A watch is essentially an extension of your personality. It’s a statement that lives on the wrist. It can tell other a lot about your fashion style, humour, athleticism, hobbies and wealth but with so many types of watches, where do you start.
Picking a watch that suits you can be daunting as there are so many things to think about. In this article you will find a rundown of the types of watch there are to help you choose.
An analogue watch has a display that shows a small clock face in a 12 hour format with an hour, minute and often a second hand. Sometimes there are Roman numerals. You will most likely see 60 minute markers around the face, too.
Digital watches usually have hours, minutes and seconds expressed on a small screen in numbers, rather than by hands.
The first digital watch appeared in the 1920s. By 1972, Hamilton marketed the first-ever commercial digital watch. It came with a price tag of £2,100. In today currency that would be around £13k. By the end of the 1970s you could pick up a digital watch for less than $10.
An automatic watch is one that winds continually thanks to the natural motion of the wearer. It uses a rotor that spins as the wrist moves and the energy created is used to wind the watch or charge a battery. It can give the power during periods of less movement, like at night or when the watch isn’t being worn. You can usually get power for 28-48 hours when it’s not worn.
James Bond wore some slick automatic watches over the years. Check them out in our review.
A quartz watch uses a quartz crystal that is electronically oscillated to a specific frequency. This frequency gets broken down via a circuit and the power comes out of a tiny stepping motor which makes the hands of the watch move. A quartz watch will still require a battery every once in a while.
A mechanical watch is one that relies on a mechanism to operate. These are driven by a mainspring which requires winding once in a while. This is what creates the ticking sound of a watch!
The smartwatch changed the entire industry forever. A wearable piece of technology designed to sit on the wrist. It has all the characteristics of a traditional watch.
You can commonly pair your smartwatch with your smartphone. This will enhance your experience.
A smart watch can do many things – deliver notifications for things like calls (and some have the ability to let you answer them), text, emails, notifications from third-party apps like Facebook and WhatsApp. You can even call an Uber from some smartwatches. As long as there’s a dedicated app, there’s an abundance of things your smartwatch can do that your smartphone can, but with the added convenience of it being right there on your wrist. Learn about the family sharing possibilities available with apple smartwatches.
Not all fitness watches are smartwatches and vice versa. You often find them sharing one another’s features, though. A fitness tracker will monitor aspects of your health. They track things like your steps, distance travelled over the course of a day, calories burned, sleep patterns and quality, heart rate.
Some more expensive options advanced features like GPS functions and waterproofing so you’re able to take them on extreme adventures.
The dress watch is an elegant option in comparison to other types of watch. Its purpose is to tell time and look good. It’s not usually a complicated device.
They tend to be simple, minimalistic, but beautiful. Dress watches aren’t made to be worn every day. They’re a fashion accessory that tells time.
Certina offers some lovely dress watches. You can read our review of the brand here.
A luxury watch is usually made of expensive materials like ceramic, 18 carat cold, titanium or high-grade stainless steel. They sometimes have precious stones on the face and cost many thousands upon thousands of dollars.
You don’t get much more luxurious than Cartier, read our buying here.
Chronograph is a nicer word than stopwatch, but that’s essentially that’s all it is. Using one is incredibly simple. All you have to do is press a dedicated button to stop and start it. You can press another button to reset it. They’re great for people who are into running!
Dive watches are made to be extremely water-resistant to allow their wearer to go to great depths with a reliable watch on their wrist. A watch that has water-resistance of up to 100m and over is best and may have features that tell their wearer how long they have left before they must surface. They also feature luminous faces, hands and markers so they’re easily readable underwater.
Pilots need a reliable watch. Aviation-specific timepieces sit at the apex of style and performance. They’re durable and they look fantastic at the same time.
Glycine watches are dedicated to meeting the needs of pilots. You can get a great overview of what an aviation watch should be like in our review of Glycine here.
Tactical and rugged
The terms tactical and rugged mean the same thing. These types are also known as ‘field’ watches. They’re designed for the extreme human being. Those in the special forces and/or into sports that require being exposed to extreme conditions like water pressure or hot and cold temperatures.
They are sports watches on steroids. They often have a military look and feel, are made of near-bullet-proof materials and have a plethora of features to help make adventures go smoothly – accurate GPS and cellular functions, to name just two.
There are so many kinds of watch it’s impossible to squeeze them all into one article. There are variants within these categories. Features range with budget, as does design. There’s certainly a unique timepiece to suit everyone.
Last Updated on August 23, 2021
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