In Depth

#SpeedyTuesday: Omega's Instagram-inspired timepiece

In a thoroughly modern move, the watchmaker pays tribute to its online admirers with a limited-edition version of the iconic Speedmaster

The exclusive world of high-end horology has long been reluctant to embrace the new digital age – in fact, many of its key tenets could be seen as an affront to an industry that prides itself on its centuries-old heritage and a defiantly traditional approach to handcraftsmanship. 

Despite this, recent years have seen a rising number of brands dip their toes in the waters of ecommerce. It is therefore surprising that one of the big guns, Omega, has never made the jump – until now. And while it cannot be said that it's diving in headfirst, this hesitant step could signal a new mode of retailing for the watch behemoth.

In a pleasing confluence of old and new, the move centres on the release of its latest Speedmaster, which pays tribute to this important and popular timepiece while including a nod to that of another phenomenon - its online fan base. Its name, Speedy Tuesday, originated with Robert-Jan Broer, founder of the influential website Fratello Watches, when he first used the two words on Facebook back in 2012 when posting a picture of his own "Speedy". Since then, the #SpeedyTuesday hashtag has been used more than 42,000 times on Instagram alone by enthusiasts, helped along by articles about the watch published – you guessed it – every Tuesday on fratellowatches.com.

The new limited-edition timepiece, priced at £4,100, is able to be reserved online via the Omega website, although you'll now have to join a waiting list if you're hoping to get your hands on one of the 2,012 that will be released later this year.

Beyond Omega's novel approach, there are a number of other reasons why the Speedy Tuesday is set to become a sought-after collector's item. It draws design inspiration from the chic and sporty 1978 Speedmaster Alaska III model produced for NASA, which required a watch that was anti-reflective and highly legible for its space missions. Also making a comeback is the "reverse panda" dial; debuted in 1966, it sees the striking and simple combination of white subdials set against a black dial and matte black aluminium bezel.

omegawatches.com

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