When the opportunity arose for me to review the Yes WorldWatch V7, my response was appropriately and enthusiastically “yes.” Had someone asked me if I was familiar with the model, my honest answer would have been “no.” Although the concept of the Yes watch was dreamt up almost 30 years ago, and it came to fruition just before the millennium, this is a brand that was entirely unknown to me. When the founder of the company set out to build his own timepiece, he was weary of the simplicity and lack of functionality in conventional timepieces. Although watches themselves are predominantly defined by their ability to depict the time, there is a slew of additional functions that can escalate it from a one-trick tool to a cornucopia of capability. With this in mind, he was determined to maximize the capabilities of a single timepiece, and the Yes world watch was born.
Given the ability to choose my own configuration for review, I opted for the sky blue, 60min bezel and full titanium bracelet. A few short hours later I received an email that the watch was on its way to my eagerly awaiting wrist. Although I had taken a peek at the website prior to receiving the package in the mail, I am not sure I was fully prepared for the experience of “unboxing” the Yes V7. First of all, this is a piece that puts the “titan” in titanium. According to my trusty calipers, it is roughly 46mm in diameter, 18mm-thick, and a wrist-enveloping 55mm lug-to-lug. It is worth mentioning, for context, that my wrists are around 6.25 inches in diameter, and my go-to watches tend to sit around the 38-40mm mark.
The implementation of grade 2 titanium is a savvy choice that makes sense on multiple levels. First, its featherweight construction gives the ol’ arm muscles a rest when you need to check the time. Secondly, it provides the durability and resilience necessary to truly put the watch to use. Upon viewing the watch head-on, you are met with a dizzying array of details. The analog-digital display features a lone 24-hour hand that corresponds to the numerals on the outer chapter ring. Though it takes some getting used to, once acclimated, this hand provides a quick reference for the general time of day. If specificity is more important to you, the digital display clearly conveys the hour, minutes, and seconds in a straightforward and legible manner.
Having been accompanied by the Yes watch for weeks now, I was pleasantly surprised at how the wearability belies the sheer dimensions. For a watch this size, the design of the lugs incorporates an angle that ensures it is comfortable. Though it might be a stretch for me to say it “disappears on the wrist,” I am comfortable saying that it is much less cumbersome on-wrist than I had anticipated. A word of caution: Just because you cannot always feel it, doesn’t mean it will smoothly glide past shirt cuffs or doorjambs. The latter had a habit of bumping into my model leaving a scratch or two on the satin-finished titanium.
When I stopped to consider where this ana-digi device fits into the watch world and, specifically, who the ideal owner might be, I was initially a bit baffled. If you prefer the simplicity and subtlety of a traditional three-hand dress piece, the Yes watch is almost the antithesis. On the flip side, however, if you want a one-of-a-kind timepiece that has functions to spare, this could be a contender for you. The Yes watch can track solstices and equinoxes. It will automatically adjust for daylight savings. Are you into alarms, light-up displays, moonrises, sunsets, compasses, and lap timers accurate to 1/100th of a second? If so, this has all of that and more. As if there isn’t enough packed into it already, the use of tritium tubes on the nighttime markers and lume on the daytime markers makes for an interesting nocturnal viewing experience (though the lume seemed to glow much better than the tritium tubes, in my experience).
Another interesting aspect of the V7 WorldWatch is that it receives its power from a wireless charging bed. Just one overnight session on this device equates to three months of functionality. This, coupled with a battery that lasts up to five years, makes the watch a strong contender for a “go-anywhere-do-anything” timepiece. In order to put that statement to the test, I went somewhere and did some things. Specifically, I spent a few days with my family at their rural cabin. During this time, I helped with an assortment of chores and tasks. For two days, I did everything with this watch: cooking, making pourover coffee, fishing, placing duck decoys, feeding chickens — you name it. In each circumstance, the watch was up to the task. In fact, it provided more information at a glance than the rest of my watches combined.
At $995 USD, I am not quite ready to decree it a “value proposition,” but I will say that high-end watches with similar functionality and material usage (i.e., sapphire crystal, grade 2 titanium) from big-box brands are going to run far more than the V7 WorldWatch. While it may not be for everyone — and I do not think it was designed to be — it is a fascinating exercise in watch capability. If you take a step back and consider that this model effectively represents one watch lover’s quest to bring to life his vision of the ultimate time-telling tool, it is an astounding bit of tech.