officials to keep all their focus on the match.

“This is a real tool that referees can and will actually use during games,” Jean-Claude Biver, TAG Heuer’s chief executive, said in a statement. “It takes advantage of the Connected watch’s sophisticated technology, which we developed at TAG Heuer with our partners Intel and Google. Because every detail of the referee app has been thought through with Premier League referees, I have no doubt that this will be a useful tool.”

Since the beginning of the season, Premier League officials have been getting acquainted with their new wrist buddies during the preseason and warmup games. They will have to do so if they expect to meet the high demands that a first-rate league expects.

“Refereeing a Premier League game has never been more demanding than it is now, with every refereeing decision heavily scrutinised,” Mike Riley, a former Premier League referee, said in a statement. “The introduction of the TAG Heuer Connected and the TAG Heuer referee app makes the job that much simpler. Knowing they have an accurate, reliable, high-functioning device on their wrist to keep track of game time will give referees extra confidence and leave them to focus on the running of the match.”

The company is planning on releasing a downloadable Premier League watch dial to their smartwatches for the everyday user as well. The app will provide fans with up-to-date news, plays and scores from their favorite teams across the Premier League.

TAG has also extended its connected smartwatch via a partnership with the German football league, Bundesliga. This is the first partner outside of TAG Heuer’s ambassadors to work with the company on an exclusive for the TAG Heuer Connected watch.

TAG Heuer’s smartwatch will look to make a referee’s job just a fraction of a second easier, and bring your favorite teams just a discrete push of a screen from your beading eyes.