Components for designing a digital watch

Thread Starter

dhandoko

Joined Nov 18, 2015
3
What goes into a digital watch? I'm looking to design/program a watch with some special timing functions geared towards test-taking for students.

What kind of chip should I use? Where can I outsource the design and programming of the chip? Would appreciate some help!
 

takao21203

Joined Apr 28, 2012
3,682
You need a C language script.
Can be 200 lines or many pages with complicated options.

You shouldnt use this technology to restrict the students a lot to find about some weird pecularities of a clock movement.
 

RichardO

Joined May 4, 2013
2,273
What is in a watch: Microcontoller, software, buttons or touch screen, display, power supply, case.

Custom design is expensive. Thousands of dollars each for electronic design, software design and design of the case. If a custom display is needed then that will add another couple of thousand dollars. About ten thousand dollars total as a rough estimate.

By the way, what is your target for the cost of the watch? How man do you think you will have made?
 

wayneh

Joined Sep 9, 2010
16,102
It would make a lot more sense - to me - to do what you want in software for existing watch products. Getting yourself into the wearable tech market is a multi-million dollar project.

You need Xcode - and I suppose a Mac to run it on - to program for an Apple watch. Not sure what you need for the other products on the market.
 

Thread Starter

dhandoko

Joined Nov 18, 2015
3
So we're looking to produce a cheap digital watch, and here's the current competition:

http://www.amazon.com/SAT-Pacing-Watch-Testing-Timers/dp/B00CHQSKH0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1447885120&sr=8-1&keywords=SAT+watch&pebp=1447885125516&perid=0K4AT5RNNSNGQAGVRSQS

We want a better display and to change around the software (to time multiple tests rather than just 1). Cost is hopefully around ~$15/unit and we're probably going to make ~2-5k units. We're going to use a stock watch case, so no custom design needed. But the software and electronics I'm guessing we will need to develop ourselves?

So yes, @wayneh, ideally what we're going for is just to change the software and display of existing watch products. Are there programmers that can do just this piece? Do any of you know of any recommended digital watch manufacturers?
 

Papabravo

Joined Feb 24, 2006
12,405
I would be surprised if there is a watchmaker anywhere in the world that would give you the time of day for 5000 units. They won't sell you cases, or guts, or IP or anything. If it is not done in-house it is not done at all. The same thing happens with LCD screens. It is cheaper to buy laptops and throw away everything except the screen.
 

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,815
5K or 2.5K. I don't know why anyone would make the investment. Have you looked? Few people wear watches anymore. The people that do wear one, many of those wear one with an analog face. Why would you buy a watch specific to timing SATs when you can download an app for one?
 

Thread Starter

dhandoko

Joined Nov 18, 2015
3
Couple points:

1) We designed another test taking watch that was analog, and our manufacturer did a minimum order of 1000 pieces. Definitely possible to produce in low volume, though price per unit is relatively high.
2) There's a demand for these because you want something you can bring into the test room (you cannot time with a smartphone during a test)

But back to the point - can someone help explain what components of the watch we are supposed to modify and what components we can have a manufacturer do?
 

joeyd999

Joined Jun 6, 2011
4,239
There are fine watchmakers in Switzerland that'll make 'em one at a time.

But it'll cost you.
 

Papabravo

Joined Feb 24, 2006
12,405
...

But back to the point - can someone help explain what components of the watch we are supposed to modify and what components we can have a manufacturer do?
Without a design for the watch that is a pretty tall order. Aren't you kinda like the students who show up from time to time asking us to do their homework because they just don't get it?
 

mcgyvr

Joined Oct 15, 2009
5,394
I don't get it..
One requirement for any SAT test room is a working clock on the wall?
 

Alec_t

Joined Sep 17, 2013
10,362
Even at $15 a pop I don't see many students buying into this :(. I imagine most would prefer to spend their full time answering questions rather than peering at a watch or playing with buttons.
 

wayneh

Joined Sep 9, 2010
16,102
And, as soon as smart watches become more mainstream, ALL watches will be banned from test rooms just like smartphones already are.
 

GopherT

Joined Nov 23, 2012
7,983
Even at $15 a pop I don't see many students buying into this :(. I imagine most would prefer to spend their full time answering questions rather than peering at a watch or playing with buttons.
And, as soon as smart watches become more mainstream, ALL watches will be banned from test rooms just like smartphones already are.
Interestingly, the SAT watch ($44.99) and ACT watch ($45.99) seem to be quite popular". Ranking in the top 1800 items sold on amazon under Business And Industrial section. I am, of course, joking about the popularity. But the price is there. Any family willing to spend $1200 for a prep course will likely drop $50 on a watch to help little Jacob or Emily score 20 more points on their test.
 
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