The Pac-Man Telephone


In the era when shoulder pads were bold, boomboxes blared, and neon reigned supreme, one piece of technology stood out as a symbol of playful innovation—the 1982 One-Piece Pac-Man Telephone. Released by ATC (American Telecommunication Company) This remarkable device not only connected people in an analog world but also bridged the gap between pop culture and communication technology with its ingenious design and captivating functionality.

Travel back to the early 1980s, a time when arcades were bustling and the Pac-Man phenomenon had taken the world by storm. The Pac-Man Telephone was born. It was more than just a communication device; it was a homage to a cultural phenomenon that had captured the hearts of gamers and enthusiasts worldwide.

A Design Ahead of Its Time:

The Pac-Man Telephone’s exterior was a testament to creativity and attention to detail. Encased in a bright yellow shell, it featured Pac-Man’s iconic face—the big round eyes, the trademark grin, and that ever-familiar wedge-shaped “mouth.” However, the magic didn’t stop there. With a playful twist, the “mouth” could be flipped open to reveal a functional dial pad. This brilliant design merged the world of gaming with the practicality of telecommunications, turning every conversation into a playful journey down memory lane.

Opening the Pac-Man Telephone’s “mouth” to reveal the dial pad was like unlocking a treasure chest of memories. The distinct click of the flip mechanism took you back to the era when every arcade visit was a thrilling adventure. The dial pad itself featured the numbers in classic arcade-style fonts, serving as a charming nod to the game’s origin. Dialing a number was akin to entering a secret code in an arcade game—a delightful fusion of real-world communication and nostalgic escapism.

A Timeless Relic:

As technology has marched forward, the Pac-Man Telephone has retained its status as an enduring icon of the ’80s. It’s more than just a communication device; it’s a time capsule that encapsulates the essence of an era when imagination knew no bounds. Each time it rings, it’s as if the ghosts of arcade halls past come to life, filling the room with a sense of wonder and joy.

In a world where sleek smartphones dominate, the Pac-Man Telephone serves as a poignant reminder of a simpler time when technology was tactile and conversations were cherished. Owning this piece of history is like having a portal to the past on your desk—a tangible link to a time when Pac-Man ruled the gaming world and conversations were adorned with the chomping sounds of arcade nostalgia.


The 1982 One-Piece Pac-Man Telephone is more than just a communication device; it’s a time machine that transports us back to an era of innocence and unbridled joy. With its iconic design, flip-open functionality, and undeniable charm, it’s a testament to the marriage of pop culture and technology.

Whether you’re a gaming enthusiast, a nostalgia aficionado, or simply someone who appreciates the magic of the ’80s, this treasure from the past is bound to put a smile on your face with every flip and ring.

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Pac-Man Telephone | Smithsonian Institution (