Atari Home Pong

Predecessor: -
Successor: Atari 2600
Release Date: 31/12/1975
Discontinued Date: -
Additional Sizes: -
Display Palette: -
Supported Game Media:

Home Pong is a home console version of the legendary pong arcade released by Atari in 1976. The Pong game can be played single player or with two players using the two knobs on the console as controllers. Playing Pong alone is a great opportunity to confirm which one is your dominant hand!

Atari Pong History

As early as 1974, Atari began designing a domestic version of the Atari PONG, originally proposed by Harold Lee in 1973. The system was designed by three engineers: Harold Lee, Alan Alcorn and Bob Brown.

Because Magnavox Odyssey was already declining in sales (mainly due to a lack of satisfaction and a bad reputation that it could only work with a Magnavox TV receiver), the sellers were not attracted to Atari's PONG game until Sears sell the system with the Tele-Games label for Christmas in 1975. After this huge success, Atari released its own version of PONG in 1976.

The system had one important feature that most others did not have in 1975: the use of a single chip that provided games with screen resolution and attractive sound. In fact, other systems still used analog or digital circuits using separate components. Scoring on the screen would require more components in the circuits, resulting in an increase in retail price. But since Atari designed a special PONG chip, the system could sell at normal prices with advanced features.

In 1975, Atari was rejected by toy and electronics manufacturers, as most other PONG systems did not sell well. One of Atari's executives decided to contact Tom Quinn, who worked at Sears/Roebuck. After several meetings with Bushnell, Sears ordered 150,000 PONG systems for Christmas. Assembled by Atari, the system sold under the Sears Tele-Games label (model Pong 25796). Some people in America still remember Christmas 1975 when they went to the shops early in the morning and waited several hours to sign a list that allowed them to get a PONG system.

Pong have been a huge success and were the cause of multiple imitations and several lawsuits. However, its popularity didn't reduced until more advanced systems were released on the market.