I think all foreigners have been surprised at least once Japanese toilet system in Japan. And most Japanese may wish Japanese toilet were in overseas when they travel. What is special about the toilet in Japan? That is bidet which is toilet system with washing feature. Then, how has been the bidet system developed and what is special about bidet?
First, it actually was invented by an American company, “American Bidet” for medical purposes. Then, Japanese TOTO was first took over the patent by America and started to import and sell them in 1967. However, it was not adopted because of difficulty to maintain its temperature and direction of water. After spending lots of time developing the system, TOTO finally spread “Washlet” to Japanese houses in 1980. While “Washiki” (Japanese style) toilet is gradually disappearing, “washlet” instantly has became popular to foreigners as well as Japanese.
Second, the special features that TOTO developed are not only bidet system. One is the system which the toilet lid automatically opens as soon as you go into the toilet. Second is the many buttons like seat heating, nozzle position control and water pressure adjustment, so you can adjust many systems as you want. After learning them, I see TOTO’s effort for people’s satisfaction.
I wonder why it is not be positively imported to overseas. I think one of the reasons is because the quality of water. I really want to encourage people to once experience it and they will be attracted by it. I think this feature is the represent of Japanese particular cultures, such as cleanly people, enable to use pure water and the nationality which Japanese can easily talk about “toilet” in public.
This is a video which American couple enjoy Japanese toilet first time(from 6:40～), it’s very funny so check this out!