The History and Evolution of Smartphones

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It’s amazing how the big-sized odd-looking cellphone has come a long way to take the current slim and light-weight look. It took nearly 20 years to make useful cellphone for other applications besides talking and texting (in other words, being smart) since its commissioning in the decade 1970. Still, what we are acquainted with a smartphone look and function, the first generation of smartphones was nothing at that level. It required another 3 decades of journey, made by the smartphone, to reach its current form. And no one knows where this journey is heading to. Let me take you towards a roller coasting ride in this gadget-oriented smart life. We will recollect some memories of the old smartphones and try to find out the history and evolution of smartphones.

The History and Evolution of Smartphones

1992: The History and Evolution of Smartphones

One of the most renowned hardware manufacturers, IBM, claimed to invent the first-ever smartphone in history in the year 1992. IBM named the phone ‘Simon’. The ‘IBM Simon’ had some distinguishing features to justify its claim to be the first-ever smartphone. In addition to talking and texting, it was able to be used to send emails and fax. It also had a calendar, a scheduler, and a note. The touchscreen-enabled phone could run only for 1 hour. 

Unfortunately, when the phone was up for sale commercially in 1994, it was not received cordially in the market. Although the Simon did not make a huge cut in the market, it paved the way towards blossoming and evolving today’s smartphones. That’s why it is recognized as the world’s first smartphone.

The Birth of the Smartphone-IBM Simon

2000: The Developing Stage

With the advent of the 21st century, we saw a leaps and bounds improvement in information technology. The evolution of smartphones was continuing at its full pace. The ‘Blackberry’ phone came on the market with some advanced features in the early part of the 2000s. The phone was primarily designed to attract business and commercial use; later, it suddenly became popular among the mass people. The unique feature, one button for one letter, like the desktop keyboard, got serious attention among the young generation. Other special features were music, access to the internet, calendar, etc.

The Developing Stage-Blackberry

2007: The Rise of the iPhone

Steve Jobs is an invaluable name when it comes to smartphone and touch screen technology. His organization Apple Inc. announced the first-ever iPhone to be on the market in 2007. With the advent of the iPhone, the world smartphone industry took a remarkable turn-around with the inclusion of all the new technologies. The first-ever apple phone was sold at 6.1 million units.

The first 3G enabled smartphone i.e. iPhone provided the users with the full range of internet access. The increased memory size of 4GB and 8GB made it possible to store hundreds of music, videos, and other information. The apps industry started to grow since the invention of the iPhone. The battery life was also greatly improved with 8 hours of talking time which was unthinkable at that time.

There have been 29 inclusions of iPhone models since 2007 and each time the newer model has been able to surpass the previous one in adding more features and improving usability. Till now, the iPhone is one of the most popular smartphone brands and it seems that people are more attracted to it as the years gone by.

The Rise of the iPhone

2008: The Revolution of the Android

The Android operating system has hit the mobile industry by storm since its introduction in the year 2008. The android faced difficulty at the early stage competing with the iPhone and its IOS operating system. Later, it gained popularity and started to be used on most smartphone manufacturers including Samsung, Sony, HTC, Huawei, and Xiao MI, etc.

Do you know about the first smartphone that was run on the Android platform? It was ‘HTC Dream’. The two-part phone was unique in style where one part was dedicated to keyboard use only. The improved camera, battery life, and low cost made the phone widely recognized.

The Revolution of the Android

Nowadays, the best thing about the Android phone is its affordability. You can buy almost three Android phones with the same amount of money that is needed to buy a single iPhone. Besides, most smartphone companies are inclined towards the Android OS because it is an open-source platform with hundreds of new features adding with the invention of each version. 

Up and till now, 11 different versions of Android were made. Looking at its popularity and bright future, Google Inc. has bought the rights of Android in recent times. This may lead to a further rise of the Android in the coming days. All in all, we have to admit that the revolution of Android has made it possible to reach the smartphone at nook and corner of the world.

The Revolution of the Android

The Future of the Smartphone

It is hard to predict what’s coming next. The technology is evolving so fast that even the manufacturers cannot be sure where their products are heading. We already know about folding phones. Some of the companies have recently introduced folding phones in the market. Although these latest phones are yet to be popular among the mass people, the future looks bright.

In the coming years, we may see transparent smartphones. How amazing it will be! But for that to happen, we have to wait a few years. In the meantime, there may be more changes in terms of battery life, memory size, apps, and entertainment that we may forget the traditional desktop and laptop as smartphones will be able to replace them completely. Nowadays, smartphones can also be used as a webcam.


So, this was the journey towards the history and evolution of smartphones. Don’t ever think the road is finished yet; there are loads of inventions and evolutions to be made in the future. The IBM Simon helped the inventors to see the promises that smartphones can fulfill and they dreamt to build a better life for everyone. We will wait and be excited to see the further evolution in the smartphone industry. We hope now you have a clear idea about the history and evolution of smartphones.

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