Citizen is a Japanese watch brand which was established in 1918. They were originally known as the Shokosha Watch Research Institute. Over a century later, they have grown to become a watchmaking giant and a household name. They are best known for innovations such as the Chronomaster and atomic watches. This is a brand which has helped to change the way we think about precise timekeeping!
About The Brand: Citizen
The brand was set up pre-World War II between Swiss and Japanese investors. It is now headquartered in Tokyo, and the Citizen Group is now said to be the biggest watchmaker on the planet. This is partly thanks to their recent acquisitions of the Frederique Constant Group (Switzerland), and the Bulova Watch Company (USA). While you may know other watch brands a little better, Citizen is, without doubt, the biggest player in the industry right now.
They are also closely linked with a firm called Miyota. Miyota develops and sells watch movements all over the world, and is said to be the industry leader. They have sold billions of movements, and not just through Citizen.
All For Accuracy
By the 1990s, Citizen had built itself up to be a watch brand that cared deeply about accuracy and innovation. 1993’s atomic timekeeping watches were the first of their kind. You were now able to sync your watch up with atomic clocks for almost flawless accuracy. They can be used to sync with radio clocks and can switch between ‘home’ and ‘world’ zones as you see fit. Not many other watches could do the same, at least at the time!
Similarly, their popular Chronomaster series is impressively accurate. You’ll only be able to buy these watches in Japan wholesale, but they can be bought online and shipped overseas.
Citizen is also a brand which has made strides to develop eco-friendly watches. Their Q&Q SmileSolar watches are completely battery-free. These watches simply charge up using solar rays, meaning they can always stay charged if you wear them outdoors.
The brand’s Eco-Drive line, too, works on a similar system. These are now extremely rare and have been largely discontinued. Some models even charged based on changes in the temperature of the wearer’s skin!
However, early versions of the Eco-Drive raised concerns over overheating and potential explosion. Since then, Citizen has worked hard to create safe, eco-friendly watches. Consumer safety has to come first!
Other Citizen Electronics
Japanese consumers will likely know the Citizen brand for other products, too. They are well-known in their homeland for developing electronic games and calculators. They also had a partnership in the 1990s with Compaq to develop and sell PC notebooks, under the Compaq name. They have even produced TVs and printers.
Citizen continues to grow as the leading force in watch technology worldwide. Working together with Miyota, they continue to dominate the market. But where will their research take them next? What new innovations and ideas can we expect from their R&D? Let’s wait and see.