First cell phone call kicks off an amazing journey (photos)

First cell phone call kicks off an amazing journey (photos)

Summary: When Marty Cooper called his rival 40-years ago, he knew he had something good, but no clue aout how good. Here's the good, the bad and the ugly models in cell phone history.

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TOPICS: Mobility
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  • Where would a top 10 of mobile classics be without an appearance from the BlackBerry, the device that launched a thousand thumb injuries? The first BlackBerry device was launched in 2000 under the snappy name of the RIM 957 Wireless Handheld. This device, the 7290, is the one credited with kick-starting the BlackBerry craze.

    Since then, the BlackBerry has spawned a thousand imitations from the likes of Nokia and Motorola, but the form factor has yet to be bested for mobile email addicts. Blackberry maker RIM is now working out how best to exploit the next wave of mobile data services, such as salesforce automation on the go - which would suggest there's more evolution to come from the scrollwheel-bearing device.

    Photo credit: RIM

  • Say 'mobile email' and in the UK most people will think of RIM. In the US, it's a different story thanks to the hiptop. The device, manufactured by Danger, debuted in 2002 under the Sidekick brand name and was aimed at a high-spending, high-fashion youth market who were keen on IM and email from their phones.

    The Sidekick, sold exclusively by T-Mobile in the UK and US, comes with a slideout screen revealing a full Qwerty keyboard. While the phone hasn't really taken off in the UK, it's a popular choice Stateside, where it's best known for being hacked and spilling Paris Hilton's socialite secrets.

    Photo credit: Danger

  • And then came the biggest of the bunch in 2007, the iPhone. Released on June 27, 2007, the original iPhone ran on iOS 1.0, came with 4 GB, or 8 GB storage and had a battery life of 8 hours talk time. It featured a mult-touch scree, WiFi and cellular Internet access and a 2 MP camera.

    Photo: Apple

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Topic: Mobility

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6 comments
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  • Wow, 2 pretty stunning omissions

    Palm and Pocket PC / Windows Mobile. These were what apple put into their Xerox machine (the one they stole from Parc) in order to create the iphone.

    Kudos to Palm and Microsoft.
    toddbottom3
  • How convenient to forget about Newton...

    the progenitor of both Palm and Windows mobile. Your hate know no bounds...oh...and you know nothing you grade-school drop out!
    The Danger is Microsoft
  • Blackberry 7290...

    I've used one with GoAmerica with a data-only service and I liked it a lot. I also liked Windows Mobile 5.0 back around 2005 and two years later after my contract is up my UT-StarCom PPC-6700's resistive touch screen broke down on me (no, the glass wasn't broken, but the resistive touch screen got mis-calibrated like 10 pixels down when I tap with a stylus and it can't be fixed). I am cheap and I needed a way to get in contact using e-mail, Internet relay service (711), and instant messenger and be able to surf the web.

    By 2009, I've once got Samsung Ace with Windows Mobile 6.1 Smartphone Edition as it has a keyboard and no touchscreen. I've had to establish my credit with Sprint and I've never miss a payment. These days, I've pretty much only cared for data as I don't see myself using 200+ minutes of voice per month -- much less 100 or 50 as I don't talk a lot in the phone due to not having something like "HD Voice." I'm hearing impaired. But now, I have T-Mobile with $30/month 100 voice minutes, unlimited texting, and 5GB of 4G data/unlimited 2G data. And with what I'm paying for, that is the perfect solution I need.
    Grayson Peddie
  • Trivia Question

    Why was it called a "shoe phone"?
    ldo17
    • Shoe Phone

      In the 1960's spy sitcom Get Smart, agent 86, Maxwell Smart, played by Don Adams, had a phone in one of his shoes (or maybe both? only one at a time ever rang), which rang with a standard landline bell sound when a call came in. To answer it, or make a call, he had to take his shoe off, slide the heel to one side to reveal a dial (yep, rotary dial), listen to the heel, and talk into the sole near the toe.

      As a father whose son was growing up in the 1980's, I was amused to note that Don Adams also did the voice for the kiddie police character Inspector Gadget, and basically, Gadget was the SAME CHARACTER as Maxwell Smart with a different job, and doing it the same humorously incompetent way. One thing that was creepier was that the animated character had telescoping metal prosthetic limbs, though. But Gadgets little niece Penny and her dog (both smarter than her uncle) had the first laptop with universally available wi-fi, usually using it to hack the bad guy's machines and save her uncle. So Adams was connected indirectly with two "tech predictions" on television.
      jallan32
  • Xelibri by Siemens (9 of 13 above)

    I never saw one of those in real life, but with the pink trim, it must have been marketed to young ladies. It even opens like a package of birth control pills with buttons where the pills would be (but the wrong spacing). That would have made it scary to PARENTS of American teenage girls, but since it was sold in Japan, that would not be a problem.
    jallan32