World’s First GPS Solar Watch – Seiko Astron9:23 am
Here is a watch that you can take anywhere in the world and never need to adjust its time. The Astron is fitted with GPS receivers that can automatically identify the time zone you are in and adjust the time accordingly. This is highly useful for those who fly frequently to different parts of the world and regularly need to change the time on their watches. With the Astron, you can forget this annoying task forever and always be on local time, wherever you may be.
The Seiko Astron automatically recognizes and adjusts to all 39 time zones on earth.
This isn’t the first time that Seiko is launching a revolutionary new timepiece. On 25th December 1969, Seiko launched the world’s first ever commercially available ‘quartz’ wristwatch. It was called the Seiko Astron and the brand’s new solar powered GPS watch has been named after that legendary timepiece. At that time, the brand had claimed that “Someday, all watches will be made this way.” Of course, that statement hasn’t yet come true, but the original Seiko Astron did change the entire watchmaking industry as we knew it then. It remains to be seen whether the new Astron has such an impact on the horological world. Though I must say that Seiko has created something quite ground-breaking with the new Astron.
The Astron is accurate to within one second per 100,000 years.
Since the mid 1990s, there have been watches that receive radio signals, but they are far from perfect in their functionality. They need to be placed in areas that have strong radio signals to update their time. Of course, it is not always possible to be in such an area, and in such cases these watches are no better than ordinary timepieces.
The GPS receiver in the Seiko Astron is not limited in such a manner and can receive signals almost anywhere on the globe. With a simple push of a button, the Astron can identify the exact latitude and longitude, recognize the time zone and adjust to the local time. All this is done within a mere 30 seconds. And in case you want to save those 30 seconds of precious time when you reach your destination, you can pre-set the time before boarding the plane. Simply change the time zone manually and switch the Astron to airplane mode so that the GPS receiver is turned off.
Seiko has divided the world into one million ‘squares’ and allocated a time zone to each.
Seiko has gone to great lengths to ensure that you always get the correct local time wherever you go. The watch even has a feature for adjusting to Daylight Saving Time. The DST indicator is placed at 9 o’clock and can be turned on simply with a push of a button. The face of the watch acts as a solar panel which charges the battery of the watch. It can be charged with any kind of light, though sunlight is the most preferred one. Six minutes of sunlight is all it takes to power the watch for one day and a full charge can power the watch for months.
The timepiece is powered by the 7X52 Calibre movement and housed in a bright titanium case. The case has a diameter of 47 mm and is 16.5 mm thick. The timepiece is fitted with a scratch resistant sapphire crystal and has a screwed-in back and screw-locked crown. It has a water resistance of 100 metres and is also magnetic resistant. The timepiece has a two-tone titanium strap. The bezel is made of ceramic as it enhances reception of GPS signals. The power reserve and Daylight Saving Time are displayed at 9 o’clock while 24 hours time is shown in a sub-dial at 6 o’clock. The indexes and hands are coated with Lumibrite for better readability even in the dark. The date is displayed at 3 o’clock and is driven by a perpetual calendar that will work effectively till February 2100.
The Seiko Astron is a revolutionary watch that is the first to combine the features of GPS and solar power within a single case. The GPS receiver not only ensures correct local time wherever you are, but also ensures greater accuracy in timekeeping. I would recommend this watch not only for those who travel frequently and seek a utilitarian purpose from it, but even those who are looking for a highly accurate timepiece that symbolizes an outstanding achievement in watchmaking technology.
Features Writer, The Watch Guide
He is a watch aficionado with an obsessive compulsion for writing. He spends his days exploring the intricacies of modern watchmaking and his evenings reading literary classics.