Watches

The New Modular 45 From TAG Heuer Is A Smartwatch Unlike Any Other

Transform the timepiece to your heart's desire.

BY Daniel Goh | May 15, 2017 | Feature

For a fraction of a second in the timeline of the watchmaking industry, smartwatches were somewhat of a buzzword. Across the Swiss horology landscape, brands dabbled with “connected” watches and “smart” offerings to gauge how the market would receive them; but it was only TAG Heuer that went the whole nine yards and announced a big partnership with Google and Intel for a full-fledged smartwatch: the TAG Heuer Connected.

What might have seemed like a risky move then (under the leadership of Jean-Claude Biver, it’s expected almost) looks to be paying off now, as TAG Heuer launch the second evolution of the Connected with the new Modular 45? Because of this unique partnership with the tech giants, they make the motherboards in Switzerland, and assemble and test the watch at their manufacture in La Chauxde-Fonds. This effectively means 60 percent of production is conducted in Switzerland; thus, affording the watch the label “Swiss Made”.

So, what does a Swiss Made smartwatch do that others can’t? Well, for one, it taps into TAG Heuer’s extensive almost) looks to be paying off now, as TAG Heuer launch the second evolution of the Connected with the new Modular 45. Because of this unique partnership with the tech giants, they make the motherboards in Switzerland, and assemble and test the watch at their manufacture in La Chauxde-Fonds. This effectively means 60 percent of production is conducted in Switzerland; thus, affording the watch the label “Swiss Made”.

So, what does a Swiss Made smartwatch do that others can’t? Well, for one, it taps into TAG Heuer’s extensive manufacture to give consumers a case and strap quality that is synonymous with the brand. This is compounded by the fact that the watch was developed to be modular, meaning you can easily swap out the straps, the lugs, and even the bezel, and select from a wide range of materials including rubber and leather for the straps, to steel, 18k rose gold, ceramic and titanium for the rest. When they launched the first Connected, TAG Heuer gave their customers the option to swap out the electronic module for a mechanical movement after two years (presumably because technology has a funny way of turning what’s cutting edge today into an expensive paperweight tomorrow).

This interesting proposition lives on with the Modular 45, only this time, you don’t have to wait. Available at launch is the Calibre 5 mechanical module, along with the Calibre 02T tourbillon movement, ready to be swapped into the watch at a moment’s notice. This gives the wearer the functionality of a smartwatch, and the ability to transform it into the mechanical wonder that we all know and love at the drop of a dime. And with this, TAG Heuer live up to their claim of being connected to eternity.

This article was first published in the print edition of Esquire Singapore, May 2017.


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