Farewell forever floppy disk

By Motoko Kakubayashi 27/04/2010 4


Last week, electronics giant SONY officially announced they would put an end to manufacturing the floppy disk.

The SONY 3.5 inch floppy disk made its debut in 1981 and was widely used by anyone who had a computer as a way to store documents.  But the company said the much-loved floppy had been losing out to USB memory sticks and CDs during the past few years.

Other major companies such as Maxwell and Mitsubishi had already ended floppy disk productions in early 2009.

Nonetheless, the floppy disk leaves an impressive track record.  At its peak 47 million floppy disks were sold worldwide in 2000, and even in 2009, 8 million floppies were sold in Japan alone.

Creative use of floppy disks


4 Responses to “Farewell forever floppy disk”

  • Adios, floppy 🙂

    I suppose it’s a milestone of sorts, but it doesn’t make me feel the same way as hearing that Kodachrome was being stopped being made.

    I can remember when Apple decided to produce a computer range without a floppy disk drive (quite a long time ago). It caused quite a lot of fuss at the time.

    I suppose this means the end of Linux floppy boot disks, though! (It’s been/was a practice amongst (some) Linux sysadmins to make up a emergency boot floppy disk to reboot Linux machines into a simple single-user state to explore the problem if the hard drive packs up, etc.)

  • I can’t say that I’m going to miss the things.

    Like Grant mentioned above, I get a bit more affected by the loss of ‘classic films’ as manufacturer’s retrench. But flash and optical drives do things so much better than floppies, there time had really come. At least some of the classic films had a look and feel that was enduring and appealing despite technological advances.

    Parenthetically, my first digital camera was a Sony mavica that used 3.5″ floppies as storage. Floppies would now only store a fraction of one digital photo (raw files on my a700 are 18mb).