A microcontroller is a small computer on a single integrated circuit. In modern terminology, it is less sophisticated than, a system on a chip. A microcontroller contains one or more CPUs along with memory and programmable input/output peripherals. Program memory in the form of ferroelectric RAM, NOR flash or OTP ROM is often included on chip, as well as a small amount of RAM. Microcontrollers are designed for embedded applications, in contrast to the microprocessors used in personal computers or other general purpose applications consisting of various discrete chips. Microcontrollers are used in automatically controlled products and devices, such as automobile engine control systems, implantable medical devices, remote controls, office machines, power tools and other embedded systems. By reducing the size and cost compared to a design that uses a separate microprocessor and input/output devices, microcontrollers make it economical to digitally control more devices and processes. Mixed signal microcontrollers are common, integrating analog components needed to control non-digital electronic systems.
In the context of the internet of things, microcontrollers are an economical and popular means of data collection and actuating the physical world as edge devices. Some microcontrollers may use four-bit words and operate at frequencies as low as 4 kHz, for low power consumption, they have the ability to retain functionality while waiting for an event such as a button press or other interrupt. Other microcontrollers may serve performance-critical roles, where they may need to act more like a digital signal processor, with higher clock speeds and power consumption; the first microprocessor is claimed to be the 4-bit Intel 4004 released in 1972. It was followed by the 4-bit 4040, the 8-bit Intel 8008, the 8-bit Intel 8080. All of these processors required several external chips to implement a working system, including memory and peripheral interface chips; as a result, the total system cost was several hundred dollars, making it impossible to economically computerize small appliances. MOS Technology introduced sub-$100 microprocessors, the 6501 and 6502, with the chief aim of addressing this economic obstacle, but these microprocessors still required external support and peripheral chips which kept the total system cost in the $100s of dollars.
One book credits TI engineers Gary Boone and Michael Cochran with the successful creation of the first microcontroller in 1971. The result of their work was the TMS 1000, which became commercially available in 1974, it combined read-only memory, read/write memory and clock on one chip and was targeted at embedded systems. In response to the existence of the single-chip TMS 1000, Intel developed a computer system on a chip optimized for control applications, the Intel 8048, with commercial parts first shipping in 1977, it combined ROM with on the same chip with a microprocessor. Among numerous applications, this chip would find its way into over one billion PC keyboards. At that time Intel's President, Luke J. Valenter, stated that the microcontroller was one of the most successful products in the company's history, he expanded the microcontroller division's budget by over 25%. Most microcontrollers at this time had concurrent variants. One had EPROM program memory, with a transparent quartz window in the lid of the package to allow it to be erased by exposure to ultraviolet light.
These erasable chips were used for prototyping. The other variant was either a mask programmed ROM or a PROM variant, only programmable once. For the latter, sometimes the designation OTP was used, standing for "one-time programmable". In an OTP microcontroller, the PROM was of identical type as the EPROM, but the chip package had no quartz window; because the erasable versions required ceramic packages with quartz windows, they were more expensive than the OTP versions, which could be made in lower-cost opaque plastic packages. For the erasable variants, quartz was required, instead of less expensive glass, for its transparency to ultraviolet light—to which glass is opaque—but the main cost differentiator was the ceramic package itself. In 1993, the introduction of EEPROM memory allowed microcontrollers to be electrically erased without an expensive package as required for EPROM, allowing both rapid prototyping, in-system programming; the same year, Atmel introduced the first microcontroller using Flash memory, a special type of EEPROM.
