Morita was born in Nagoya, Japan, in 1921 the son of sake brewers. In 1946, he helped start Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo KK (the Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation) with Ibuka. They had $375 and space in an abandoned department store, shelled by bombs in the war. The company quickly built Japan's first tape recorder, but it was big and bulky -- not a product destined to propel the company into the limelight. Then, in the 1950s, Ibuka and Morita got a license from Bell Labs to build transistors.
The Japanese were still hard hit by the war, and couldn't really afford expensive electronics, so Ibuka set his sights on the American market with a brand new idea -- a small, transistorized radio that could fit in your pocket. As it was, a US company built such a radio first, but more as a gimmick than an actual product. When Sony, as Morita's company was soon renamed, came out with their radio, it quickly took over the market
While the Regency sold out everywhere, it did...