History of CASIO's Electronic Calculator Business

History of CASIO's Electronic Calculator Business

Casio Sells One Billionth Electronic Calculator

Long History of Contribution to the Development of the Electronics Industry and Mathematics Education

The Road to One Billion Calculators

From the relay calculator to the electronic calculator


Launched in 1957, Casio's 14-A calculator was a revolutionary new device using 342 electric relays that solved addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division problems up to 14 digits. In September 1965, Casio released the 001, the world's first electronic calculator with a memory function. The following year, Casio commenced exports to the United States and Europe, taking its first step as a manufacturer for the global market. Casio calculators were well received around the world, and total production reached the 100,000 mark by 1969.

Casio Mini creates demand among individual users

Casio Mini
Casio Mini

In the latter half of the 1960s, there was a surge in the number of new manufacturers entering the calculator market. At its peak there were more than 50 manufacturers competing with each other, and the phrase "calculator wars" was coined. The competition, however, was confined to the limited market for calculators used in the office. In August 1972, Casio released the Casio Mini, which was sold for the then-revolutionary price of only 12,800 yen, in order to be affordable to the general public. The Casio Mini was a huge hit selling 1 million units in ten months.

Card-sized calculator ends competition for smaller and thinner products


With the huge popularity of the Casio Mini, Casio's cumulative sales of calculators reached the one million-unit mark in 1972, and skyrocketed to two million that very same year. Casio's worldwide calculator sales reached 10 million in 1974. This was the turning point - from here on price competition among calculator makers reached a climax, with one company after another withdrawing from the market. Next, the market saw fierce competition to develop smaller and thinner products. In 1983, Casio developed the SL-800, which at 0.8mm was as thin as a credit card. This put an end to the "smaller and thinner" race. The total number of all calculators sold by Casio reached 100 million units in 1980.

Casio calculators continue to improve


After Casio achieved the ultimate in thinness with the SL-800, changes in product trends led to a focus on functionality. In 1985, Casio developed the fx-7000G, the first scientific calculator to incorporate a graphing function. In 2004, the company developed a scientific calculator capable of displaying fractions, square roots, and other symbols as they are shown in textbooks. Casio continues to produce innovative products to this day and as of December 31, 2006, Casio had sold one billion calculators.

Launch of the 14-A, the world's first fully electric compact relay calculator
On display at the National Science Museum in Japan
Began sales of electronic calculators
Launch of the 001, the world's first electronic calculator with memory function
Casio's total global calculator sales reach 100,000
Casio Mini, the world's first personal calculator, is launched
Casio's total global sales of calculators pass the 1 million and then 2 million marks
Casio's total global calculator sales reach 10 million
Launch of the Denkuro, combination calculator with clock function
Casio's total global calculator sales reach 100 million
Launch of the SL-800, a 0.8-mm thin credit card size calculator
Archived at the Museum of Modern Art, New York *
Launch of the fx-7000G, the world's first graphing scientific calculator
Archived at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History, Washington, D.C. *
Launch of the fx-82ES, the first scientific calculator with natural mathematic display
Launch of the fx-9860G scientific calculator featuring graphing and natural mathematical display
Casio's total global sales reach 1 billion calculators

* Registered as important historical materials in Japanese industrial technology by the National Science Museum in Japan (archived at Casio Computer Co., Ltd.)