The Inventor Of The Music Cassette Is Dead

Numerous pioneers in the music industry have radically changed the way we listen to music. The last great invention was the MP3 digital format. When the researchers at the German Fraunhofer Institute presented their innovation to the public, they had no idea what it would trigger. The inventions of the Dutchman Lou Ottens triggered similarly enormous upheavals. He is considered the creator of the music cassette and was also significantly involved in developing the CD. He has now died at the age of 94.

The Inventor Of The Music Cassette Is Dead
The Inventor Of The Music Cassette Is Dead

Music According To Your Wishes

With the invention of the music cassette, everything suddenly changed. When this hit the market in the 1960s, people were suddenly able to compose music according to their own needs. The mixed tapes were born. Since its inception, the industry has sold an unimaginable 100 billion cartridges. That already shows the importance of this innovation. Lou Ottens was head of product development at Philips in the 1960s.

Handy And Light

He and his team invented the music cassette. That was first presented in 1963 at an electronics fair in Berlin and immediately developed into a best seller. Ottens invention was nothing more than his answer to the tape. At the time, he found these too cumbersome and cumbersome. The cassette, on the other hand, could be put in your pocket and easily transported. That also applied to the matching playback device, the cassette recorder.

Sales Are Picking Up Again

Although people have long since forgotten the medium today, it is now experiencing a revival. Some artists publish their works again on cassette and thus support the sales. Sales made a comeback in 2020. Sales rose by more than 100 per cent in the UK alone. The cassette is also benefiting from the trend that fans want to own music again physically. Sales exceeded the 100,000 unit limit. It is noticeable that new acts dominate the charts. That is in complete contrast to the sales charts for records, where the classics often dominate.

But that was not the end of the inventor’s career, on the contrary. Ottens was part of the Philips development team that presented the compact disc. When the time came in 1982, the engineer publicly stated that the cassette recorder is superfluous. The innovator retired just four years later. He only experienced the triumphant advance of the CD from afar. The small pieces of silver replaced the records and once again broadcast the success of the music cassettes.

So far, the industry sold more than 200 billion pieces worldwide. But now, the time for this invention has also run out. The sales figures are falling rapidly; streaming has long since replaced the CD as the most important medium. Lou Ottens regretted only one development in his life. He once said in an interview that he would have liked to invent the Walkman. That was a Sony invention and also a game-changer.

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