The demise of the watch? Not yet, and hopefully never….if The ActiveWatcher has anything to do with it.

The ActiveWatcher was recently on vacation, surfing the Internet, and came across an article in the International Herald Tribune about watchmakers seizing the latest marketing technologies.  You can read the article here.  The introduction paragraph talks about the potential obscurity of the watch due to the cell phone, which, as everyone who lives on Earth by now knows, tracks and tells time.   My interest was piqued, and prompted me to do some additional research on the Internet.   That research led to a similar article in the Boston Globe titled “Does anybody (under 30) really know what time it is?”  You can read the article here. As the title implies, the article more fully talks about the increasing obscurity of the watch due to the cell phone.

You may be saying to yourself, “Yeah, big whoop, how is this issue newsworthy enough to be discussed on such an important and cutting-edge blog such as this one?”  Frankly, the ActiveWatcher didn’t realize that the practice of ditching the watch, the sine qua non of the ActiveWatches website, was a bona fide trend.  The ActiveWatcher was born at the cusp of Generation X, so he remembers a time in his life, not so long ago in fact, that the cell phone didn’t exist and certainly wasn’t ubiquitous.  That meant that watches were necessary to many, despite the ability of us stone agers to tell time from the sun.

The ActiveWatcher isn’t about denying the obvious.  He realizes that the utility of a watch has significantly declined given the constant, modern day clutch of the cell phone, no matter where and where.  At one point, perhaps about five years ago, the ActiveWatcher even considered ditching his watch to rely solely on the cell phone, but he didn’t.  He tried, but he couldn’t.  His wrist felt too light, leading to the perpetual feeling that something just wasn’t right.  And everytime he sought the time, he was disgusted with the sight of a naked wrist in all its glory, with the tan line outlining his former watch.

Beyond that, the ActiveWatcher posits two logical reasons that the cell phone has not imperiled the first civilized tool coveted by the Type-A caveman.

First, the cell phone is simply impractical for telling time during most physical activities, particularly intense ones.  Can you imaging trying to pull out a cell phone during a swim and climbing a wall?  “Hey Jack, hold my rope as I hang on this cliff and pull out my cell phone to see if it’s time for dinner?”  (Alas, the ActiveWatcher is persuaded that the ActiveWatches’ business model — as a purveyor of sports watches — remains intact.)

Second, the watch is yet another method to showcase your individual sense of style and another expression of your personality.   In this sense, it’s another piece of jewelry, albeit with a practical purpose.   Grant it, a cell phone achieves the same objective (cue the latest Tag Heuer cellphone), but not so effectively when it’s stuck mostly in your pocket.

Call the ActiveWatcher old-fashioned, but he’s willing to argue that the cell phone just doesn’t cut it as a constant, reliable tool for time, regardless of the setting.   The cell phone isn’t readily accessible as a watch, which is attached to your wrist and not stuck in your pocket, and is prohibited in certain settings, contrary to the universal inclusivity of the watch.  Not to mention, the cell phone is easier to lose and is inoperable without constant charging.  In my book, the cell phone is only marginally better than relying on public clocks or the good-old fashioned, “Hey, got the time?”

Let’s just hope for the ActiveWatchers sake, everyone under 30 agrees.

The ActiveWatcher


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3 Responses to “The demise of the watch? Not yet, and hopefully never….if The ActiveWatcher has anything to do with it.”

  1. Energy for a Warming World: A Plan to Hasten the Demise of Fossil Fuels | Fresh Green & Clean Says:

    […] The demise of the watch? Not yet… […]

  2. SS France Says:

    Wonderful insight:-)

  3. Daryl Hermie Says:

    Great post, I like it, I have bookmarked it!

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