Smart Watches


My employer has this add-on to the health plan where, if you wear a pedometer, you get money in your health spending account. If you also provide sleep tracking, you get even more money. It doesn’t seem to care (currently) about your pulse.

I don’t have any huge issue with this plan. But I’d like to, as much as possible, have this not be at the foreground of my day-to-day life.

After a lot of thinking, I wound up realizing that the main consideration for me was battery life! Believe it or not, all the other doodads and gizmos weren’t actually that important. So my requirements list is basically:

  1. Tells me the time
  2. Can go for a long time without needing to be recharged
  3. Counts my steps and automatically puts them in this health plan thing
  4. Also tell the health plan how long I sleep

I wound up going back to a watch I had a few years ago, which has a month-long battery life between recharges. If you turn off the thing where it vibrates when you get a phone call, I think it will go even longer. It also has the advantage of telling me the time the old-fashioned way: with hands. So I can just glance at it and see what time it is, without needing to flick my wrist or get into a dark enough area or whatever.

I started writing this article in November, and I’m finishing it in January. I’ve been wearing that watch for a couple months now and it’s no big deal. It feels kind of silly writing about it. But this is something a lot of people spend time and money thinking about in 2022!

Update: 2023-Sep-25

Since switching jobs, I’ve been wearing a Casio F-91W. I got it for $7 about 10 years ago. It tells me the time, date, and weekday. It has an alarm, a stopwatch, and a barely-usable light. It’s been running on the battery it came with since I got it.

Every 4 years you have to tell it about leap year.

Apparently, my favorite watch is one I only have to think about every 4 years.