Watch Guide / Seiko Timeline

Seiko Timeline

A Timeline of Seiko Watch Company 1881 to 2010

Although Seiko, founded in 1881, is a relative newcomer in the ancient world of watchmaking, it is perhaps the most important watchmaker of the 20th Century.  Its accomplishments are an enviable list of world firsts, and technological milestones.

1881 Kintaro Hattori opens watch and jewelry shop in Tokyo's Ginza District. The shop is called K. Hattori.
1892 K. Hattori begins producing clocks under the Seikosha name.
1917 K. Hattori renamed "K. Hattori & Co., Ltd".
1923 K. Hattori headquarters and factory along with much of Tokyo destroyed by the Great Kanto Earthquake. Although many customers' timepieces in for repair were lost, Seiko's reputation was greatly enhanced when it replaced all of them with new watches and clocks.
1924 The first watches are produced with the Seiko name. The name Seiko can be interpreted as "exquisite", "minute" or also as "success".
1953 Seiko airs first ever television commercial in Japan
1964 Seiko is the Official timer for the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.
1965 Seiko introduces Japan's first diving watch.
1968 Seiko mechanical timepieces win chronometer competitions in Neuchatel and Geneva, Switzerland.
1969 Changing horology forever, Seiko introduces "Astron", the world's first production quartz watch. Retail price was around $1250.00USD.
1973 Seiko introduces World's first LCD quartz watch with six digit display.
1975 Seiko introduces World's first multifunction digital watch.
1978 Seiko is the official timer for the World Cup of Football in Argentina.
1982 Seiko introduces World's first TV watch.
1982 Seiko is the official timer for the World Cup of Football in Spain.
1983 K. Hattori & Co., Ltd "renamed Hattori Seiko Co., Ltd"
1986 Seiko is the official timer for the World Cup of Football in Mexico.
1988 Seiko introduces the kinetic quartz watch which incorporated 50 patented technologies. The first kinetic timepiece used just 3% of the energy of Seiko's first quartz watch, the Astron.
1990 Hattori Seiko Co., Ltd renamed "Seiko Corporation".
1990 Seiko is the official timer for the World Cup of Football in Italy.
1990 Seiko introduces World's first computerized dive watch, the "Scubamaster".
1992 Seiko is the official timer for the Summer Olympic Games in Barcelona.
1994 Seiko is the official timer for the Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer.
1998 Seiko is the official timer for the Winter Olympic Games in Nagano.
2002 Seiko is the official timer for the Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City.
2005 After more than 600 prototypes and 28 years of development, Seiko introduces "Spring Drive".
2007 Seiko Corporation renamed "Seiko Holdings Corporation".
2008 Seiko builds the 8R caliber automatic chronograph with a "magic lever", column wheel and vertical clutch. A new three-pointed hammer was invented which ensures instant reset of the chronograph hands.
2010 Seiko introduces World's first EPD (electronic paper display) watch with E Ink technology.


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