Other companies followed suit, with both memory types. Nowadays microcontrollers are cheap and available for hobbyists, with large online communities around certain processors. On 21 June the "world's smallest computer" was announced by the University of Michigan; the device is a "0.04mm3 16nW wireless and batteryless sensor system with integrated Cortex-M0+ processor and optical communication for cellular temperature measurement." It "measures just 0.3 mm to a side—dwarfed by a grain of rice. In addition to the RAM and photovoltaics, the new computing de
International Business Machines Corporation is an American multinational information technology company headquartered in Armonk, New York, with operations in over 170 countries. The company began in 1911, founded in Endicott, New York, as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company and was renamed "International Business Machines" in 1924. IBM produces and sells computer hardware and software, provides hosting and consulting services in areas ranging from mainframe computers to nanotechnology. IBM is a major research organization, holding the record for most U. S. patents generated by a business for 26 consecutive years. Inventions by IBM include the automated teller machine, the floppy disk, the hard disk drive, the magnetic stripe card, the relational database, the SQL programming language, the UPC barcode, dynamic random-access memory; the IBM mainframe, exemplified by the System/360, was the dominant computing platform during the 1960s and 1970s. IBM has continually shifted business operations by focusing on higher-value, more profitable markets.
This includes spinning off printer manufacturer Lexmark in 1991 and the sale of personal computer and x86-based server businesses to Lenovo, acquiring companies such as PwC Consulting, SPSS, The Weather Company, Red Hat. In 2014, IBM announced that it would go "fabless", continuing to design semiconductors, but offloading manufacturing to GlobalFoundries. Nicknamed Big Blue, IBM is one of 30 companies included in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and one of the world's largest employers, with over 380,000 employees, known as "IBMers". At least 70% of IBMers are based outside the United States, the country with the largest number of IBMers is India. IBM employees have been awarded five Nobel Prizes, six Turing Awards, ten National Medals of Technology and five National Medals of Science. In the 1880s, technologies emerged that would form the core of International Business Machines. Julius E. Pitrap patented the computing scale in 1885. On June 16, 1911, their four companies were amalgamated in New York State by Charles Ranlett Flint forming a fifth company, the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company based in Endicott, New York.
The five companies had offices and plants in Endicott and Binghamton, New York. C.. They manufactured machinery for sale and lease, ranging from commercial scales and industrial time recorders and cheese slicers, to tabulators and punched cards. Thomas J. Watson, Sr. fired from the National Cash Register Company by John Henry Patterson, called on Flint and, in 1914, was offered a position at CTR. Watson joined CTR as General Manager 11 months was made President when court cases relating to his time at NCR were resolved. Having learned Patterson's pioneering business practices, Watson proceeded to put the stamp of NCR onto CTR's companies, he implemented sales conventions, "generous sales incentives, a focus on customer service, an insistence on well-groomed, dark-suited salesmen and had an evangelical fervor for instilling company pride and loyalty in every worker". His favorite slogan, "THINK", became a mantra for each company's employees. During Watson's first four years, revenues reached $9 million and the company's operations expanded to Europe, South America and Australia.
Watson never liked the clumsy hyphenated name "Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company" and on February 14, 1924 chose to replace it with the more expansive title "International Business Machines". By 1933 most of the subsidiaries had been merged into one company, IBM. In 1937, IBM's tabulating equipment enabled organizations to process unprecedented amounts of data, its clients including the U. S. Government, during its first effort to maintain the employment records for 26 million people pursuant to the Social Security Act, the tracking of persecuted groups by Hitler's Third Reich through the German subsidiary Dehomag. In 1949, Thomas Watson, Sr. created IBM World Trade Corporation, a subsidiary of IBM focused on foreign operations. In 1952, he stepped down after 40 years at the company helm, his son Thomas Watson, Jr. was named president. In 1956, the company demonstrated the first practical example of artificial intelligence when Arthur L. Samuel of IBM's Poughkeepsie, New York, laboratory programmed an IBM 704 not to play checkers but "learn" from its own experience.
