16 September 2021
Sir Clive Sinclair, the inventor and entrepreneur who was instrumental in bringing home computers to the masses, has died at the age of 81.
His daughter, Belinda, said he died at home in London on Thursday morning after a long illness. Sinclair was best known for popularising the home computer, bringing it to British high-street stores at relatively affordable prices.
For a certain generation of gamer, the computer of choice was the ZX Spectrum.
Sinclair became a household name as his products flew off the shelves and he was awarded a knighthood in 1983. But he would also become synonymous with one of his less successful inventions – the Sinclair C5 – a battery-powered electric trike that was launched in January 1985 with Sinclair predicting sales of 100,000 in the first year.
But it flopped, and Sinclair Vehicles found itself in receivership by October of the same year. Reviews expressed concerns about the safety of driving a vehicle below the sightline of other motorists, as well as exposure to the elements.
The following year, Sinclair sold his computer business to Amstrad.
He is survived by Belinda, his sons Crispin and Bartholomew, aged 55 and 52 respectively, five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.