Japan is known for its technology and innovation. So here’s a list of Japanese electronics companies that you can trust to buy your favorite electronics gadgets!
The Japanese have been known to produce some of the best electronics in the world. Japan is home to the biggest names in the world of electronics. Japanese electronic companies have given the world some of the biggest innovations.
Some of these contributions are pioneering the transistor radio and the Walkman by Sony, the first mass produced laptops by Toshiba, the VHS recorder by JVC, and solar cells and LCD screens by Sharp.
Some of the major Japanese electronics companies are Akai,Canon, Casio, Citizen, Fujifilm, Fujitsu, Hitachi, JVCKenwood, Konica Minolta, Kyocera, Mitsubishi, Nikon, Nintendo, Olympus, Panasonic, Pioneer, Ricoh, Seiko Group, Sharp, Sony, TDK,Toshiba, and Yamaha
Decline of Japanese electronics companies
A third of Japan’s economic output is accounted for by consumer electronics. The 21st century brought with it financial struggles that resulted in market shares being lost to South Korean and Taiwanese companies. Following this, the economic crisis of 2008 hit Japanese electronic companies like Sony, Hitachi, Panasonic,Fujitsu, Sharp, NEC, and Toshiba. They all reported losses that added up to $17 billion.
Many experts have concluded that this decline is due to the factors including high costs, value of the Japanese currency (yen), and too many companies producing the same products that resulted in a decline in economies of scale and pricing power. Another factor that has played a big role in this is the lack of adaptation of Japanese electronic companies to the Digital Revolution and the shift from hardware to software product development.
Although Japanese electronic companies still hold a large international market share, they don’t have the same reputation that they once did. As of now, Japanese electronic companies are competing with companies from South Korea, China, Taiwan, and America for the top spot in the international electronics consumer market.
List of Japanese Electronics Companies
Founders: Masaru Ibuka, Akio Morita
Sony is a Japanese multinational multi industry company that has its headquarters in Minato, Tokyo. It was formerly known as Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo, Ltd. The company built Japan’s first tape recorder called the Type G.
It is believed that Sony’s TR-63 radio “cracked open the US market and launched the new industry of consumer microelectronics”. SOny Corporation of America was founded in 1960 and it played a huge role in improving the “made in Japan” perspectives that America had.
Sony has been known for creating their own in house standards for recording and storage technologies. WHile the company is most commonly associated with video game consoles under the name PlayStation, it is also the owner of the largest music entertainment business in the world alongside gaming and television entertainment.
Some of the popular electronics by Sony are:
- Digital cameras
- Home Theatre
Founder: Goro Yoshida, Saburo Uchida, Takeo Maeda
Canon is a Japanese multinational corporation with its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. It specializes in industrial, optical and imaging products, such as cameras, scanners, printers, and semiconductor manufacturing equipment.
If you have ever looked into buying a camera, you would have definitely come across the Canon name. It has become one of the most popular and trusted brands when it comes to cameras.
Some of the popular electronics by Canon are:
- Copiers and printers
- DSLR cameras
- Brod]adcasting equipment
- Professional displays
- Digital cameras
Founder: Namihei Odaira
Hitachi Ltd. is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation with its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. Hitachi’s first product was Japan’s first 4-kilowatt induction motor that was produced to be used in copper mining.
Hitachi has carved a niche for itself in the world of electronics and provides and manufactures a number of services and products. It also has subsidiaries which include Hitachi Vantara, Hitachi Metals, Hitachi Rail, and Hitachi Astemo.
Some popular products and services that are provided by Hitachi are:
- Automotive systems- drive control, car information systems, electric powertrain systems
- Construction machinery- hydraulic excavators, forestry equipment, mechanical and hydraulic cranes, wheel loaders
- Defense systems- military vehicles, crisis management, satellite image processing systems
- Digital media and consumer products- air conditioning equipment, optical disc drives, white goods (refrigerators, washing machines, etc)
- Electronic systems and equipment- particle therapy equipment, cell culture equipment
- Information and telecommunication systems- ATMs, servers, outserving services, software
- Power systems- power grids, nuclear and hydrogen power generation systems
- Social infrastructure and industrial systems- elevators, escalators, railways vehicles and systems
Founder: Kōnosuke Matsushita
Panasonic Corporation is a major Japanese multinational electronics company with its headquarters in Osaka, Japan. It was started in 1918 as a lightbulb socket manufacturer and was formerly known as Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd. By the late 220th century, it became the world’s largest maker of consumer electronics.
