Released by Yamaha in 1990, the QY10 was the first device offering the facilities of a music workstation in a portable package. In response to its design, the music technology press coined the term "walkstation", a portmanteau of the words "Walkman" and "workstation". The QY10 sold well, indicating that there was a market for these devices, so Yamaha followed it up in 1992 with the more powerful QY20 and QY22. Subsequently, both Yamaha (most Yamaha QY sequencers) and Roland (the Roland PMA-5) have produced walkstations, although neither officially use the term for their products.
In 1992, Novation took advantage of the QY10's success by releasing a companion keyboard, the Novation MM10. The top of the keyboard has a slot which securely accommodates a QY10, and short cables connect the two units together. With two octaves of full size velocity-sensitive keys, the MM10 overcomes a significant limitation of the QY10: its lack of a proper keyboard. Combined, they constitute a complete, if basic, music workstation.
During the 1990s, electronic musical equipment became more dependent on large and sophisticated graphical displays. However, the QY10's display is a small LCD panel which accommodates only 16 characters of text. This made it feasible for the Kentucky LCD Interface Project to modify the QY10 with a speech interface as an assistive technology for the blind.
The QY10 was discontinued in the mid-1990s.