Early in the life of the mobile phone, virtually everyone who owned one looked like this guy: a white dude walking next to an aeroplane. This particular white man in a suit is seen borrowing his friend’s car phone — they used to all be tethered to cars — surely discussing some stock or impending visit to an embassy. If you wanted to stray from your car, tough luck.
But before we had real mobile phones, we had primitive versions — like this handset that dialled into the telephone network with a giant hip box. She pulls it off though.
Photo: Stacey/Fox Photos/Getty Images
Franck Piccard of France talks on his mobile phone after the Mens Super G Slalom event at the 1988 Winter Olympic Games in Calgary, Canada. Piccard won the gold medal with a time of 1:39.66 minutes.
Photo: Allsport UK /Allsport/Getty Images
An artist in New York takes a break from his exhibition to yell at someone over his mobile phone, circa 2000. By this point there are over 100 million mobile phones in the US.
Photo: AP/Suzanne Plunkett
Renato Ruggiero, Director General of the World Trade Organization uses two mobile phones prior to the Telecoms Talks at Geneva, Switzerland, on February 15, 1997. The negotiations had to wrap up my midnight that night. Twice the urgency requires twice the phone.
Photo: AP/Avi Ochayoun
Mobile phones quickly entered the mainstream — no longer were they the tools of politicians and Olympians. Even this person at a rock concert could have one.
Rudy Krolopp, lead designer of the first mobile phone, poses with Motorola’s first mobile phone DynaTAC8000X and its new RAZR mobile phone on April 5, 2005, in Schaumburg, Illinois. Dubbed “the brick”, the DynaTAC weighed in at just under a one kilogram, sold for $US3995 and would give you about a half-hour of talk time before it had to be recharged. And now we look back at the RAZR and laugh.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Rico Shen and AP/Donald Stampfli