Thinnest Watch

The Bulgari Octo Finissimo Ultra is the world’s thinnest mechanical watch at just 1,8 milimetres. The manufacturer describes it as follows.

With an astonishing total thickness of 1.80 mm, the Octo Finissimo Ultra is far more than just the world’s thinnest mechanical watch. It expresses the desire to go beyond the limits of normality by playing with extremes. Sporting a monochromatic look in sandblasted titanium, the timepiece matches its ultra-thin case with an integrated bracelet, only 1.50 mm thick, while the dial invites a closer look into the details of the mechanism. A unique QR code engraving offers the ability to connect to a NFT and the metaverse, bridging the mechanical world with that of a digital dimension.

Octo Finissimo Ultra watch with mechanical manufacture ultra-thin movement, manual winding, regulator display, BVL180 caliber, 28’800vph (4hz) and 50 hours of power reserve. 40 mm case (1.80 mm thick) in sandblasted titanium, tungsten carbide main plate, hour and minute regulator displays in black PVD hands, second wheel with black index indicator, winding and time-setting wheels in stainless steel, stainless steel ratchet engraved with a unique QR code linked to an exclusive NFT artwork, sandblasted titanium bracelet with an integrated folding buckle. Limited edition of 10 Pieces

If all ten aren’t already sold out, it can be yours for only US$ 440,000. And remember, you’re not just buying a watch, you’re acquiring a unique QR code on the big gear that links it through a non-fungible token to the metaverse! This may seem a limited number of buzzwords for almost half a million bucks, but it’s hard to fit any more into 1.8 mm.

Here is a one minute music video of construction of the watch.

Here is a discussion of the watch with Bulgari CEO Jean-Christophe Babin.

And this is an interview with chief designer Fabrizio Buonamassa.

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At 5.5mm, the Octo Finissimo Automatic is no slouch either. (review)

And the 13,000 biden-bucks MSRP is, if not accessible, not eye wateringly expensive. Jewelry and fashion brands that branch out into so-called haute horlogerie almost never manage to impress in terms of watch creativity beyond slapping a logo on an OEM movement. Bulgari seems to be an exception in this space, perhaps more so than Montblanc.

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The ultra-thin crystal (0.30mm) is glued to the bezel. It rests on two silicone pads placed on screws (visible at the periphery of the barrel at approx. 3 o’clock and 6 o’clock) to preserve all functions in the event of a shock.

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A favorite of mine the Drive de Cartier … 6.6mm thick automatic. I find the steel model’s dimensions and aspect create a very appealing shape (review)

At approx. $1,000/mm one could say it’s almost affordable…

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The QR code is profoundly ugly and the sharp edges and absence of any curved lines on it mars the rest of the dial. Like much so-called “modern art” it aligns with the intentional display of ugly dissonance and negation of that which is beautiful.

Anyone seriously considering spending the ungodly amount of seashells this thing sells for would be better of with a snapshot of their bank account balance tied to their wrist instead - almost as much signaling at a fraction of the assault on beauty the QR code represents.

Most Bulgari consumer products are marred by the very visible BVLGARI logo prominently displayed and this is an instance where that would have been a much better idea.

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I was curious about the QR code on the big (“barrel” gear).

bulgari_QR

I scanned it with the Android “QR & Barcode Scanner” app, and found it simply decoded to the URL:

https://octo-ultra.bulgari.com/home

When you go there, it takes you through a weird sequence of pages through which you advance by using the scroll button on the mouse, which is a wacky interface. Finally, you get to a page which reveals the NFT (apparently the NFT is not encoded in the QR code, and all the QR codes are identical, which makes sense since I wondered how they would get the gear to balance if each had a different code). The NFT is an animation which looks like cubes of metal self-assembling into the watch. It’s difficult to describe; see for yourself.

After you get past that, there’s the nerdy NFT page with:

Sending the contract address to PolygonScan (which you can do by clicking it above) reveals a history with 14 transactions and a link to the “OCTO_FINISSIMO_ULTRA_NFT_#0” token tracker page, also at PolygonScan. I have no idea what any of this means.

How this is supposed to connect to the Metaverse, whatever that may be, is unclear.

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