Betamax wasn't so much a bad product as a lesson in marketing gone awry. The also-ran to VHS in the video-format wars, Betamax was pushed by Sony as a proprietary format in 1975 before it was completely ready, in a race to get manufacturers on board. But while Betamax could record up to an hour of video, VHS could record up to two hours. That slight advantage was enough for VHS to gain a foothold in the market, one it never relinquished. Betamax became a footnote.
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