Walkman PNG Transparent Images

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Submitted by on Aug 19, 2021

Sony’s Walkman (stylized as WALKMAN) is a brand of portable media players. The first Walkman, launched in 1979, was a portable cassette player that allowed individuals to listen to their favorite music while on the go. Because of its popularity, “walkman” has become an unofficial name for any maker or brand of personal stereo. Sony has produced about 200 million cassette-based Walkmans by the time manufacture ceased in 2010.

The Walkman brand was expanded to include the majority of Sony’s portable music and media devices. Portable DAT players, MiniDisc players/recorders, CD players (initially Discman, later renamed CD Walkman), radio receivers, Sony’s range of digital audio and media players, mobile phones, and more have all been given the Walkman moniker. Only digital audio and media devices are presently being manufactured as of 2020.

A modified Sony Pressman, a compact cassette recorder meant for journalists and launched in 1977, created the first Walkman prototype.


On July 1, 1979, the metal-cased blue-and-silver Walkman TPS-L2, the world’s first low-cost personal stereo, went on sale in Japan for roughly 33,000 yen (approximately $150.00). Sony estimated that it would sell around 5,000 devices per month, but in the first two months, it sold more than 30,000.

Because overseas sales firms objected to the wasei-eigo name, the Walkman was marketed under various names, including Soundabout in the United States, Freestyle in Australia and Sweden, and Stowaway in the United Kingdom. In the early 1980s, Walkman became famous worldwide, and Sony used the brand. In June 1980, the TPS-L2 was released in the United States.

The Walkman range saw significant growth throughout the 1980s. The WM-2, Sony’s second Walkman model, was introduced in 1981 and was much smaller than the TPS-L2 due to the “inverse” installation of the power-operated magnetic head and soft-touch controls. In 1982, the first model with a Dolby noise-reduction technology was released. In 1983, the WM-20, the first ultra-compact “cassette-size” Walkman with a telescoping casing, was released. This made carrying a Walkman in a purse or pocket simpler. In 1984, the first model with autoreverse was launched.

The WM-101 model was the first in its class to have a “gum stick” rechargeable battery in October 1985. Sony introduced the first model with remote control and one with a solar battery in 1986. (WM-F107).

Sony had a 50 percent market share in the United States and a 46 percent market share in Japan within a decade of its introduction.

In 1989, two limited edition 10th anniversary versions (WM-701S/T) were launched in Japan, both constructed of brass and plated in sterling silver. Only a few hundred of each were made. On July 1, 1994, a 15th anniversary model with vertical loading was released, as was a 20th anniversary model with a prestige model on July 1, 1999.

Over 100 million Walkmans had been sold globally by 1989, ten years after the first model was released. By 1995, 150 million units had been produced. Sony sold 186 million tape Walkmans by 1999, 20 years after the first model was released.

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