In 1957, the FORTRAN scientific programming language was developed. In 1961, IBM developed the SABRE reservation system for American Airlines and introduced the successful Selectric typewriter. In 1963, IBM employees and computers helped. A year it moved its corporate headquarters from New York City to Armonk, New York; the latter half of the 1960s saw IBM continue its support of space exploration, participating in the 1965 Gemini flights, 1966 Saturn flights and 1969 lunar mission. On April 7, 1964, IBM announced the first computer system family, the IBM System/360, it spanned the complete range of commercial and scientific applications from large to small, allowing companies for the first time to upgrade to models with greater computing capability without having to rewrite their applications. It was followed by the IBM System/370 in 1970. Together the
Lenovo Group Ltd. or Lenovo PC International shortened to Lenovo, is a Chinese multinational technology company with headquarters in Beijing and Morrisville, North Carolina, United States. It designs, develops and sells personal computers, tablet computers, workstations, electronic storage devices, IT management software, smart televisions. Lenovo is the world's largest personal computer vendor by unit sales, as of March 2019, it markets the ThinkPad line of notebook computers, IdeaPad and Legion lines of notebook laptops, the IdeaCentre and ThinkCentre lines of desktops. Lenovo sells its products in around 160 countries. Lenovo's principal facilities are in Beijing and Morrisville, with research centers in Beijing, Shenzhen, Chengdu and Wuhan in China, Yamato in Kanagawa Prefecture and Morrisville in the U. S, it has a joint venture with NEC, Lenovo NEC Holdings, which produces personal computers for the Japanese market. Lenovo was founded in Beijing in November 1984 as Legend and was incorporated in Hong Kong in 1988.
Lenovo acquired IBM's personal computer business in 2005 and agreed to acquire its Intel-based server business in 2014. Lenovo entered the smartphone market in 2012 and as of 2014 was the largest vendor of smartphones in Mainland China. In 2014, Lenovo acquired the mobile phone handset maker Motorola Mobility from Google. Lenovo is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the Hang Seng China-Affiliated Corporations Index referred to as "Red Chips". Liu Chuanzhi founded Lenovo on 1 November 1984 with a group of ten engineers in Beijing with 200,000 yuan; the Chinese government approved Lenovo's incorporation on the same day. Jiǎ Xùfú, one of the founders of Lenovo, indicates the first meeting in preparation for starting the company was held on 17 October of the same year. Eleven people, the entirety of the initial staff, attended; each of the founders was a middle-aged member of the Institute of Computing Technology attached to the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The 200,000 yuan used.
The name for the company agreed upon at this meeting was the Chinese Academy of Sciences Computer Technology Research Institute New Technology Development Company. Their first significant effort, an attempt to import televisions, failed; the group rebuilt itself within a year by conducting quality checks on computers for new buyers. Lenovo soon started developing a circuit board that would allow IBM-compatible personal computers to process Chinese characters; this product was Lenovo's first major success. Lenovo tried and failed to market a digital watch. Liu said, "Our management team differed on which commercial road to travel; this led to big discussions between the engineering chief and myself. He felt that if the quality of the product was good it would sell itself, but I knew this was not true, that marketing and other factors were part of the eventual success of a product." The fact that its staff had little business experience compounded Lenovo's early difficulties. "We were scientists and didn't understand the market", Liu said.
"We just learned by trial-and-error, interesting—but very dangerous", said Liu. In 1990, Lenovo started to market computers using its own brand name. In May 1988, Lenovo placed its first recruitment advertisement; the ad was placed on the front page of the China Youth News. Such ads were quite rare in China then. Out of the 500 respondents, 280 were selected to take a written employment exam. 120 of these candidates were interviewed in person. Although interviewers only had authority to hire 16 people, 58 were given offers; the new staff included 18 people with graduate degrees, 37 with undergraduate degrees, three students with no university-level education. Their average age was 26. Yang Yuanqing, the current CEO of Lenovo, was among that group. Liu Chuanzhi received government permission to form a subsidiary in Hong Kong and to move there along with five other employees. Liu's father in Hong Kong, furthered his son's ambitions through mentoring and facilitating loans. Liu moved to Hong Kong in 1988.
