VHS v. Betamax

Via Mental Floss, I ran across this YouTube about the Betamax/VHS battle:

It’s pretty interesting on a couple of levels. First, the story serves as a good reminder that having the better technology (or service, for that matter) is no guarantee that you will succeed. In most cases, “good enough” is, well… good enough.

Second, it is interesting to me because VCRs were really the first piece of home/consumer technology that I was aware of as such. Being a child of the 1970s, I grew up with stuff only being available for watching when it aired on TV. With movies, you either saw it in the theater, or hoped that some chopped down version would eventually show up on the the ABC Friday Night Movie at some point.

Now, not only could you record stuff off TV, you could watch movies! Whenever you wanted to! You could go to the video store and rent any movie you wanted. To 12-year-old me, it was incredible.

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