Zihotch Showa Retro Wrist Watch Turns Back the Clock!

Looking for a cool new watch?

From the clever folks at Meiwa Denki comes the Zihotch No Dial Plate But Tell you Time! Funny Wrist Watch - a self-descriptive name if there ever was!

Looking a lot like an imagined predecessor to Dick Tracy's trademark wrist radio or maybe the first Soviet wristwatch, this somewhat clunky but oh so funky watch saves neither time nor labor yet will certainly make you the center of attention when you need to know the time. A simple glance at normal watches is all it takes to know the time - not so the Zihotch Showa Retro Wrist Watch. Looking at it is only the beginning...



What meets your wondering eyes is not an LCD screen; not even a traditional clock face. Instead, the Zihotch resembles a shrunken version of a rotary dial telephone much like those that were phased out in the 60's when Touch Tone was phased in. Just dial 117 and the current time is announced through a speaker in the center of the dial.

Ring up a wrong number, however, and a frighteningly familiar voice from phone calls past drones "We are sorry, the number you have dialed is not in service. Please check and call again...." Positively eerie!



You can also dial other numbers like 107 or 110 to hear what Meiwa Denki refers to as "other funny messages", though an notice at the website advises that "This product is restricted to a person who understands Japanese humor". Whether that means the so-called humor IS Japanese or is IN Japanese, one cannot say.

The Zihotch can also be programmed to give you a wake-up call, which can be cancelled by dialing 184. Pretty high-tech for something that looks so old school! Can we expect a touch-tone upgrade at some point in the bizarro future?

The Zihotch No Dial Plate But Tell you Time! Funny Wrist Watch comes in Pale Blue, Modern Black, Red and Ivory, includes a matching strap and is available for around $55.00 plus shipping from Strapya World or can be bought at Meiwa Denki's section at Loft Shibuya in Tokyo.

Steve Levenstein
Japanese Innovations Writer

May 19, 2007
by Anonymous (not verified)

The retro watch

is, well, untimely.

May 19, 2007
by Anonymous Mrs. Beeman (not verified)

I Don't See Something Like That Selling Very Well

I doubt that anyone truly got attached to a rotary phone and identified with it or got depressed when it was replaced by the touchtone phone (clearly an upgrade).  In fact, I think most--if not all--people gladly switched to the touchtone and couldn't wait to dispose of the obsolete rotary phone.  As such, it isn't something that people will be glad to see and it won't stir up past emotions.  For "retro" products to make a come-back, I think it necessary that they were first popular and that many people were sad to see them go. 

 Seeing this rotory watch just didn't provoke any repressed memories like the reappearance of Beeman's, Black Jack, or Clove gum did.

May 19, 2007
by Steve Levenstein
Steve Levenstein's picture

Ahh, Beeman's gum... it and

Ahh, Beeman's gum... it and Thrills only cost a nickel when the other brands cost a dime - a critical factor to those of a certain age at a certain time. What i really miss are Clove Lifesavers, in their clove-brown wrapper... ahh, youth...