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[WHEN PHONES WERE FUN: MOTOROLA STARTAC]
To understand why the Motorola StarTAC became one of the most popular cellphones of all time, it helps to remember that before it came along … “mobile” phones? Well, they were basically bricks with sticks attached. And not too long before that, they were literally the size of a suitcase!
So when the Motorola StarTAC hit the scene in 1996 (twenty-five years ago!), sporting a footprint smaller than an audio cassette and a design straight outta Star Trek? Well, to say it upended the entire industry would be a massive understatement. From clip-on accessories to unauthorized sequels to lawsuit-spawning knockoffs to branded companion products to bizarre revivals as late as the mid-oughts … it’s no exaggeration to say, 60 million sales later, that the Motorola StarTAC launched the era of fun phones.
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[ABOUT WHEN PHONES WERE FUN – MOTOROLA STARTAC]
This is the fourteenth in a series of MrMobile videos exploring the mobile tech world’s most vibrant period in design and experimentation. In “When Phones Were Fun,” Michael Fisher re-reviews cellphones from the golden age of mobile, the decade-long span from the turn of the century to approximately 2009.
When Phones Were Fun: Episode 14 features several Motorola StarTAC devices: one model 7868W from MrMobile’s family archives (thanks, bro); one apparently authentic Rainbow StarTAC 70; one counterfeit/re-engineered Rainbow StarTAC 130; and a variety of StarTAC-themed accessories purchased by MrMobile / Future plc. Motorola arranged an interview with Glenn Schultz, Product Development Leader, as a courtesy, but did not pay a fee or otherwise offer compensation in exchange for this coverage (nor did it preview or approve this content before publication). The lone sponsor of this video is Surfshark.
Mobile Phone Museum:
Vintage Mobile Phones on Reddit:
Remember when we wore cell phones on belts? This Motorola phone started the trend [CNet]:
Motorola says Q copies StarTAC [RCR Wireless News]:
Qualcomm Wins Judgment in Motorola Design Patent Case And Files New Claims for Infringement Against Motorola [Qualcomm]:
Motorola Flare [Mobilecollectors.net]:
Retro Tech: DynaTAC [MKBHD – YouTube]:
Palm Ad: Holiday [Mashby – YouTube]:
Lot 354 Star Trek: Enterprise (TV 2001-2005) – Communicator [thepropstore – YouTube]:
Star Trek Prop Enthusiasts [Facebook]:
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