What Exactly Is a Tactical Watch?

The Gear Patrol Podcast Episode Twenty – Listen Now

tac watches
Gear Patrol

The Gear Patrol Podcast is our weekly roundtable discussion focused on products, their stories, and the culture surrounding them.


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In this episode, Editor Oren Hartov explains the ins and outs of tactical watches–sometimes called military watches. When you hear the terms "dive watch" or "pilot's watch," you can easily picture the product; tactical watches are a much more ambiguous idea.

Hartov explains the origin of the military wristwatch and talks about how far the category has evolved since the first World War. He also shares some insight about his own military experience, and how his relationship with watches changed as a result.


Show Notes:

Episode Navigation:

  • 01:10 – What Is a Tactical Watch?
  • 02:45 – Early Military Watches, WWI and Beyond
  • 11:35 – G-Shock's Genesis and Rise to the Top of the Segment
  • 17:00 – Defining Characteristics of a Tactical Watch
  • 20:00 – Oren Discusses His Service and How it Affected His Relationship to Watches
  • 22:35 – How Quartz and Digital Watch Advancements Affected the Military
  • 25:00 – Other Modern Tactical-Style Watches
  • 30:55 – What Is the Quintessential Tactical Watch

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    The Gear Patrol Podcast is our weekly roundtable discussion focused on products, their stories, and the culture surrounding them.


    Listen on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, our website, or wherever else you get your podcasts. Reach out at podcast@gearpatrol.com.

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