You’re not wrong if you thought that cassette tapes are now irrelevant in the current digital age of Spotify and Apple Music. Even Sony’s pride and joy, the Walkman, evolved its playback format from cassettes, CDs, and to completely digital. We may not see a revival for the cassette format just yet, but perhaps the IT’S OK cassette player by NINM Lab might help to kickstart that. What’s with that name? I don’t know. What’s so special about it? I’m glad you asked.
The IT’S OK cassette player not only reintroduces the beauty of cassette playback, which may result in having you rummaging through old boxes or scouring vintage shops for tapes, it is also equipped with a modern quality-of-life twist: Bluetooth 5.0 support. A first of its kind, in fact. Now, before the older generation declare sacrilege on that added feature (shut up, I’m not that old), the IT’S OK cassette player does indeed come with a 3.5mm headphone jack. Unfortunately, it does lack AM/FM radio support though.
So why go through all the trouble in trying to make such an old playback format relevant? One thing for sure, it’s a great way to close the gap between generations. Parents could share their favourite music with their children using the cassettes they have kept in storage. We might even see a revival of mix tapes as well. Most importantly, it’s a great opportunity to teach the young ones the pain of rewinding a cassette tape with a pencil. Again, I’m not old.
NINM Lab’s IT’S OK cassette player will begin its crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter later today, and is expected to cost USD 63 (~MYR 260) with three colour choices: Sakura Pink, Cloud White, and Evening Blue. Do note that the device will be available on its own and does not come with any Bluetooth headphones. Be sure to give them your support if you want to see this retro futuresque device hitting shelves in the near future.
Amusingly, it’s a wonder why Sony wouldn’t have thought of such a thing for the Walkman’s 40th anniversary release. But you know what? IT’S OK.