Digital Watches

Written by Sierra Rein
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Digital watches function by running a tiny electrical current through a set of quartz crystals. This current causes the crystals to vibrate at an extremely even rate, allowing the time to be displayed in a very accurate manner. These watches require no winding up and were a lot easier to use than motorized clocks. LCD (liquid crystal display) screens were, and still are, easier to read (even from a distance) and are often fitted with nighttime glow buttons when the day grows dark.

The first digital watches emerged from a Pulsar prototype in 1970, designed by Hamilton Watch Company and Electro-Data. Today, digital watches come in all shapes and sizes, from large waterproof sports watches to elegant jewel-encrusted timepieces. Many watch designers have integrated digital timepieces with stopwatches and heart rate monitors, to give coaches and sports enthusiasts a powerful athletic training tool.

Even digital children's watches feature stopwatches, programmable alarms, and electronic calendars. These have become popular and affordable gifts for children. Digital watches are extremely simple to make, and are often used as promotional items for fast food companies and theme parks. However, unlike professional retail watches, these timepieces are often flimsy and cheaper by design and are meant to be disposable in nature. Kids' watches with both analogue and digital displays are great items to purchase if a child has problems telling the time; he can compare both displays and learn how to recognize the relationship between the watch hands.

The Future of Digital Watches

Today, almost 13 percent of all watches in the world market are digital. While the classic clock face will probably never go out of style completely, it is safe to say that the digital interface is here to stay. And, although digital watches are more reliable and cost less, analogue watches are still worn as symbols of status and prestige.

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