Count Your Blessings This Thanksgiving: A Look at Wireless Evolution

Showing an appreciation for innovation in the mobile realm.

By on November 27, 2013

Smartphones and other mobile devices have become an integral part of our daily lives, and this Thanksgiving we’re thankful for great improvements and innovation in wireless technology over the years.  

It’s hard to believe that the first generation of mobile phones released in the mid-1990s featured large, brick-shaped bodies with giant antennas and the occasional wrist strap for “convenient” carrying. Mobile phones didn’t even come in more colors than dull black or grey until 1998.                                                                                                        
The first camera phone was not introduced until 2002 when Nokia released its 7650 model, which featured a 0.3 megapixel camera. To put that in perspective, the Samsung Galaxy S 4 has a 13 megapixel camera. We’ve certainly come a long way in a little over 10 years.

The first popular phone with music playback features was introduced in 2005. The Sony Walkman W800i gave users the ability to carry more than 120 songs on their mobile phones to listen to whenever they wanted. Revolutionary at the time, but a seemingly small number when compared to today’s devices that can hold more than 20,000 songs.

Since the introduction of smartphones in the late 2000s, they’ve become the go-to mobile devices for many people, but another device has emerged as a top contender in recent years: the tablet.

If mobile phones have evolved faster than any other device in recent history, then tablets are a close second. The Linus Write Top, released in 1987, was the one of the first handwriting recognition tablets, which meant users could write on the screen using a plastic stylus pen.

After the release of the extremely popular PalmPilot PDA in 1997, it became clear that tablets were a growing option in the technology world. And while many people picture the tablets of today when they think of them, the first PC tablet prototype was actually created by Microsoft in 2000. The Tablet PC was designed to run productivity apps such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint; provide Internet connectivity; and allow the user to write on the screen with a stylus.

There is certainly a lot to be thankful for in terms of the great leaps and strides wireless technology has made in such a short period of time. It will be interesting to see what the next 20 years of innovation will bring.