Betamax versus VHS – Format Wars in Home Video

One of the most studied format wars in the history of business occurred during the 1980s between Betamax and VHS.  Although Beta was introduced to the market first and offered superior picture quality, it quickly was displaced by VHS.  Beta’s 100% market share in 1975 was reduced to less than 25% by 1981.  There are entire books and hundreds of Internet pages devoted to why VHS was more successful than Beta, which make for a fascinating read.  I will only offer a summary here. 

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