Sharp Corporation (シャープ株式会社, Shāpu Kabushiki-gaisha?) (TYO: 6753, Osaka Sec. Ex.: 6753, Nagoya Stk. Ex.: 6753, Fukuoka Stk. Ex.: 6753, Sapporo Sec. Ex.: 6753, LuxSE: SRP) is a Japanese multinational corporation that designs and manufactures electronic products. Headquartered in Abeno-ku, Osaka, Japan, Sharp employs more than 54,144 people worldwide as of October 31, 2009. The company was founded in September 1912. It takes its name from one of its founder's first inventions, the Ever-Sharp mechanical pencil, which was invented by Tokuji Hayakawa (早川 徳次) in 1915. Since then it has developed into one of the leading electronics companies in the world. As a semiconductor maker, Sharp is among the Worldwide Top 20 Semiconductor Sales Leaders and among the Top 100 R&D Spenders in a list published by IEEE Spectrum magazine. It gained public awareness in the United Kingdom when it sponsored Manchester United F.C. from 1982 to 2000, which was a period of great success for the club.
Sharp is known for the following contributions to computing:
- In 1968, Sharp engineer Tadashi Sasaki conceived the concept of a single-chip microprocessor. He discussed his idea with Busicom and Intel, leading to the development of the first microprocessor, the Intel 4004, released in 1971.
- In 1970, they worked with Nintendo to produce solar-powered light guns, the first commercially available light guns for home use.
- In 1978, they released the Sharp MZ, one of the first personal computers to play video games.
- In 1982, they released the Sharp X1, the successor to the Sharp MZ computer.
- In 1987, they released their next computer, the Sharp X68000, the most powerful home gaming system of its time. It served as the basis for Capcom's CPS-1 arcade system, and remained the most powerful home gaming system up until the release of the Neo Geo console in 1990.
Home computers Edit
- MZ-80K / MZ-80C
- MZ-80A / MZ-1200
- MZ-800 / MZ-1500
- MZ-5600 / MZ-6500
- HB-8000 HotBit - MSX 1 computer