To save money during this period and his co-workers walked instead of taking public transportation. To keep up appearances, they rented hotel rooms for meetings. Lenovo became publicly traded after a 1994 Hong Kong listing. Prior to its IPO, many analysts were optimistic about Lenovo; the company was praised for its good management, strong brand recognition, growth potential. Analysts worried about Lenovo's profitability. Lenovo's IPO was massively over-subscribed. On its first day of trading, the company's stock price hit a high of HK$2.07 and closed at HK$2.00. Proceeds from the offering were used to finance sales offices in Europe, North America and Australia, to expand and improve production and research and development, to increase working capital; when Lenovo was first listed, its managers thought the only purpose of going public was to raise capital. They had little understanding of the rules and responsibilities that went along with running a public company. Before Lenovo conducted its first secondary offering in 1997, Liu proudly announced the company's intent to mainland newspapers only to have its stock halted for two days by regulators to punish his statement.
This occurred several times until Liu learned that he had to choose his words in public. The first time Liu traveled to Europe on a "roadshow" to discuss his company's stock, he was shocked by the skeptical questions he was subjected to and felt offended. Liu came to understand that he wa
Acer Inc. is a Taiwanese multinational hardware and electronics corporation, specializing in advanced electronics technology, headquartered in Xizhi, New Taipei City, Taiwan. Acer's products include desktop PCs, laptop PCs, servers, storage devices, virtual reality devices, displays and peripherals. Acer sells gaming PCs and accessories under its Predator brand. In the early 2000s, Acer implemented a new business model, shifting from a manufacturer to a designer and distributor of products, while performing production processes via contract manufacturers. In 2015, Acer was the sixth-largest personal computer vendor in the world. In addition to its core IT products business, Acer has a new business entity that focuses on the integration of cloud services and platforms, the development of smartphones and wearable devices with value-added IoT applications. Acer was founded by Stan Shih, his wife Carolyn Yeh, a group of five others as Multitech in 1976, headquartered in Hsinchu City, Taiwan; the company began with US$25,000 in capital.
It was a distributor of electronic parts and a consultant in the use of microprocessor technologies. It produced the Micro-Professor MPF-I training kit two Apple II clones; the company was renamed Acer in 1987. In 1998, Acer reorganized into five groups: Acer International Service Group, Acer Sertek Service Group, Acer Semiconductor Group, Acer Information Products Group, Acer Peripherals Group. To dispel complaints from clients that Acer competed with its own products and to alleviate the competitive nature of the branded sales vs. contract manufacturing businesses, in 2000 the company spun off the contract business, renaming it Wistron Corporation. The restructuring resulted in two primary units: brand name sales and contract manufacturing. In 2001 the company got rid of its manufacturing units, BenQ and Wistron to focus resources on design and sales. Acer increased worldwide sales while reducing its labor force by identifying and using marketing strategies that best utilized their existing distribution channels.
By 2005, Acer employed a scant 7,800 people worldwide. Revenues rose from US$4.9 billion in 2003 to US$11.31 billion in 2006. Acer's North American market share has slipped over the past few years, while in contrast, the company's European market share has risen. In the mid-2000s years, consumer notebooks have been the sole growth drivers for the PC industry, Acer's exceptionally low overheads and dedication to the channel had made it one of the main beneficiaries of this trend. Acer grew in Europe in part by embracing the use of more traditional distribution channels targeting retail consumers when some rivals were pursuing online sales and business customers. In 2007 Acer bought Gateway in the USA and Packard Bell in Europe and became the Number 3 world provider of computers and number 2 for notebooks, achieved significant improvement in profitability. Acer has been striving to become the world's largest PC vendor, in the belief that the goal can help it achieve economy of scale and garner higher margin.
But such a reliance on the high-volume, low-value PC market made Acer exposed when buying habits changed. In November 2013 Chairman and CEO J. T. Wang, President Jim Wong, both resigned due to the company's poor financial performance. Wang had been due to leave Acer at year end, was supposed to have been succeeded by Wong. Acer co-founder Stan Shih took over as board chairman and interim president after the departure of Wang and Wong and began to search for new candidates to assume the roles of CEO and president. On 23 December, Acer named Jason Chen, vice president of worldwide sales and marketing at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing, as its new president and CEO, effective 1 January. In 1988, Acer acquired Counterpoint Computers. In 1990, Acer acquired Altos Computer Corporation. In 1993, Acer acquired the PC division of Commodore International. In 1997, Acer acquired Texas Instruments notebook computer business. On 27 August 2007, Acer announced plans to acquire its US-based rival Gateway, Inc. for US$710 million.
