Luxury Watchmaker Breitling Adds Its First Timepieces to a Blockchain


Arianee, a French company whose aim is to build “perpetual relationships between brands and owners.” The solution ties the watch’s warranty to the watch itself and not to any paper trail, allowing owners to have their pieces serviced by authorized dealers based on the watch’s digital signature.

james-bond-watch-breitling-top-time-thunderball
Sean Connery wore a unique version of the Top Time in the movie Thunderball.
Source: ManOfMany

The Arianee blockchain combines permissioned and permissionless elements through its use of a consensus mechanism it’s calling “proof-of-authority.” It is permissionless in the sense that users who want to sell products to one another can interact with the blockchain, but the verifying of the ledger and issuance of tokens is controlled by the participating businesses.

Breitling, founded in 1884, is being a good sport about the project, saying the system allows users to “engage with the brand anonymously” and take part in “new online services ranging from advanced clienteling to a revolutionary care program.”

The watch nerd will note that the Top Time has a linear scale on its bezel instead of a tachymeter. This is called a decimal scale and was offered on some watches in the 1960s. It was, apparently, used for scientific timings, splitting each minute into 100 sections rather than the usual 60.

The watch costs $4,990, or about 80 percent of the current price of one bitcoin. Breitling, one of the first manufacturers to offer online sales, is shipping the Top Time this month.

Disclosure strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

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