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From Big to Small to Big: The Evolution of Mobile Phone Sizes

Bigger is better: Has it always been that way?
by Neps Firmalan | Dec 4, 2012
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Images not to scale

Take a look at you top-tier smartphone. Do you notice anything else aside from all it sporting the best handset tech can offer? None? Okay, wala nang paligoy-ligoy pa: Isn't it huge?!

Check out the 4.8-inch Galaxy S III, the 5-inch LG Optimus Vu, and the 4.5-inch Nokia Lumia 920. Heck, even the iPhone has embraced going bigger even though Apple has, historically, shied away from making a smartphone with a display larger than 3.5 inches.

Having a bigger display seems to be uso nowadays, and we like it due to the amount of eyecandy. However, interestingly enough, if you browse through the history of handsets, you'll see that this trend isn't exactly a constant. Here's another question: Can you remember the days when huge phones were baduy and small phones were cool.

FHM tracks the evolution of the mobile phone sizes and found that we seem to be experiencing a retrograde. Read on, you geeks...

Continue reading below ↓

1980s - Mid-1990s

We call it: The pioneer age, aka "your phone is large because you have no choice"

Characterized by:
The first commercially available cellular phones. You know, the ones that are blocky and huge and has those long, dark antennae for reception. Despite the fact that they might give you palm cramps, high-society peeps of those days use them like they don't give a crap.

Why this is so: Cut old school tech some slack. During this period, handset-making was (obviously) a far cry from what it is today. The companies of this period had not yet mastered making things fit in your pocket and were just content on spewing out models because them yuppies would buy anything.

Stand outs:

Motorola DynaTac 8000X (1982) - Widely regarded as the first commecrcially available mobile phone

Nokia Mobira Cityman (1987) - One of the first true-blue handsets from Nokia

Continue reading below ↓

IBM Simon Personal Communicator (1993) - Seen by many as the first smartphone, since it also included PDA (personal digital assistant) features like a calculator, email, fax, and scheduler.

NEXT: Mid-1990s - mid-2000s

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