Radio controlled watches - YES!!!Wednesday, January 19, 2005
I bemoaned the lack of a day/date display on most radio controlled watches (which set themselves automatically to atomic clocks by radio signals transmitted from the UK or Germany), because I'm both too lazy and too forgetful to remember what date it is, and sometimes even what day. Hey, I like to think that I'm freeing up space in my brain for more important things...
Anyway, I've been looking for such a watch for years. But it seems now that these watches are like buses - none for ages, then three (or two, at least) come along at once. (I wonder if I should bemoan my lack of billions of pounds next, just to see?)
Argos are selling Atomium watches cheap for 7.49 pounds. Rather plastic looking too, you'll agree, but I bought one anyway. Link to pic.
Maplin, that well known purveyor of esoteric electronic bits & bobs, also sells one for 34.99 pounds - but I got one (two in the end, in fact) for less than half that price in their Xmas sale. Quite a nice rounded design, it looks much more elegant in real life than in the official pic.
Ended up returning the Atomiums (yes at first I bought several too). One of them didn't work and the shop claimed it just needed setting (hah, for atomic watches?!). When I got it home and tried everything, of course it still didn't work. Not only that, but their website http://www.atomiumwatches.co.uk/ is down. It's been down since mid-December, when I bought those watches and called their phone helpline to ask when it would be up (not very forthcoming or helpful staff either). Well, guess what? The site is still down. Not a good sign, so I'm glad I returned them.
I'm very happy with the Maplin. Its display is much clearer than the Atomium's, there's a good backlight you can turn on temporarily if needed, and there's even alarm and stopwatch functions as well as dual time. You can get fancier (and a helluva more expensive) radio controlled watches from well known companies like Casio, but they don't show the date/day on the face (and Casio never bothered to reply to my Webform enquiry about newer models). For those who prioritise good features and design and value for money over fashion or brand names, the Maplin is the radio-controlled watch to have, in my book.