Acer's former chairman, J. T. Wang, stated that the acquisition "completes Acer's global footprint, by strengthening our United States presence". Included in this acquisition was the eMachines brand. In January 2008, Acer announced. In March 2008, Acer acquired: E-TEN. In 2009, Acer acquired 29.9% of Olidata. In August 2010, Acer and Founder Technology signed a memorandum of mutual understanding to strengthen their long term PC business cooperation. In July 2011, Acer Inc. bought iGware Inc. for $320 million to try to enter the lucrative cloud market. IGware creates cloud infrastructure tools for devices. In September 2015, Acer acquired GPS cycling computer brand Xplova. In September 2015, Acer invested in robotics start-up company Jibo. In March 2016, Acer made an equity investment in grandPad, a provider of technology solutions designed for senior citizens. In June 2016, Acer's Board of Directors approved the establishment of a joint venture with Starbreeze AB to design, promote and sell StarVR Virtual Reality Head-Mounted Displays.
In 2016, Acer acquired wireless pet camera maker Pawbo. In 2017, Acer became largest corporate shareholder of AOPEN Inc. Acer has 7,000+ employees worldwide, operates in 70 countries, has a
USB flash drive
A USB flash drive known as a thumb drive, pen drive, gig stick, flash stick, jump drive, disk key, disk on key, flash-drive, memory stick, USB key, USB stick or USB memory, is a data storage device that includes flash memory with an integrated USB interface. It is removable and much smaller than an optical disc. Most weigh less than 1 oz. Since first appearing on the market in late 2000, as with all other computer memory devices, storage capacities have risen while prices have dropped; as of March 2016, flash drives with anywhere from 8 to 256 GB were sold, while 512 GB and 1 TB units were less frequent. As of 2018, 2TB flash drives were the largest available in terms of storage capacity; some allow up to 100,000 write/erase cycles, depending on the exact type of memory chip used, are thought to last between 10 and 100 years under normal circumstances. USB flash drives are used for storage, data back-up and transfer of computer files. Compared with floppy disks or CDs, they are smaller, have more capacity, are more durable due to a lack of moving parts.
Additionally, they are immune to electromagnetic interference, are unharmed by surface scratches. Until about 2005, most desktop and laptop computers were supplied with floppy disk drives in addition to USB ports, but floppy disk drives became obsolete after widespread adoption of USB ports and the larger USB drive capacity compared to the 1.44 MB 3.5-inch floppy disk. USB flash drives use the USB mass storage device class standard, supported natively by modern operating systems such as Windows, macOS and other Unix-like systems, as well as many BIOS boot ROMs. USB drives with USB 2.0 support can store more data and transfer faster than much larger optical disc drives like CD-RW or DVD-RW drives and can be read by many other systems such as the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, DVD players, automobile entertainment systems, in a number of handheld devices such as smartphones and tablet computers, though the electronically similar SD card is better suited for those devices. A flash drive consists of a small printed circuit board carrying the circuit elements and a USB connector, insulated electrically and protected inside a plastic, metal, or rubberized case, which can be carried in a pocket or on a key chain, for example.
The USB connector may be protected by a removable cap or by retracting into the body of the drive, although it is not to be damaged if unprotected. Most flash drives use a standard type-A USB connection allowing connection with a port on a personal computer, but drives for other interfaces exist. USB flash drives draw power from the computer via the USB connection; some devices combine the functionality of a portable media player with USB flash storage. M-Systems, an Israeli company, were granted a US patent on November 14, 2000, titled "Architecture for a -based Flash Disk", crediting the invention to Amir Ban, Dov Moran and Oron Ogdan, all M-Systems employees at the time; the patent application was filed by M-Systems in April 1999. In 1999, IBM filed an invention disclosure by one of its employees. Flash drives were sold by Trek 2000 International, a company in Singapore, which began selling in early 2000. IBM became the first to sell USB flash drives in the United States in 2000; the initial storage capacity of a flash drive was 8 MB.
