The first "Walkman" stereo cassette player, which revolutionized the way we listen to music. The Walkman became a huge hit, contrary to internal and external concerns that it would not sell well without the recording function, and created a new lifestyle.
Sony co-founder Masaru Ibuka wanted to "listen to music in stereo on an airplane while traveling abroad," so he had a monaural tape recorder converted into a stereo version. Akio Morita, another founder of Sony, who had tried out the modified machine, said, "This is interesting! It would satisfy the wishes of young people who want to enjoy music all day long." His business instincts dictated that the Walkman should be commercialized as soon as possible, and he decided to go with just the playback function. At the same time, ultra-lightweight headphones were being developed, and the combination of these headphones and the Walkman was completed in 1979 as a palm-sized stereo player with headphones. An ingenious advertising campaign was launched to promote the new lifestyle of enjoying stereo sound anytime, anywhere. This new way of enjoying music quickly captured the hearts of young people, and the Walkman created a new market for the headphone stereos.