November 1974: Release of the CASIOTRON electronic wristwatch

CASIOTRON

After the success of the Casio Mini, Casio was secure in its position at the top of the electronic calculator industry. In order to strengthen its earnings base, the company decided to diversify its business by producing timepieces. At first glace, electronic calculators and timepieces seem to be completely different product categories, but at that time, timepieces were undergoing a technological revolution from mechanical to quartz mechanisms. A type of quartz timepiece, digital chronometers consist of a counter that measures pulses from a crystal oscillator, in other words, a simple adding machine that shows a running calculation of each second. This was a product that would allow Casio to maximize the LSI technology it had developed for electronic calculators. Considering this, it was only natural for Casio to branch out into the business of timepieces.


However, the Japanese clock and watch industry in the mid-70s was closely integrated from the production to sales levels, making it very difficult for new manufacturers to enter the market. Casio made intensive efforts to overcome this barrier, and in October 1974 it released a computerized watch, the CASIOTRON. This watch not only showed the hours, minutes, and seconds, but also had a unique function that could automatically determine the number of days in a month.

Main functions
Change display
(Hours, minutes, 10 seconds, seconds, AM/PM __
month, date, day of the week)
Automatic calendar
Display
FE liquid crystal digital display
Main components
Crystal oscillator, C MOS-LSI
Price
¥58,000 - ¥65,000