My random theory about future watch size trends
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  1. #1
    Member dbostedo's Avatar
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    My random theory about future watch size trends

    So with the announcement that Christopher Ward was merging with Synergies Horologeries and producing an in-house movement, I got to thinking. (Dangerous, I know. ) And I've come up with a silly theory on a possible sequence of events, the first couple of which are presumably already happening :

    1) ETA slows release of movements to non-Swatch watch brands

    2) Prices for in-house movement watches increases more over time than non-in-house

    3) This forces more companies to try to produce their own movements, perhaps starting with companies like Frederique-Constant and Damasko, and continuing to companies like Steinhart and Christopher Ward

    4) Christopher Ward starts to produce large dress watches with in-house movements and features normally only associated with much more expensive watches, like a long power reserve

    5) Some other companies follow suit, causing normally higher-end exclusive complications to move down-market - long power reserve, annual calendars, power reserve indicators, moon phases, retrograde hands, etc.

    6) These complications are good, but done in a more cost efficient way without the elegance of more expensive brands - for instance, fitting a larger barrel and spring to give a long power reserve and simply increasing the watch size to compensate

    7) Higher end brands look for additional ways to differentiate, and miniaturization and thin-ness become the order of the day

    8) This continues and leads to copying that trend from cheaper brands, and the current bigger-is-better watch size trend starts to reverse

    9) In a few years time, you can walk into any mall department store, and buy the newest, most popular Nixon (or some equivalent brand) 35 mm watch


    Thoughts? Keep in mind that, of course, I probably don't know what I'm talking about.

    And since we can't have a thread without pics, here's an old 35mm Omega and a less old 35 mm Cyma of mine :

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    ​Grand Seiko SBGE033, Jaquest Droz Grande Seconde, Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute, Prometheus Piranha, Orient Wingman, Zeppelin Flatline 7366-3, Glashutte Original PanoMaticLunar, Epos Emotion 3390, Steinhart Ocean 2 Premium, Hamilton Khaki Field, Omega 1965 Vintage, Seiko 5 SNKK27, Seiko 1977 Vintage, Nomos Orion 38, Wittnauer 1960's Vintage, Movado SL1 Chrono, Seiko SBQK085, Cyma Le Locle, Casio Oceanus OCW-S100-1AJF

  2. #2
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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    There is obviously some logic in your thoughts, crystal balls are notoriously hard to read though. The high-end is just beginning to grow so my opinion is it will take a decent amount of time before the trend reverses.

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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    Probable but I don't see it coming down to 35mm, 40mm seems to be the sweet spot.

    We would likely see higher end brands messing around with more high tech materials before that though.

    Non-ferrous metals, silicon, carbon, ceramic etc.
    Last edited by mew88; July 3rd, 2014 at 03:32.

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  5. #4
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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    ooorrrr..... movements haven't changed since the late 1700's and regardless of the name of the companies everything continues uninterrupted as it has for the past 250 years...
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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    As long as the time is available on every digital device, watches will continue to be more jewelry than a way to tell time. And, as long as their primary function is appearance, they're always going to be large enough to be easily noticed on the wrist.

    Now, what's "too small"? I don't know, but I strongly suspect 35mm will be in that range.
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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    What's the basis for 2)?

    I think that it is more likely that movement companies will increase production and probably their spectrum of offerings to fill the void left by ETA's departure. Or rather, watch manufacturers, knowing of their future access to ETAs, will start shifting orders to another for ebauches. Also, companies with in-house production and capacity, such as Moser, will offer movements to other manufacturers.

  8. #7
    Member dbostedo's Avatar
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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    Quote Originally Posted by aardvarkbark View Post
    What's the basis for 2)?
    It's a total WAG. Most of it is. That one's just driven by the impression I get from these forums and the high end companies.
    ​Grand Seiko SBGE033, Jaquest Droz Grande Seconde, Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute, Prometheus Piranha, Orient Wingman, Zeppelin Flatline 7366-3, Glashutte Original PanoMaticLunar, Epos Emotion 3390, Steinhart Ocean 2 Premium, Hamilton Khaki Field, Omega 1965 Vintage, Seiko 5 SNKK27, Seiko 1977 Vintage, Nomos Orion 38, Wittnauer 1960's Vintage, Movado SL1 Chrono, Seiko SBQK085, Cyma Le Locle, Casio Oceanus OCW-S100-1AJF

  9. #8
    lvt
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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    Quote Originally Posted by dbostedo View Post
    Thoughts? Keep in mind that, of course, I probably don't know what I'm talking about.

    You should put it in the title ;)

    IMO, your quote on CW is irrelevant, they just do their watchmaking business, they can't decide how and where the trend go.
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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    Quote Originally Posted by lvt View Post
    You should put it in the title ;)

    IMO, your quote on CW is irrelevant, they just do their watchmaking business, they can't decide how and where the trend go.
    Well of course CW can't alone... but what if a bunch of companies give it a shot and they sell well?
    ​Grand Seiko SBGE033, Jaquest Droz Grande Seconde, Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute, Prometheus Piranha, Orient Wingman, Zeppelin Flatline 7366-3, Glashutte Original PanoMaticLunar, Epos Emotion 3390, Steinhart Ocean 2 Premium, Hamilton Khaki Field, Omega 1965 Vintage, Seiko 5 SNKK27, Seiko 1977 Vintage, Nomos Orion 38, Wittnauer 1960's Vintage, Movado SL1 Chrono, Seiko SBQK085, Cyma Le Locle, Casio Oceanus OCW-S100-1AJF

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    Re: My random theory about future watch size trends

    I wish the watch companies would go back to 35mm as normal. As your Omega and Cyma shows - it's understated elegance and of classic size and proportion - even on larger wrists.

    Maybe there will be a slowdown in size increase, but 40mm seems to be the normal size now and IMHO it will never reverse. Why? A few factors - One, people are just larger nowadays. Also, watches are no longer that important as tools or instruments so they are basically jewelry - and the watch companies need to justify charging hundreds of dollars and up for their watch. And on a related factor, watch technology is stagnant with little or no development, so how to sell more? Gimmicks like design and increasing size.

    I wish it were otherwise as I have fairly dainty wrists.
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