Glamour shots of this concept cell-phone wristwatch have been bouncing between design blogs, and Samsung announced recently that it would release a real-life analog in Europe by the fourth quarter of this year. But the wrist-mounted communications device has real roots–and I’m not talking about Dick Tracy.
In 1990, Motorola presented the world with this: the pager-watch, which it said would be the “personal communications tool for the 21st century.” Developed in conjunction with Timex, the pager watch took “a long time” to develop, according to this AP newspaper article from 1989. It carried a “three-digit price tag.”
Of course, it was doomed for replacement by the mobile phone, which was already in a useful (if clunky) incipience by 1990-1991.