Trafalgar Talking Digital Watch
In the early 1980s novelty digital watches were all the rage and electronics had got smaller. In 1981 an English company called Trafalgar released this their model 1200 ‘Talking Watch’ which was able to tell you the time out loud when you pressed the black ‘speak’ button. It became Britain’s first speaking watch and narrowly missed out on being the world’s first speaking watch having been pipped at the post by Palerma.
There were clearly two versions released- a simpler version (the 1200) and a better version like this one (the 1200a) which had added feature sliders under the display. Looking at it now this watch screams early 1980s design to you with its big boxy black casing, but for any child of the era the speaker holes on the front would give a great similarity to that of a Microphone.
This example is offered boxed and in good overall condition. It appears fully working (I have just had new batteries put in), speaks out the time in a Stephen Hawkins accent, and comes together with its paper guarantee that shows it was originally purchased in August 1981. As you’d expect for a used watch the front face does have some wear and light scratches and two of the tiny backplate screws are missing from the back where someone has clearly opened it up and forgotten to replace them. Otherwise its a good genuine example of an unusual watch. It runs off a staggering 4 watch batteries (hence the thickness) of which I presume 3 must power the speech synthesizer.