Forget about the upcoming smartwatches from companies such as Apple and Samsung, look at one of the latest models coming from highly respected Swiss watchmaker Breitling which features an inbuilt emergency beacon.
For people who travel a lot, or who are placed in dangerous situations, the Breitling Emergency II Chronograph has a dual channel emergency satellite transmitter that activates with a twist and a pull.
The Emergency II is an improved version of the original Emergency watch which only transmitted on a single analog frequency. If the wearer is stranded in an unknown location, the signal can be tracked.
The watch suffers a little in regards to the shape, being a little heavier than other models in the Breitling range. The case is made from titanium and holds a PLB Category 2 beacon micro transmitter. This caused the company a lot of work when they had to fit it inside a watch casing but changes were made to the design. To get the transmitter to work for 24 hours, there also has to be a battery fitted, and one that can also be recharged.
Due to the dual band transmission the Emergency II watch needs a draw between 30 and 3000 mW. There is a rechargeable lithium ion battery inside the watch, separate from the movement. The company supply a charger and tester case to ensure the transmitter is working properly.
The beacon is turned on by unscrewing the right hand antenna cover. This also unscrews the left hand cover and when the antenna is pulled free and extended, the signal is activated.
The signals are transmitted on a digital 406mhz that goes out for 0.44 seconds every 50 seconds and the second is an analog signal on 121.5mhz which lasts 0.75 seconds and is transmitted every 2.25 seconds. The integrated antenna system is designed to be used in any position, so even if the wearer is hanging upside down from a rock cliff, it will still transmit. It is made in two sections so the transmitter can select between part or all of the antenna system which switching between frequencies.
This International Cospas Sarsat system has saved 26,000 lives since 1985. This is based around a network of satellites in low altitude earth orbit (LEOSAR) and in geostationary orbit (GEOSAR) along with ground stations and coordinating centers around the world.
Watch lovers will be more interested in the movement, which is a Breitling thermocompensated SuperQuartz Caliber 76 which has achieved COSC standards. There is also a 12/24 hour analog and LCD digital display, end of life battery indicator and 1/100th second chronograph, timer, multilingual calender and secondary time zone. Water resistant is offered to 167ft with a compass scale on the front. Dials are also available in Cobra yellow, intrepid orange and Volcano black.
The pricing is around $17,000 USD, with an extra option for $1,000, a Titanium strap.
Kitguru says: If you lead a dangerous life, this is the watch to get.