Why do we wear wristwatches?

Author's Note

I was interested in this topic because I've largely stopped wearing a watch. One reason is that my watch uses batteries faster than it should, but another is that I almost always have my smartphone available and use it as a timepiece. I took an informal survey by posting a question on Facebook. Out of about 30 responses, I found that people who tend to use their cell phones a lot are more likely to rely on them for the time. People who don't like cell phones or tend to misplace them still use watches. And then there are the people, mostly middle age, who say they simply "feel naked" without a wristwatch on.

The biggest revelation that came to me during my research was how short the history of wristwatches is. The generation that grew up in the mid-20th century is the main generation that grew up with wristwatches.. Their grandparents may not have had watches, and their parents probably did not until they were adults. And their children often never got into the habit of wearing wristwatches, relying instead on cell phones and other technology.

Even though I rarely wear my watch, I was heartened by evidence I found that watches might survive changing times.

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