Iskra ETA 86


We’re sure you find our object of the month of May at least familiar. In the past, there was almost no family or office without such a phone. Here is why this phone, designed by Davorin Savnik, was so popular.

The ETA 80 phone was the first entirely electronic telephone model made in Slovenia, sold by the millions worldwide and thus paved the way of other worthy products to foreign markets. First models of ETA 80 still had a rotary dial, but this was soon replaced – as on our object of the month – with the widely known set of 12 keys. The telephone’s durability, affordability and distinctive tear-shape contributed to its success as well. Because of the simple flat shape it got the nicknames such as ‘Pancake’ and ‘Fitipaldi’ (called so for the famous automobile and Formula 1 racing driver Emerson Fittipaldi, who competed in the eighties). The phone acquired its cult status because it was available in more than one colour, which was considered a novel thing in the 1980’s Yugoslavia. ETA 80 was the most duplicated phone in the world. Many countries made their own version of ETA 80’s. The original idea was duplicated in 16 countries and 160 million copies were sold worldwide. In the USA for example, the price of for an ETA 80 copy was seven times higher than of the original.

ETA 80 model can be found on our permanent exhibition Slovenians in the XX. century – among the other famous products from the 60’s – 90’s.

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