first cellphones

First Cellphones: Most Notable Vintage Cellphones



Cellphones, mobile phones, hand-held phones, and hand phones are all the same thing.

These cellular devices are portable versions of the antique telephone that allows the user to receive and make calls or text messages to any other cell phone within the service area.

The earliest form of first cellphones was tiresome to carry, considerably large, and had antennas that extended.

At present, cellphones mass-produced by companies – like iPhones and Galaxy Notes among many others – are bought instantly by customers once more updated versions were available.

Phones nowadays also include multiple features like taking pictures, creating documents, or even accessing the web.

In earlier times, you would need to buy other gadgets to fulfill these needs.

Are you interested in knowing what people used to communicate? What were the first cellphones like?

Get to know more about the phones we would call “ancient” now below.

The Invention of the Telephone


Before we start talking about the old mobile phones, the history of the first communication device to receive calls was the telephone.

In the early 1870s, the two known inventors of the first telephone were Alexander Graham Bell and Elisha Gray.

After fighting through a legal battle, Bell won the case, pronouncing him as the inventor of the first telephone.

Patent of the Telephone; (Source:

He drew the inspiration of the telephone through the telegraph and called its prototype a “harmonic telegraph” for music notes with different pitches.

He soon collaborated with Thomas Watson, who suggested that they discover a way to transmit human voices instead.

The First Cellphone


Motorola Inc.’s Martin Cooper and John F. Mitchell manufactured the DynaTAC 8000x in the 1980s. This was the first cellphone to be made and reproduced commercially.

It was the original “brick” phone due to its size and its weight at an estimate of two kilograms.

This device astounded the world, and its popularity naturally came, especially for corporate workers.

In 1973, Dr. Martin Cooper used the prototype of the DynaTAC to make the first cellphone call in which he contacted his friend, who worked from an opponent company, AT&T.

Motorola sold the device to many at around 4000 USD. 

Vintage Phones


1.    Motorola’s 9800X

Additionally, before the launch of Motorola’s world-changing cellphone, Japan had already released the first automated cellular network (1G) commercially in 1979.

After the release of Motorola’s DynaTAC 8000x, the same company then launched the Motorola 9800X, a pocket cellular phone in 1989, which included a flip cover for the keyboard.

The second generation of cellular networks (2G) followed in 1991, which was the first to be available in Europe, allowing one to send messages with pictures and multimedia to others.


2.    The Simon

1994 was the year of the first mobile phone with a touch screen.

International Business Machines (IBM) created The Simon, which featured the earliest version of what we know as applications or “apps” today.

This phone had widgets like a calendar, a notepad, a world clock, and could send and receive e-mails and faxes.

If you thought the first game on a cellphone was Nokia’s Snake, you are mistaken!

IBM was the first to launch a phone with a puzzle game called Scramble wherein you would have to move boxes to create a picture.

Unfortunately, this device slowly phased out from the market because of its battery, lasting only for an hour, and the emergence of flip phones, which were thinner in comparison to the Simon.


3.    Nokia 2110

Similarly, in 1994, the launch of the Nokia 2110 interested the masses worldwide because of its smaller size and a larger screen in comparison with other phones available then.

The Finnish company, Nokia, included various ringtones for the user, especially the first and most iconic ringtone of Nokia phones.

(You can listen to the ringtone here.)

The company’s ideal target was to sell 400,000 phones.

To their surprise, they sold 20 million units of the Nokia 2110 globally.


4.    Hagenuk MT-2000

Another mobile phone from the early 1990s was the Hagenuk MT-2000 from Denmark.

This invention was responsible for introducing the Tetris game in cellphones!

The Hagenuk MT-2000 defeated the predecessor of the Nokia 2110, the Nokia 1011, because of the development of Tetris on the phone.

This discovery made mobile TV high-definition, video calls, and IP telephony possible.


5.    Blackberry 950

With the release of Blackberry’s 950 in the year 2000, the company was able to change the business world.

This phone allowed web browsing and had a QWERTY keyboard. It was made to have two versions of the same device, but with different features.

The user was able to access online mailboxes through the Internet Edition while the Exchange Edition connected corporate mailboxes on Microsoft Exchange.

Because of the Exchange Edition, Blackberry phones then became in-demand and dominated the corporate industry.

In the same year, the J-SH04 by Sharp was released in Japan — this was the first phone to have a camera.


6.    Motorola V3

The Motorola V3 was released in 2004 and took the market in a whirlwind as the thinnest flip phone available then.

It had a keypad that was electroluminescent and supported a micro-USB for storing data and an input jack for headphones.

Motorola introduced V3 to the market as an “exclusive fashion phone” because of its slim features. After four years, Motorola had sold over 130 million of V3 phones.

This milestone made the Motorola V3 have a record of the all-time highest number of clamshell phone units sold worldwide.

Its distinguishable hot pink model was made available in the market in 2005 to raise funds for the Rethink Breast Cancer cause. 

The Start of A New Era of Phones

In June 2007, Apple introduced to the world the first iPhone and in the following year, the first Android phone filled the shelves.

Companies like Windows, Samsung, Google, and Xiao Mi has then followed the trend of these phones, manufacturing the phones we know today.

The rest is history.

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