Panasonic is a popular sponsor for many sports persons and clubs. In football, Panasonic sponsors Marco Reus, a player for Bundesliga club Borussia Dortmund and Germany. It also owns Panasonic Wild Knights (a rugby club base) and Gamba Osaka (a club from the J. League). Panasonic is the official partner and sponsor of AFC Champions League and Major League Soccer.
Some popular products manufactured by Panasonic are:
- Home Cinema Systems
- Washing machines
- Hair dryers
Chairman: Makoto Kimura
Nikon Corporation is a Japanese multinational corporation with its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. It specializes in optics and imaging products.
Nikon was established in 1917 when three leading optical manufacturers came together to form a fully integrated optical company.
Some of Nikon’s popular products are:
- Camera lens
- Ophthalmic lenses
- Measurement instruments
- Rifle scopes
Founder: Fusajiro Yamauchi
Nintendo is a Japanese multinational consumer electronics company that is based in Kyoto, Japan. It dates back to 1889 when it used to produce hanafuda or Japanese playing cards and was known as Nintendo Karuta.
Over the years, Ninetendo evolved to become the world’s largest video game company by revenue. In 1977, Nintendo’s first video game console , the Colour TV- Game. With the release of Donkey Kong in 1981 and the Nintendo Entertainment System and Super Mario Bros. in 1985, Nintendo gained international recognition.
Nintendo has many subsidiaries in Japan and across the world. It has also partnered up with companies like The Pokemon Company and HAL Laboratory.
Nintendo has used a red wordmark against a white background logo since the 1960s. This logio has undergone many variations and a white variant on a red background has been in use since 2015.
Some of the popular consoles by Nintendo are:
- Nintendo 64
- Super Nintendo Entertainment System
- Nintendo Switch
- Nintendo 3DS
- Game Boy Advance
- Nintendo Wii
- Game Boy/ Game Boy Color
- Nintendo DS
Founder: Tadao Kashio, Toshio Kashio
Casio Computer Co. Ltd. is a Japanese multinational electronics manufacturing corporation with its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. It was founded in 1946 and is known for its watches, calculators, mobile phones, electronic musical instruments, and digital cameras.
In 1957, Casio gave the world its first electric compact calculator. Casio has become a household name over the years because of its affordability and availability.
Some of the popular products by Casio are:
- Scientific calculators
- Basic calculators
- Wrist watches
- Musical keyboards
- Digital cameras
- Pocket viewer
- Game consoles
- Data and video projector
- Mobile phones
- Cash registers
Chairman: Masami Yamamoto
Fujitsu Limited is a Japanese multinational information and communications technology equipment and services company. It was established in 1935 after it broke away from Fuji Electric Company and has its headquarters in Tokyo.
Fujitsu has been named as one of the world’s most admired companies and a Global 500 company. It has various operations including Fujitsu Laboratories, Fujitsu Electronics Europe GmbH, Fujitsu Consulting, Fujitsu General, PFU Limited, Fujitsu Glovia, Inc, and Fujitsu Client Computing Limited.
Some popular products manufactured by Fujitsu are:
- Mobile phones
- Software (Interstage, Systemwalker)
- Services (Consulting, customer support, education services)
Founder: Daicel Corporation
Fujifilm Holdings Corporation, or simply Fuji, is a Japanese multinational conglomerate with its headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. It is known for manufacturing optics, office and medical electronics, biotechnology, and chemicals.
Over the years the Fujifilm instant camera has gained popularity, especially among youngsters. They are available across the world and is affordable.
Some popular products by Fujifilm are:
- Fujifilm photographic films
- Motion picture film stock
- Fuji Neopan Professional balck and white negative film
- Cameras and lens
- Photographic paper
- Flash memory
- Inkjet printer paper
List of Japanese Electronic Companies: FAQs
Are Japanese electronics good?
Yes, Japanese electronics are some of the best available products in the market. Japanese electronic brands have a good global reputation and is constantly innovating with new technologies.
What electronics should I buy in Japan?
Some of the best electronics to buy in Japan are: Cameras, Video Cameras, Computer, Rice Cookers, Electronic toilet seats, Apple Products, Headphones, Bluetooth/Wireless speakers
Is it cheaper to buy electronics in Japan?
Depending on exchange rates, some electronics may be cheaper to buy in Japan. The Japanese tax exemption on certain products for foreign visitors may also save you some money.
Hiya! I’m the main author of Japan Truly. I love everything Japan and love testing out Japanese products, be it skincare and makeup or gadgets! You’ll find reviews of some of the best selling Japanese products (tried and tested) right here!