Another version of the flash drive, described as a pen drive, was developed. Pua Khein-Seng from Malaysia has been credited with this invention. Patent disputes have arisen over the years, with competing companies including Singaporean company Trek Technology and Chinese company Netac Technology, attempting to enforce their patents. Trek has lost battles in other countries. Netac Technology has brought lawsuits against PNY Technologies, aigo and Taiwan's Acer and Tai Guen Enterprise Co. Flash drives are measured by the rate at which they transfer data. Transfer rates may be given in megabytes per second, megabits per second, or in optical drive multipliers such as "180X". File transfer rates vary among devices. Second generation flash drives have claimed to read at up to 30 MB/s and write at about half that rate, about 20 times faster than the theoretical transfer rate achievable by the previous model, USB 1.1, limited to 12 Mbit/s with accounted overhead. The effective transfer rate of a device is affected by the data access pattern.
By 2002, USB flash drives had USB 2.0 connectivity, which has 480 Mbit/s as the transfer rate upper bound. That same year, Intel sparked widespread use of second generation USB by including them within its laptops. Third generation USB flash drives were announced in late 2008 and became available in 2010. Like USB 2.0 before it, USB 3.0 improved data transfer rates compared to its predecessor. The USB 3.0 interface specified transfer rates up compared to USB 2.0's 480 Mbit/s. By 2010 the maximum available storage capacity for the devices had reached upwards of 128GB. USB 3.0 was slow to appear in laptops. As of 2010, the majority of laptop models still contained the 2.0. In January 2013, tech company Kingston, released a flash drive with 1TB of storage; the first USB 3.1 type-C flash drives, with read/write speeds of around 530 MB/s, were announced in March 2015. As of July 2016, flash drives within the 8 to 256 GB
Aigo is the trade name of Chinese consumer electronics company Beijing Huaqi Information Digital Technology Co Ltd. aigo should not be capitalized, much like "iPod". Its head office is in the Ideal Plaza in Beijing. Beijing Huaqi Information Digital Technology Co Ltd is a consumer electronics manufacturer headquartered in Beijing, it was founded by Féng Jūn, its current president, in 1993 and produced keyboards. Aigo may be participating in a trend that sees Chinese nationals preferring to purchase locally produced durable goods, which have increased in quality as of late. Aigo's products include MIDs, digital media players, computer cases, digital cameras, computer peripherals. Aigo has several R&D facilities. An incomplete list of aigo's subsidiaries can be found here. Established in 1993 and located in Beijing, aigo Music operates a digital music service much like iTunes; the first of its kind in China, it is, as of 2009, the biggest portal for legal downloading of music in the country. Strategic partnerships with Warner Music, EMI and Sony allow a wide range of music to be offered at 0.99 yuan per song.
Aigo set up this English as a second language brand with help from Crazy English founder Li Yang. An aigo subsidiary that specializes in 3D animated films. Set up in October 2003, it operates two official aigo outlet stores in Singapore. Established in 2006, this Shenzhen-based research and development facility focuses on the development of mobile multimedia software. Aigo is a sponsor of a number of the majority involving automobile racing. Aigo was an official partner of the Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes Formula One team; as of 2008, aigo sponsors Chinese driver "Frankie" Cheng Congfu, in A1GP racing.aigo was an official partner of the 2007 race of champions, a racing competition that uses a variety of different vehicles. Aigo was one of the sponsors of Dan Wheldon's 2011 Indianapolis 500 victory. Aigo, as of 2009, has a global strategic cooperation effort with Manchester United. Aigo Aigo aigo tagged posts @ gizmodo.com aigo tagged posts @ engadget.com
Sony Corporation is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Kōnan, Tokyo. Its diversified business includes consumer and professional electronics, gaming and financial services; the company owns the largest music entertainment business in the world, the largest video game console business and one of the largest video game publishing businesses, is one of the leading manufacturers of electronic products for the consumer and professional markets, a leading player in the film and television entertainment industry. Sony was ranked 97th on the 2018 Fortune Global 500 list. Sony Corporation is the electronics business unit and the parent company of the Sony Group, engaged in business through its four operating components: electronics, motion pictures and financial services; these make Sony one of the most comprehensive entertainment companies in the world. The group consists of Sony Corporation, Sony Pictures, Sony Mobile, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Sony Music, Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Sony Financial Holdings, others.
