Friday, 26 October 2012

MUSIC MACHINES - THE DECLINE OF THE MINIDISC

In the summer of 2011, Sony announced its plans to scrap making its MiniDisc Walkmans, due to a decrease in demand. They have now completely stopped production of the device.

When first released, the MiniDisc Walkman was one of the smallest personal music devices available. The MiniDisc was first introduced in 1992, more than a decade after the first cassette Walkman became available.
The Sony MiniDisc walkman was smaller than a CD
It was designed to be more compact than portable CD players. Like cassettes, owners were able to record their own music onto a MiniDisc, but at a much higher quality. The format faced stiff competition from 1995 onwards, when the CD-R became available to the mass market.

The emergence of the MP3 player in 1998 caused the MiniDisc to rapidly decline in popularity. On July 7 2011, Sony announced that it would stop shipping the MiniDisc Walkman, effectively killing the format.

The fact that this once iconic music player has been shelved is a sign of the times. Everything is becoming touchscreen; music players are becoming increasingly more compact. You don’t need to store your music on disks anymore; thousands of songs can be stored far more easily online. When the MiniDisc arrived it was the market leader. It was only a few short years before it was discontinued. Which leaves us wondering; what will replace the iPod?

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