Consider for a moment the wristwatch. For centuries (or at least a whole lot of decades), it’s been a mainstay. For some, it was a fashion choice. For others, it was a necessity–people needed a way to know what time it was. But now, with cell phones everywhere, are wristwatches going the way of the typewriter?
Anecdotally, the evidence certainly points that way. In meetings, at malls, and on planes, I notice fewer and fewer people wearing watches and checking their phones instead. I did some research on the Web to see if the statistics backed up the observations.
I’m hardly the first to postulate this theory. Back in 2005, the St. Petersburg Times ran a story on the growing trend of young people shunning watches in favor of phones. A story from ABC explains that watch sales fell 10% from 2005 to 2006 among the “price category most frequently purchased by teens and young adults.”
Slate hosts an interesting article that focuses on Fossil watches–in 2005 and 2006, sales fell with a moderate thud. And MSNBC reports that nearly two-thirds of teenagers never wear a watch. Makes sense–as the article points out, you can now get the time not just from your phone, but from your computer, your cable box, and the clock in the car.
I also found an official UK report on watch sales. It’s a little dense, but from what I can tell, they’re on the decline. Whether that’s due to cell phones, the economy, or both, I’m not really sure.
What about you guys? Do you still wear a watch or has your cell phone rendered it obsolete? Please leave a comment below.
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