It is with a heavy heart that we must bid adieu to the Sony Walkman. Thanks for the memories, old friend! I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling a little sad saying goodbye. I can remember back to elementary school and buying my very first Walkman. We certainly had some good times spent together with my New Kids on the Block, Madonna, and Poison cassette tapes. One thing is certain though: it’s a different era.
For those of you out of the loop, Sony has announced it has stopped the Japanese production and sales of its Walkman portable cassette player. More than 30 years have passed since the first Walkman was produced, and Sony shipped its last batch this past April.
The first generation Walkman was released in July of 1979 in Japan. It later became a huge success, however only sold roughly 3,000 units in its very first month. Sony managed to sell some 200 million iterations of the cassette Walkman during the product’s 30-year career.
It’s ironic to think that the Walkman was my generation’s iPod. I’m sure the millennial generation never even owned a Walkman (I’m starting to feel old).
I never fully understood what it was like to watch a piece of music technology go extinct. But, like the vinyl-lovers of my parents’ generation, I now know what it’s like to have something that was the pinnacle of cool fall from grace.
In memory of our friend, which songs best capture your Walkman years?
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, I still have my old Walkman (as seen in the photo). I’m having a hard time parting with it.
RIP Sony Walkman