The Last Remaining Manufacturers The Last Remaining Manufacturers The Last Remaining Manufacturers
As technology wanes, business based on it will decline until you’re left with only a handful of companies. Then there’s usually a period of stable equilibrium where those few companies survive on the long tail of demand for a while. In some cases, often related to nostalgic media, technologies previously left for dead can see a resurgence: Kodak recently tripled its film production operations, and the vinyl industry is unable to build factories fast enough to meet demand. I’m curious if we will also see a resurgence for the physical media that followed vinyl, like cassettes and CDs.


Related: The Last Remaining Floppy Disk Maker,

There's a saying about how old industries never die, there just becomes less of them. As a technology peaks and gets replaced with something wholly different, I expect we will see more stories like this.

But at the same time, there is another troubling trend of "abandonware", where companies will pull support for their software or hardware and turn those things into expensive paperweights. If the products have large enough communities, "maintainers" might emerge with home brewed solutions. But repairability, proprietary standards, and sometimes legal threats remain challenges for those communities, especially if dealing with corporations too true to the brutal logic of commercialization.