End of an era; Japan stops making VCRs
TOKYO -- The ship has sailed on the VHS tape as Japan's Funai Electric has announced it will end production of home videocassette recorders in July.
Funai, the last remaining VCR manufacture in the country, made the decision due to smaller demand and limited parts availability for the analogue device. Panasonic and other once-leading brands had already withdrawn from the VCR market.
Since it began making VCRs in 1983, Funai has manufactured the product in China for sale in North America and other parts of the world, mainly under the Sanyo brand, now a unit of Panasonic.
It used to sell as many as 15 million units annually. But the number shrank to 750,000 last year as magnetic recording has been replaced with optical media, for DVDs and Blu-ray discs.