What was the First Smartphone?
If you ask the average person on the street which was the first smartphone, you’re likely to get “iPhone” as the answer. And by many measures they might be right. The iPhone really was the first smartphone marketed primarily to the consumer. And it revolutionised the mobile market when it was released in 2007.
But smartphones have been around for over 20 years. Surprised? I was too at first. But before I get too far, let’s take a look at what defines a smartphone. Generally we define smartphones as having both a keyboard, calendar, and email at a minimum. Mostly they also incorporate a camera, a means of playing music and can run many of the applications that used to reside solely on laptops and PCs.
I remember sitting in meetings in the early 2000’s where the senior management would be silently texting away and checking email on their Blackberrys or mobile phones. The company I worked for at the time issued the devices to employees they thought needed them – usually project leaders that travelled frequently. And in the early days of the smartphone that was generally the case. Businesses adopted the smartphone long before the general consumer market.
So getting back to the question…what was the first smartphone? Who made it? And when?
Way back in 1992, IBM debuted the Simon. Amazingly it had a touchscreen, but required a stylus to use. You could check email, take notes, and use the calendar. As a bonus you could even send and receive fax messages. Yes, it had a fax capability. That’s something we don’t even consider for smartphones today (unless you’re using an online fax service via email). Though the Simon fits the definition of a smartphone, the device never caught on. So was it the first? That’s debatable as although it did exist it never really entered service. Maybe we should think of it more as a prototype.
It wasn’t until 1997 when Ericsson promoted their GS88 as a “smart phone” that the term “smartphone” took off. Purists will argue Nokia actually released the first modern smartphone a year earlier. According to TheNextWeb.com,the Nokia 9000 Communicator is “what many consider to be the quintessential smartphone”. But thanks to Ericsson’s marketing, smartphone is now the catchall term for phones with added capability.
And based on sales in 2013, Gartner reports that smartphone sales accounted for 53.6% of global mobile phone sales. It was the first year consumers bought more smartphones than basic phones. And surely that trend has accelerated in the meantime.
Android based phones accounted for about 78% of the sales worldwide, trouncing Apple’s iOS at just 15.6%.
I doubt there are too many people faxing from their phones these days. But smartphones do just about everything else. And that range will only increase as voice commands become ever more powerful, eliminating keypad use. Besides calling or texting, what’s your favorite smartphone activity? What new features do you think will emerge? Share your thoughts in a comment.
It’s the time of year when we wish friends and family Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. But how will you send your greetings? Should you be traditional and send a card, or follow the new trend using SMS messaging? This blog can help you decide.
SMS spam is a problem worldwide. But in the UK, we’re less likely to get it than many other countries. Find out why that is, see some examples, and how you can do your part to keep your SMS messages free of spam.
What is stopping YOU from using SMS technology in your organisation? Here are some of the lingering myths and misconceptions about using business SMS systems for marketing, or stakeholder engagement, that may be holding you back from benefiting from one of the most effective group communication tools available.
So what was the first ever smartphone available? Here we discuss whether it was the Simon from IBM back in 1992 or maybe the Ericsson GS88, or the Nokia 9000 communicator a year earlier. Whichever it's hard to imagine a world without smartphones yet almost as difficult to accept they've been around for 20 - 25 years.
Many organisations are looking to operate in a more environmentally friendly way. This includes everything from their office supplies, materials used in creating their products, and also choosing suppliers and vendors that are also environmentally aware. And now, SMS.
SMS was once considered to be a dead technology, but the humble text message has proved it’s around for the long haul. And what with Nokia reintroducing the iconic 3310 with its never-ending battery life and non-smart interface, straightforward texting fits right into our busy lifestyles.
For the second year in a row we’ve been selected by Corporate Vision Magazine as the best SMS platform and SMS Service in the UK. We earned those awards by working hard to make the best platform and offer friendly personal service. Read all about it here.
Comparing SMS and email marketing results for the 2015 holiday season, this article taps into reports from Expedia and Adobe to share important insights.