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[TV] Microsoft almost invented the smartphone... in 1991

post #1 of 45
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Quote:
The gadget would let you manage your schedule, use GPS to figure out where you were, and serve as a communication device that would give you access to email, fax, and paging services. But it looks like it was a little too costly for Microsoft's blood, and the company passed even though Myhrvold believed that the device could be sold for between $400 and $1,000. "Microsoft certainly could have done more about it," he admits.

http://www.theverge.com/2012/4/13/2946388/microsoft-nathan-yhrvold-original-smartphone-1991
post #2 of 45
Shoulda woulda coulda
post #3 of 45
I have a feeling it would have failed for one simple reason; the technology was way to far ahead of itself. I mean look at touch screens. Invented over 40 years ago, just now taking a hold of the market.
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post #4 of 45
Not like it matters.. Apple wasn't the first smartphone like this article is insinuating. Old "dumbphone" Symbian devices can do anything the iPhone can do and Windows Mobile could do far more. The only reason it failed was because the horrible UI... Same for Symbian. The UI was one of the reasons Google plastered their Android OS with a touch-friendly UI in light of the iPhone in 07. I will give them credit for taking the smartphone to a popular level, but as far as creating the segment: No.
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post #5 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by BizzareRide View Post

Not like it matters.. Apple wasn't the first smartphone like this article is insinuating. Old "dumbphone" Symbian devices can do anything the iPhone can do and Windows Mobile could do far more. The only reason it failed was because the horrible UI... Same for Symbian. The UI was one of the reasons Google plastered their Android OS with a touch-friendly UI in light of the iPhone in 07. I will give them credit for taking the smartphone to a popular level, but as far as creating the segment: No.

Symbian did anything new?
The late 80s PDA/Smartphone had similar features too.
404px-Apple_Newton-IMG_0454-cropped.jpg
Edited by PoopaScoopa - 4/14/12 at 5:46am
post #6 of 45
I'm sure we can find a guy, who knows a guy, that saw someone who told other people about a guy who got the idea in 15th century Europe. The thing is, it doesn't matter if it was never actually done.
Edited by Xenthos - 4/14/12 at 6:21am
post #7 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by joshd View Post

I have a feeling it would have failed for one simple reason; the technology was way to far ahead of itself. I mean look at touch screens. Invented over 40 years ago, just now taking a hold of the market.

This. I also remember news about Microsoft making amazing tables several years ago, but people didn't make the switch.
post #8 of 45
Almost only counts in Horse Shoes and Hand Grenades tongue.gif
     
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post #9 of 45
If I stand back 50 feet, it sort of looks like the iPhone. I think MS should start sueing.

Would have been interesting to see what it would be like today if they did go through with it.
post #10 of 45
Pointless news is pointless.

313

The 3rd one is apparently something from 1991, which seems about right. The technology simply wasn't there and yeah, expensive is an understatement, even by today's standard smartphones are a luxury. MS had so much more going on at the time and have made fortunes since, I doubt they regret it. The idea was way ahead of its time, was nothing more than an optimistic pitch.
Edited by Allen86 - 4/14/12 at 8:01am
    
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