Evolution of Wristwatches

In the year 1906, the advancement of wristlets took a different direction with the innovation of the elastic and stretchy bracelet. Furthermore, the introduction of wire loops welded onto small, open-faced portable watch gears allowed the leather bands to be effortlessly attached. This enhanced their employment in military battles thus marking a turning point in the advancement of wristwatches for males.

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Regardless of their achievement in battle, the acceptance of the wristwatch was not yet universal as they were still restricted to the models of ladies. These watches did not make it to the main market till some decades later. This was when militias from around the globe congregated in Europe to assist in conquering the German Empire during 1914-1919. Based on the tactical lessons obtained from the Boer War, the call for dependable and perfect wristwatches was on the rise. They were no longer regarded as an innovation but were instantly taken as wartime requirements. This prompted companies to work hard in order to keep up with the increased demand. 

Wilsdorf & Davis Ltd, formed in the year 1905 and later on rebranded to “The Rolex Watch Company Ltd” in the year 1915 was among the major beneficiaries of this high demand. Subsequent to the Great War, several fighters went home with memento trench watches. They were named after the trench fighting where they were utilized. The community views were abruptly changed once the war heroes adorned the wristwatches. They were no longer considered as feminine. Consequently, no individual would dare to regard these courageous men as being anything else (Haussermann, 2011).


Over decades, watch firms have gradually added extra prototypes to their lists. By the middle of 1930s, the companies had accounted for sixty four percent of all the watches produced. It has been an uphill task, but the wristwatch has lastly arrived. They are now precise, waterproof and reliable. The achievement of the wristwatch was born out of need. Rolex has kept up with this culture by producing a chain of “Professional watches” since the early 1950s (Pannier, 2001). These prototypes comprising the Submariner, Turn-O-Graph, Explorer, and Milgauss were invented out of need as they encompassed features and qualities that were vital for a particular duty or vocation.

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Due to its design, variants of the Submariner model have successively been delivered to quite a number of forces including the Royal Canadian Navy, the British Navy and Marine, as well as the United States Navy Seals. In addition, lots of firms such as Panerai, Benrus, and Omega have delivered specific field-oriented watch samples for military obligation. Therefore, the function of the wristwatch appears to have revolved. With the overall public being enlightened on digital and high-tech devices, the standard automated wristwatch has once more found its place on the wrists of individuals just as those courageous fighters who applauded it some a hundred years earlier.

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