Steven Blum has written more than 2,000 blog posts as a founding member of AndroidPIT's English editorial team. A graduate of the University of Washington, Steven Blum also studied Journalism at George Washington University in Washington D.C. for two years. Since then, his writing has appeared in The Stranger, The Seattle P-I, Blackbook Magazine and Venture Villlage. He loves the HTC One and hopes the company behind it still exists in a few years.
It's Friday and with all these apps and gadgets we have to review before the weekend, we're feeling a bit nostalgic for simpler times -- you know, like when cell phones cost just under $600, weighed more than a brick and came with massive detachable battery backs. Come take a step back in time and enter the world of retro cell phone commercials...
The first known cell phone commercial was by a company named Centel. The ad focused on the various locales where one could take a cell phone; from a Jeep to a boat, through puddles and waves. Sure it was a big, bulky thing, but you could take it with you through herds of sheep! Oh, and of course, sex sells: there had to be at least one woman answering a phone call in her bathing suit.
Think those hidden Bluetooth receivers make people look schizophrenic? Turns out, the whole are-you-talking-on-a-phone-or-talking-to-me joke was actually born way back in 1996. Witness this vintage Sony Ericsson cell phone commercial wherein a lonely man thinks a woman is hitting on him when she's really making plans with her lover through a cell phone hidden in her big-ass hair.
While attempting to drill home the portability of a cell phone this Radio Shack ad inadvertantly drew attention to just how bulky and impractical early cell phones were. Bring it with you in your car -- though you'll have to keep it in the trunk! Take it to a business meeting, sit it down next to your salad, and from there its battery pack will stare down on your lunch like a black void.
Most old ads make us feel nostalgic for a time when everything was cheap, but sometimes we forget just how expensive all the technology around us used to be. This price-driven, minimalistic cell phone ad by the late Highland Superstores focuses on how cheap their cell phones were -- just $595! But your friends will think you've paid even more...
GE never became a very big name in the cell phone carrier world, and perhaps this ad proves why. Like in most infommercials, GE made sure to have a coked-up narrator, lots of flashing price tags and the kind of story-arc that leaves little to the imagination. Looks like the company was mostly after construction contractors here. Though, we must admit the slogan "The Affordable Portable" is actually pretty catchy.