For those of us who travel a lot, getting in sync with the local time can be a bit of a pain. But the Seiko Astron GPS Solar pretty much fixes this problem with the help of some serious technology. And strangely this is not a smartwatch in the sense that we have started understanding the new segment. The Astron at least looks like a very old fashioned time piece.
Price: Rs 1,95,000
As I said the Astron looks like a old fashioned watch, though a very stylish one at that. It has a full metal body, but is still lightweight. That is because the case and band are made of titanium. With a super hard coating the case as well as the glass look like they will be able to weather some serious wear and tire. Along with the crown, there are four buttons on different sides of the case for different uses. The Lumbrite embedded hour and minute dials are very prominent. There are three more dials in the watch face to be used as a stopwatch. The third of these also helps indicate the charge status and whether the watch is getting GPS reception.
Every time you take the watch out of the box it takes a few second to calibrate itself to the local time. From the light falling on it, the watch can understand whether it is indoors or in a place where it can lock on to the satellites above to adjust time. If you are travelling to a different time zone, you just need to press the top button on the left for 6 seconds for the watch to lock on to the GPS and correct to the local time. I could not test this feature as I was in the same time zone throughout the review period, but I trust this watch to get that right.
However, I found it almost impossible to set the time on my own. Every time you pull the dial out and turn, the hands start moving on their own. Then I realised that this was the manual time zone selection where I could use the second hand to select the zone from the locations marked in the outer ring of the watch. I used this to easily select Delhi and that watch was back in sync soon.
Yes, without the manual you will be almost lost in time with this timepiece. But once you get the hang of it, the Astron is very easy to use. In fact, you don’t need to do any manual calibration while using this watch daily.
Plus, the watch does not need a battery and uses solar energy to charge up. On a full charge it can last up to six months, but it would be a good idea leaving it near a window (a secure one, however) once in a while.
This watch could prove to be a great asset for high fliers who end up waking in different time zones. While your body clock with struggle to adjust to the time, the Seiko Astron will have no such issues and will adjust automatically to the time zone.