Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Golden Memories

Sunday while glancing through a newspaper, I came across an advertisement issued by a leading retail store in Ahmedabad offering Philips “Walkman” free on purchase of Laptops… Yeah you heard it right it was indeed WALKMAN.

Walkman in the era of iPods it was a bit surprising.

Thirty years ago, the device was revolutionary changed the way people listened to music. It created the portable media player market. Three decades on, however, Sony is struggling against rivals such as Apple, which has enjoyed immense success with its iPod music player. While people celebrate Walkman’s 30th birthday, I wonder what makes iPod a dominant player instead of the original Sony Walkman?

The reasons could be many including simple interface, large capacity, visually attractive etc etc. Similarly how many products can we recollect that has faded in to oblivion or which has succumb to advancement of Technology.

Mobiles over Pagers,
Telephone over the Telegraph,
CD Roms over Floppy disk,
DVD over Video Home System (VHS),
CD’s over Cassette Players,
LCD over Flat TV over ordinary Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) Television,
Digital Watches over Manual,
Motorcycles over Scooters (Market Leader closing down the production of Scooters),
Multiplex over single screen theatres,
Computers over Electronic Typewriter over Manual Typewriter,
The Central Processing Units (CPU), The Operating System (OS) gets replaced every moment. Broadband over dial-up,
needless to mention email replacing writing handwritten letters.

During the 80’s when the concept of VCR found its way in our country we used to rent it along with VHS Cassettes for the entire 24 hours and used to watch movies at a stretch as the vendors were always in demand and even an hour delay was huge loss to them. The best thing was that it was not only our family but also the neighbours and well-wishers who used to pour even at odd hours to have a glimpse of the movie. For the entire 24 hours no body slept; the only agenda was to view all the four / five movies prior to handing it back to the vendor. Food was also consumed at the same place. People were vying for laying hands on the prized VCR system for a mere 24 hours. We had to book at least a week to ten days in advance and at times the wait list was endless. Today we have approximately five movies in one DVD but hardly time to watch.

Same applies to landline connection and LPG Cylinders too, as possession of these two utility items was an achievement in itself. We used to wait for years to get the allotment; if any family were allotted either of the two connections the whole colony used to celebrate it like a big festival. Upon allotment the initial few days the phone was rarely off hook as we used to inform the allotment (like the arrival of a new baby) to the entire world.

Pagers another prized possession - the entry of Pagers opened flood gates to mobile revolution, people possessing it behaved like they have found the golden nectar. With the arrival of Mobiles phones the neo-rich started flaunting it and their were eager on lookers who used to stare them as if they were from an alien planet, Alas with the advent of Mobiles, Pagers being a one way communication was phased out.

VHS - The earlier VHS were bulky and there were storage issues too; however CD’s / VCD’s & DVD’s have conveniently replaced them. Latest Technology that is being talked about is Blu Ray.

LCD’s have addressed a big issue like huge TV Stand and storage space, now it conveniently sits on our walls and has become a part of fashion accessory. Sleek Laptops are launched by Zero figure bollywood actresses.

Earlier post-offices were the only place where people used to swarm to make trunk calls, book their calls in advance and had to wait in queue for their call to get through. With the advent of STD Booths a few of the call traffic from post-offices were diverted, people used to throng the STD booths after ten in the night as the call charges were one fourth but the network was always busy because of heavy traffic. With the arrival of Mobile phones slowly and steadily the peak and non-peak time merged and the call traffic was distributed evenly. Cut to the current scenario the existing network operators have brought the world at one place by a press of button.

Will there be takers for the free Walkman?