What Is a PDA Watch?

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

A personal data assistant or PDA watch is a small device that provides many of the functions of handheld devices, with the benefit of the inclusion of a wrist strap that allows the device to be worn like a wristwatch. While larger than a standard watch, a wrist PDA will often provide features that are much like a mobile device with wireless capability. Different designs for the PDA watch include the ability to make and receive telephone calls, browse the Internet, receive and send email, and maintain address books and other basic functions available with other personal data assistant equipment. While versatile, options for PDA watches remain somewhat limited and can be more costly than other devices that provide many of the same functions.

Man with hands on his hips
Man with hands on his hips

One of the benefits of a PDA watch is that the device provides access to mobile computing without the need to actually hold some type of tablet, laptop, or larger handheld device. Along with displaying time, the watch is capable of easily connecting with a wireless network and allowing the end user to perform a variety of tasks. Some designs include the use of a stylus to touch icons on the display screen, including the virtual keyword that makes it possible to browse the Internet or search addresses and other data stored directly on the PDA watch.

Some of the more popular functions including on a PDA watch include Internet access, GPS capabilities, and an equitable amount of data storage. Many of these watches include features like calculators, graphical displays, and barometers. Some designs also include simple notepads as well as the ability to download and display different formats of word processing documents. The exact range of features and functions will vary from one model to the next, with the scope of those features often determining the sale price for a specific model.

The advent of the PDA watch occurred around the turn of the 21st century. While the first models were somewhat cumbersome, advances in technology have made it possible to reduce the overall size and weight of these types of devices. Those same advances have made it possible to add more functions and features, as well as include a larger amount of memory in the latest generation of the watches. This has made the idea of owning and using a PDA watch more practical for a wider range of consumers, although the cost for most models is still prohibitive for many people.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

After many years in the teleconferencing industry, Michael decided to embrace his passion for trivia, research, and writing by becoming a full-time freelance writer. Since then, he has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including wiseGEEK, and his work has also appeared in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and several newspapers. Malcolm’s other interests include collecting vinyl records, minor league baseball, and cycling.

You might also Like

Readers Also Love

Discussion Comments


@kentuckycat - I've seen a wrist watch PDA, but I haven't had a chance to play with one.

From what I saw, it is basically an LCD screen with a few icons that you can select (calendar, phone, addresses, etc.). Unfortunately, I didn't see one that had a browser. I agree with you, though, that it would be quite the small screen.

I don't see this becoming the latest craze, but I can see watch phones and PDAs becoming one of those things that are worth a lot of money to collectors in the future because of their rarity.


Wow, this is very interesting considering I've never seen or heard of these before. The idea reminds me of the calculator watches of the 70s and 80s. Something tells me these are a little more useful, though.

The articles says the screens are larger than a normal watch, but how big are they? It seems like using the internet would be difficult with a screen the size of a wristwatch. Also, what kind of screen do they have.

It seems like an interesting idea, but I'm not sure about the practicality of a phone watch.

Post your comments
Forgot password?