H. Moser & Cie. Swiss Alp Watch — A sort of Swiss Apple Watch
During the holidays, I read an article where the author has asked influential watch journalists and retailers, what was the most important watch news of 2015 (if I’ll find the link, I’ll put it up here). What really shocked me, was that almost all of them considered the Apple watch the most important event that happened to the horological world in 2015… Really?
It seems that this sentiment is shared by several Swiss watch brands that rush to launch their version of smartwatches. Last March, when I saw H. Moser & Cie teasing us with an upcoming smartwatch, deep inside I felt discouraged. If even a small brand like Moser, would do such a thing, all hope is lost… It turned out that they just wanted to poke fun of the smartwatch frenzy, and on the promised date, they revealed the Endeavour Perpetual Calendar Funky Blue, Reference 1341-0207, an 18-carat white gold “smartwatch”. It had no Bluetooth, nor WiF, but it sure brought a huge smile on my face.
The people at Moser seem to have more jokes up their sleeves, and the latest, thanks to a perfect timing, has made a huge splash. When everyone’s attention is turned to tech blogs to catch up with the latest gadgets from CES, H. Moser & Cie. revealed to the world the Swiss Alp Watch, that looks like a copy of the… Apple Watch…
Same shape, same size, same wire-lugs, only that the dial is not LCD and you can’t change it, you are stuck to a “simple” three hands dial, with a small second complication. While other smartwatches try to mimic mechanical watches, H. Moser & Cie, is borrowing from the most popular smartwatch to create a 100% traditional Swiss hand-wound watch.
It’s powered by the in-house hand-wound HMC 324 calibre, beating at 18,000 vph, with hacking seconds, 4 days of power reserve, a power reserve indicator visible on the back, interchangeable Moser escapement, Original Straumann Hairspring with stabilised Breguet overcoil, gold escapement wheel and pallet fork, with the movement and components hand-finished and decorated.
The brand motto of H. Moser & Cie. is “Very rare”, which is true for the Swiss Alp watch too, it’s limited to 50 pieces, at the price of $24,900 USD.
And just in case, anyone would misunderstand the intention behind this watch, here is Eduard Meylan, owner and CEO of Moser presenting the Swiss Alp Watch in the usual Apple fashion:
I find it funny and sad, how my favourite technology blogs got this story all wrong. All they see is that a workshop in the Swiss Alps, that they never heard of, dared to poke fun of their icon, the untouchable taboo, Apple, and its smartwatch…
According to the Verge, you have to be a snob to buy this watch:
And who knows, even for $24,900 there are bound to be some customers who will buy the thing just to be able to correct people. “An Apple Watch? Oh, no, I wouldn’t dare: this is an Alp Watch.”
Here is the conclusion of Engadget:
If you want to buy a Swiss Alp Watch — it doesn’t have apps like a smartwatch, but it should last longer — the company is selling them for $24,900, which is even higher than the gold Apple Watch Edition. Only 50 are being made though, so you’ll need to act fast — that is, if Apple doesn’t shut down the whole operation first. Tim Cook, if you’re reading this, you know what they say: ‘imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.’
Oh! Somone shamelessly copied an Apple product! The problem is that it’s not Apple who invented this watch case, or the wire lugs…
Android Authority seems to be worried about H. Moser & Cie. having a hard time to find 50 clients, who would buy this expensive statement:
Whether anyone will actually buy one of the limited edition Swiss Alp Watches we can’t say. But with a $25,000 price tag and a limited run of only 50 timepieces, the Swiss Alp Watch is also borrowing Apple’s exclusivity angle as well. How will this all play out? Only time will tell.
If I would have 25 grands spare for a watch, I would not hesitate to go with the Swiss Alp Watch. Since the experts consider the Apple Watch to be the most important watch of 2015, then the Swiss Alp Watch is the most important response to the Apple Watch. It’s a historic piece, it’s a wake-up call to the world, it’s time to stop treating a mass-produced tech gadget as an ultimate masterpiece of chic and luxury.
Since smartwatches are supposed to convince the younger generation to wear something on their wrist, the Swiss Alp Watch managed to open the tech bloggers’ eyes to the concept of mechanical watches…
I can only endorse Mr Meylan’s advice: get a life, and upgrade to a mechanical watch!
Reference 8324-0200, white gold model, signature fumé dial, kudu leather strap, limited edition of 50 pieces
Solid 18 carat white gold
Dimensions: 38.2 x 44.0 mm / height: 10.3 mm
See-through sapphire crystal case-back
Screw-in crown adorned with an “M”
Fumé with sunburst pattern
Leaf-shaped hour and minute hands
Small second offset at 6 o’clock
In-house hand-wound HMC 324 calibre
Dimensions: 32.0 mm x 36.0mm / height: 4.80 mm
Frequency: 18,000 Vib/h
Power reserve: minimum 4 days
Moser teeth for all wheels and pinions
Interchangeable Moser escapement
Original Straumann Hairspring® with stabilised Breguet overcoil
Gold escapement wheel and pallet fork
Movement and components hand-finished and decorated
Hours and minutes
Power reserve indication
Beige hand-stitched kudu leather, with a leather lining in Moser green
18-carat solid white gold pin buckle engraved with the Moser logo