Is Tissot's first touchscreen watch a "Miracle" or an "Innovation"?
That is an Arabic Localization Question!
The first watch with a touch screen is older than what we think!
Today smartwatches have become a common product. Most of us know Apple iWatch, Samsung Gear S, and many other newcomers to the arena of wearable pieces of technology and the other IoT technologies.
So, it is easy to understand how advanced they are. But can you imagine how a pioneering smartwatch appearing back in 1999 would be received by the customers?
Almost 21 years ago the Swiss watchmaker Tissot introduced its first watch with a touch screen with it’s 6 innovative functions. It provides to its user the following functions: weather forecast, an altitude meter, a chronograph, a compass, an alarm, and a thermometer, that made it a great companion for athletes and mountain climbing lovers.
Unexpected Arabic Localization Issue!
At that time, I was translating the Arabic marketing and training materials of all Tissot watches including T-Touch, it was quite justified, that Tissot described this watch as a “Technical Miracle”. This looked logical and I translated it in the same way into Arabic.
Could you imagine that cultural differences could lead to sensitivities regarding such a “common” word? Yes, it can!
Actually, when the Arabic translation of the brochure was sent to the local dealerships in the Gulf to check it, the Saudi marketing team commented that “Technical Miracle” might not be accepted by some Saudis due to some cultural backgrounds that connect the word “miracle” only with something done by Allah\God. So, they asked to change this word.
As a solution, I used the description “Technical Innovation” in the final Arabic translation, which was completely ok and not culturally-sensitive for them.
I’ve been translating lots of Arabic content for the target audience in all Arab countries for long years, never the less, you can never expect such type of hidden issues due to different cultures!
Now, after 21 years, in its “English” marketing materials, Tissot is not describing T-Touch as a “Technical Miracle” anymore, but just as “an amazing technological breakthrough”.
So, it is always a good practice to let a local representative give you a feedback about the marketing materials or any other type of content you’re going to use for a definite target market, especially in the Middle East region, or any other region with a different culture than yours. Better safe, than sorry!
T-Touch in Mission Impossible Movie!
Do you know that the Tissot T-Touch Expert Solar watch appeared in a Mission Impossible movie and used as a bomb timer?