I got the T81A for the 1296MHz band to play around with and have a cheap way to add and extra band for VHF contests. There are some weak points to the human to machine interface, the hot button comes to mind. But my guess is that it did not sell very well and at any rate most Japanese compnaies turn over their HT products pretty quick.
BTW there is a yahoo interest group for the IC-T81A the URL is http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ict81a
it is a great place to ask questions and get information about this radio