Our modern world is increasingly shaped by the technology and devices we use each and every day. It can make our lives easier, provide enjoyment, entertainment, or vast amounts of information over the years. These devices were the most influential in their era and changed the perspective of humans.
Now it’s time to run down my list of the most influential devices of all time :
- 1 Nintendo Gameboy (1989)
- 2 Sony Walkman (1979)
- 3 Apple iPod (2001)
- 4 Blackberry Rim 6210 (2005)
- 5 Apple II (1977)
- 6 Samsung Galaxy Note series (2011)
- 7 Motorola StarTAC (1996)
- 8 Palm Pilot (1996)
- 9 IBM Simon (1994)
- 10 Motorola DynaTAC 8000x (1983)
- 11 Apple iPhone (2007)
Nintendo Gameboy (1989)
This is the portable game system, it’s called the Game Boy and unlike older handheld games they aren’t limited to one single game.
If you’re over the age of 21 there’s a pretty high chance that you would have enjoyed Game Boy or younger brother The Game Boy Color for a while there were all the rage and it seemed that addictive simple games and portability with a perfect combination for the day for those of you.
Sony Walkman (1979)
The Walkman was the iPod of its day. This was a portable music player, not a radio but real portable music player. Music lovers could now listen to their music on the go with this futuristic looking portable music player. This was the revolution and a pivotal point in technology and gadgets history. So, it made in the list of most influential devices of all time.
Sony Walkman virtually invented the concept of personal electronics. The Walkman was actually branded as the Stowaway Soundabout and the Freestyle until Sony finally stuck with the name Walker. The first few units featured two sets of headphone jacks, so you could share music with a friend and be social with your technology. The Walkman sold over 330 million units in its lifetime.
Apple iPod (2001)
The iPod single-handedly saved Apple Inc. from the grave in 2000. It was said that some of Apple’s board members were planning to sell the company but fast forward five years and by 2005 eight out of every ten portal players sold in retail where iPods.
The first iPod costs $400 and had a 5-gigabyte hard drive. The thing was it was only compatible with Macs from the second generation onwards windows compatibility came into the picture and literally the Scylla slimming white headphones with a symbol of the 2000s.
Blackberry Rim 6210 (2005)
This device made the mobile phone so smart all of a sudden. Users could have their emails, messaging and basic web browsing with them on the go along with all of the usual mobile phone functions. Blackberry became a term synonymous with the smartphone and a real luxury item, of course, Apple’s iPhone in 2007 would change all of that but the Rim held the mantle for many years prior.
Apple II (1977)
Apple two is perhaps one of the most iconic computers and tech history. It was released in 1977, seven years before the original. “Macintosh-the apple two” was an 8-bit home computer and the first highly successful mass-produced microcomputer product at that time. It had a 1 megahertz processor and 128 kilobytes of RAM and an audio cassette interface for loading programs and storing data. It was designed by Steve Wozniak and built by Apple. It ran integer basic as its operating system, this was an enormous and most influential devices of all time.
Samsung Galaxy Note series (2011)
This next one isn’t one device but a series of devices and you can probably guess which series yep it’s the Galaxy Note series. It was the note series that spawned the tablet phone trend and drove the screen size of virtually every device. Upwards companies could now think well, Samsung’s got a 5.7-inch device selling like hotcakes. So an extra point five inches of the screen really nail other devices. It made people realize that phones could be actually a lot more than commonly thought, of course, the note series wasn’t perfect but it spoke hints of things to come.
Motorola StarTAC (1996)
Before the StarTAC, mobile phones were literally bricks. Motorola shocked people with this incredibly small device and a unique design. Yes, it was the very first clamshell phone. The form factor that would set the design standard for mobile phones for years to come but that wasn’t all this phone pioneered. The vibrating ring was also present. The StarTAC helped drive mobile phones into the mainstream selling around 60 million units in its lifetime. Due to its look and features, it made in the list of most influential devices of all time and it was an enormous success.
Palm Pilot (1996)
It looks like 1996 was a big year for technology because coming in the mighty Palm Pilot from 1996, of course, this is where the Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) went mainstream, of course, there was actually Apple that beat palm to the punch a few years earlier with the Newton. But really the Newton wasn’t designed well and had poor handwriting recognition which was supposed to be its main selling point, on the other hand, the Palm Pilot gave professionals freedom from PCs for the very first time with syncable address books, date book, a memo pad and much more.
IBM Simon (1994)
This was pretty much the first smartphone ever conceived. It had everything to make it a smartphone but way before its time. It had a 4.5-inch touchscreen with no buttons, it could send and receive faxes and emails. It contains an address book, a calendar, an appointment scheduler, a calculator, a world time clock and electronic notepad, handwritten annotations and much more. This was 20 years ago, the IBM Simon was literally just too advanced for the time and people back then. People didn’t have a clue what they’re looking at but, of course, the IBM Simon’s legacy would be picked up many years later. As per high features at that time, it is considered to be one of the most influential devices of all time.
Motorola DynaTAC 8000x (1983)
If you don’t know, this was the very first mobile phone. The one that started it all and this one cost $4,000 which would be the equivalent to more than $10,000 today. The team that actually put the parts together in this did an extraordinary job but they have to squeeze thousands of parts into this phone. The industrial designers also did a superb job but their design was big and it was shaped like bricks. By the time the engineers got done and ended up with two and a half pounds i.e. over a kilo. A very substantial part of that first phone was in fact battery and even then we had a battery that weighed four or five times more than an entire cell phone does today. The battery life was 20 minutes but that wasn’t really a big problem because you couldn’t hold that phone up for 20 minutes.
Apple iPhone (2007)
Apple is going to reinvent the phone, what else can I say. This was the device that changed how people think about the mobile phones. The phone was no longer something you just made calls with and did organizational tasks.
Now the phone could be basically anything that you imagined. the key of iPhone was the screen technology and the App Store. Most touchscreen phones around the 2007 period were using resistive touchscreen technology, which was slow clunky and just hard to use.
Steve Jobs was adamant to cram capacitive touchscreen technology into this device. Capacitive touchscreen technology is incredibly accurate, slick and it allowed for easy multi-touch gestures.
I can’t leave it here because there is a little bit of controversy between the LG Prada and the iPhone, as the LG Prada went on sale one month before the iPhone and had a similar overall concept but as history tells us the iPhone proved to be one of the most influential devices of all time.
So there you have it, the top most influential devices of all time, without some of these devices our modern society could have been quite a bit different today.