Just a few years ago, cell phone makers seemed to be in an ever-escalating battle to make the smallest phone possible. It seemed as if any day, one would need a magnifying glass to find his phone when it started ringing.
Thinner, shorter, narrower–it was almost funny how many millimeters were shaved off each new iteration.
Then the BlackBerry came along. The idea of a larger phone was not so crazy, but that was really just for business people. They were the only ones who couldn’t ever be away from their email anyway.
Hipster-ish types who wouldn’t be caught dead with a BlackBerry did like their Palm Pilot PDAs and didn’t care they had to carry two devices.
Then the ultimate hipster company, Apple, came out with the iPhone. For months ahead of time, Apple fanboys and gadget collectors excitedly awaited the launch of the phone-PDA-mp3 player. When it came out, you had people showing off their iPhones where just a few months earlier, they’d been sporting one of those razor-thin, nearly invisible cell phones.
A funny thing has happened since. The phones are getting bigger. The iPhone got thicker. The Droid X2 is considerably larger than the iPhone, even. The brand-spanking-new Galaxy note even says in the text in this (sponsored) video, “Largest screen with smartphone portability”–practically bragging about how big the phone is.
In between, we’ve had the Kindle’s continuing evolution, the Nook, the iPad, the HTC Tablet–tablets are everywhere. All the aborted attempts to introduce popular tablets have been forgotten. Even the stylus tablets are beginning to rise again in popularity.
The excitement that’s surrounded the release of the iPad 2 and speculation of the iPad 3, combined with the non-stop attention the new Kindle releases got yesterday indicate this isn’t slowing anytime soon. There are schools that are giving iPads to every student.
A Harris poll from last year showed that 1 in 10 American adults owned an e-reader, and the iPad and other tablets were included in those numbers, according to this infographic from Good. (Click through for a larger version.)
[Top image: Flickr user Thuymido]