Backlights seem like a standard feature on watches today, but this wasn’t always the case. Until the early ’90s, there was no easy way to read a watch in the dark.
Timex presented a solution to this frustrating problem with its INDIGLO® night-light feature. The invention was the next in a sequence of thoughtful, innovative watch features designed by Timex to respond to changing consumer needs.
Following the successful release of the Timex® Ironman® Triathlon® watch, which became the best-selling watch in America within a year of its release, the company began exploring other innovations that could target gaps in the market. While efficient timekeeping and water-resistance were two main areas Timex developed, it felt that night-lights were a new functional feature for which consumers were searching.
Timex researchers had been experimenting with electroluminescent technology in different consumer applications and decided to try out the technology in timepieces. In 1993, Timex released a series of digital and analog watches with a new INDIGLO® night-light feature. The dials of these INDIGLO® watches were covered with a thin paper film which acted as a light bulb when lit up via battery power.
Timex’s hunch was right — the INDIGLO® night-light was a major success.