Another iOS update and what did I gets? An app to sync my new iWatch. Great, thanks for the advertising but I have a watch. I also have a very accurate clock on my phone, laptop, in my car, In fact there is a timepiece just about everywhere I look. So maybe this should be called “why do I still wear a watch?”
It’s not such a daft question since it’s clearly not about time keeping. I can think of two reasons. It’s one of the only universally acceptable pieces of male jewellery and the wrist is a great place to keep something useful and valuable.
So, jewellery. Most watches keep adequate time, good enough to get to work on time or police the naughty step. But as time devices? Few have alarms and very few change time zones or make summer and winter shifts. A good watch can be had for the price of a family cinema ticket or the average house, depending on branding. Women’s watches are like shoes, everything from the functional to crazy things that look great but sacrifice nearly all utility to be fabulous. So no argument then, it’s jewellery, and that means it appeals to us in a completely different way. Jewellery touches our sense of identity and our place in the world. It’s gifts, treasure, memories and heritage all rolled into one. We subconsciously invest a lot of emotional capital into these bands on our wrist
The pull of a brand is a subtle and subjective business loaded with emotive judgements. Whether a smart watch suppliers can convince me to ditch my current personal statement of masculine identity and buy into a set of brand values that come from a very different sense of design and tradition probably won’t be driven by apps, features or utility. So for the first time it’s not Apple v Nokia or Samsung, the competition is TAG, Breitling and Rolex and that’s a very different set of aspirations.