A country of strong traditions: in the capital of Japan, document flow continues on 3.5-inch floppy disks

Among the bureaucracy of local authorities in the capital of Japan excitement – banks began to introduce significant monthly fees for maintaining data on floppy disks and other physical media. The exorbitant costs of the service are forcing them to ditch floppy disks in favor of online service. Officials are accustomed to the reliability of 3.5-inch floppy disks and are anxiously awaiting changes, although they will be stretched out in time for a full five years, until 2026.

Image source: Reuters

Image source: Reuters

Since the 70s of the last century, Japan has been presented as a country with advanced technologies. For a while it was, but at the turn of the 2000s, it began to yield first to South Korea, and then to China. Digital transformation has affected Japan and in many ways it has come out ahead. For example, Sony became the mainstay for the production of e-books on E Ink screens, the substrates for which were also made by the Japanese company Toppan Printing. But at some stage, the Japanese economy collapsed, and there was no time for innovations. In any case, in the field of public sector transformation.

The introduction of a monthly payment in the region of $ 500 (for example, the services of one of the banks) forces the capital’s officials to abandon floppy disks. The bank said that keeping disk drives and other means of reading data from physical media, which have long been out of production, is associated with increased costs. The budget never has extra money, no matter what country it is, and the metropolitan officials in Tokyo are forced to change the work of the document circulation system.

“Disks almost never broke or lost data, Said one of the officials in charge of managing public funds in Meguro County. “The area has long kept information about employee benefits on 3.5-inch floppy disks that are physically delivered to the bank for processing.” In addition, the supply of floppy disks in institutions was so abundant that they could be used for years, although the same Sony stopped producing floppy disks about ten years ago.

However, in a number of Tokyo districts, officials will continue to use floppy disks until 2026, when the capital’s workflow modernization program is completed.

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Dylan Harris

Dylan Harris is fascinated by tests and reviews of computer hardware.

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