When Martin Cooper stepped outside the Motorola offices on April 3rd, 1973, to call an acquaintance at a rival company, he could boast, quite accurately, that he was making a call from the street on the “first ‘real’ cellular telephone.”
Though the hardware Cooper was carrying was revolutionary, it had very little to do with the slab of 21st-century magic in your pocket today.
Motorola’s first commercial handset, the DynaTAC 8000x, arrived 10 years after that first call . The device was shaped like a brick. The battery was large and inefficient…and it cost $3,500.
Clunky as the first analog cellular phones were, they changed the world–and have evolved into much more than just speaking devices. Considering the amount of other things for which we we usually use them–email, text messaging, games–in addition to voice calls, it may even be time to reconsider the name “phone.” And, of course, wearable tech like Google’s Glass may foreshadow how mobile tech will evolve in the near future.
Here at Fast Company, we’ve owned a variety of phones over the years, and we bet you have, too. Some of you were kind enough to share your photos over Twitter with us–which gives us a fascinating, personal peep into 40 years of cell phone tech.
Got photos of your old mobile phones? Upload them it the comments section below!