Sony is among the semiconductor sales leaders and since 2015, the fifth-largest television manufacturer in the world after Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics, TCL and Hisense. The company's current slogan is Be Moved, their former slogans were The One and Only, It's like.no.other and make.believe. Sony has a weak tie to the Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group corporate group, the successor to the Mitsui group. Sony began in the wake of World War II. In 1946, Masaru Ibuka started an electronics shop in a department store building in Tokyo; the company started with a total of eight employees. In May 1946, Ibuka was joined by Akio Morita to establish a company called Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo; the company built Japan's first tape recorder, called the Type-G. In 1958, the company changed its name to "Sony"; when Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo was looking for a romanized name to use to market themselves, they considered using their initials, TTK. The primary reason they did not is that the railway company Tokyo Kyuko was known as TTK.
The company used the acronym "Totsuko" in Japan, but during his visit to the United States, Morita discovered that Americans had trouble pronouncing that name. Another early name, tried out for a while was "Tokyo Teletech" until Akio Morita discovered that there was an American company using Teletech as a brand name; the name "Sony" was chosen for the brand as a mix of two words: one was the Latin word "sonus", the root of sonic and sound, the other was "sonny", a common slang term used in 1950s America to call a young boy. In 1950s Japan, "sonny boys" was a loan word in Japanese, which connoted smart and presentable young men, which Sony founders Akio Morita and Masaru Ibuka considered themselves to be; the first Sony-branded product, the TR-55 transistor radio, appeared in 1955 but the company name did not change to Sony until January 1958. At the time of the change, it was unusual for a Japanese company to use Roman letters to spell its name instead of writing it in kanji; the move was not without opposition: TTK's principal bank at the time, had strong feelings about the name.
They pushed for a name such as Sony Teletech. Akio Morita was firm, however. Both Ibuka and Mitsui Bank's chairman gave their approval. According to Schiffer, Sony's TR-63 radio "cracked open the U. S. market and launched the new industry of consumer microelectronics." By the mid-1950s, American teens had begun buying portable transistor radios in huge numbers, helping to propel the fledgling industry from an estimated 100,000 units in 1955 to 5 million units by the end of 1968. Sony co-founder Akio Morita founded Sony Corporation of America in 1960. In the process, he was struck by the mobility of employees between American companies, unheard of in Japan at that time; when he returned to Japan, he encouraged experienced, middle-aged employees of other companies to reevaluate their careers and consider joining Sony. The company filled many positions in this manner, inspired other Japanese companies to do the same. Moreover, Sony played a major role in the development of Japan as a powerful exporter during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.
It helped to improve American perceptions of "made in Japan" products. Known for its production quality, Sony was able to charge above-market prices for its consumer electronics and resisted lowering prices. In 1971, Masaru Ibuka handed the position of president over to his co-founder Akio Morita. Sony began a life insurance company in one of its many peripheral businesses. Amid a global recession in the early 1980s, electronics sales dropped and the company was forced to cut prices. Sony's profits fell sharply. "It's over for Sony," one analyst concluded. "The company's best days are behind it." Around that time, Norio Ohga took up the role of president. He encouraged the development of the Compact Disc in the 1970s and 1980s, of the PlayStation in the early 1990s. Ohga went on to purchase CBS Records in 1988 and Columbia Pictures in 1989 expanding Sony's media presence. Ohga would succeed Morita as chief executive officer in 1989. Under the vision of co-founder Akio Morita and his successors, the company had aggressively expanded in