80’s Gadgets

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We live in a world where technology is important to us and we are constantly looking for new gadgets to make our lives easier. Today we take a trip down to memory lane and talk about what the 80’s had to offer in terms of gadgets.

1980 Sony Walkman (Source: lauramartinexploreproccess.files.wordpress.com)

1980 Sony Walkman (Source: lauramartinexploreproccess.files.wordpress.com)

We start with the year 1980 when Sony introduced the legendary Walkman which gave birth to an entirely new era of music portability, allowing people to play their favorite music just about anywhere. Soon after its launch, it became the hottest product for roller-skaters, runners and teenagers from all over the world. People started to make their own mix-tapes at home and listen to Duran Duran, Madonna, Pet Shop Boys and the rest of the bands while on the go.

Two years later, in 1982, the Commodore 64 was unveiled and it initially was commercialized with 64 kB of memory with graphics and sound performance that was far superior in comparison to the IBM-compatible computers of those days. When it came out, it had a retail price tag of $595 which made it considerably more affordable than personal computers. One reason for being a hit was due to the fact that it was sold in retail stores, rather than electronic stores. Another reason was that the Commodore 64 could be directly plugged in a TV without having to make any modifications.

1983 marked the introduction of the microwave oven which although it was invented much earlier, only with the beginning of this year started to be cheaply and widely available for households to buy one. Back in 1983 these products were considered as being a luxury item, while now more than 90% of households own one.

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One year later the compact disc player became available and it radically changed the music industry. After five years on the market, CDs started outselling records. The compact disc became smaller and more affordable so an increasingly number of consumers started buying them.

1985 VHS (Source: veryangrytoad.com)

1985 VHS (Source: veryangrytoad.com)

In 1985 we got the Video Home System (VHS) which gave us the possibility to watch our favorite movies of the decade from the comfort of our homes. Thanks to the open standard of the format, lots of companies had the chance to make tapes without licensing costs or restrictions. In today’s standards, the VHS quality is approximately equivalent to the 330 x 480-pixel resolution.

The 80s saw the introduction of the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) which brought to kids excellent games starring Mario and Zelda. It was an 8-bit system that upon launch cost $250 and had 18 available games. During its lifespan, Nintendo managed to sell more than 60 million units.

Last but not least, in 1989 we got the desktop fax machine.