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The end of the reel for cassette tapes

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Retired Tech

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Currys, the biggest electronics retailer in Britain, will today announce that it is to stop selling cassette tapes.

Currys is the last High Street chain to bow out of the market. Woolworths has thrown in the towel and HMV stopped stocking the products 18 months ago.

Currys still sells a handful of hi-fi systems that include tape players, but will phase them out during the year.

In 1989, 83 million music cassettes were sold in the UK, last year only about 100,000 of the items were sold.

However, this figure excludes audio books and blank tapes, which still attract a small, loyal fan base, with four million blank tapes sold last year and 1.5 million audio books.

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Hi Keith

"That's progress" as they say, and as demand dwindles it becomes less profitable for shops to stock them. Same will happen with their video equivalent, the VHS cassette (and the decks which play them). Both based on magnetic tape which stretches, wears out and snaps (and as for VHS tape, compared to DVD-Video the picture quality is very poor even on 'virgin' tape, however remarkable the technology may have seemed 20 years ago.

Just as well for the tape-manufacturing companies that they all embraced the new technologies which have replaced tape. Otherwise many of them would have been stuck with warehouses full of obsolete tape-cassettes and nothing to make a profit from.

Strange to think future generations will see old electronic gadgets in museums of the future, and no doubt remark on how strange and primitive they look. those same gadgets that you and I (or our parents) spent a small fortune on to have "the very latest in state-of-the-art entertainment" !

Edited by pip22, 15 May 2007 - 01:41 PM.

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