OK, things are heating up around the upcoming horological event of the year – Baselworld. The brands are publishing press releases and watch nerds from near and far are alternating between speculation on new releases and scouring the interwebz for any news at all.
Every year the brands push the expectations bar higher. That is, every year they outdo themselves and each other’s previous year’s efforts. Of course, this causes an interesting situation. In their efforts to jump up yet another level, every once in a while a brand stumbles badly – at least in the eyes of the neo-cognoscenti.
And in fact, two prime examples of the phenomenon occurred just last year. Two very nice watches – classic designs really – caught the brunt of social media commentators everywhere.
The first was the Patek Philippe ref. 5524G, Calatrava Pilot Travel Time (shown above). Now, I loved the watch – and I’m not ashamed to say so. But a lot of people thought it was a rip off of the Zenith vibe. One commentator I saw even compared it to Fossil’s design vibe.
The Omega Master Chronometer Globemaster, released at Baselworld 2015.
And of course, the other watch to raise the ire of watch nerds everywhere – including both Rolex lovers and Rolex haters – was the Omega Master Chronometer Globemaster. Most compared it to the Rolex Datejust (yes, I had that thought too). And a lot of people were talkin’ smack about it on social media.
This year? What will the brands produce this year that the great unwashed watch geeks of the world will howl about?
Stay tuned over the next couple of weeks. I’m gonna try to keep my fingers on the Baselworld pulse and tell you all about it.