80s Cell Phones

Cell phones are a necessary item for many people today, even replacing the home phone altogether.

The convenience and sense of security offered by cell phones is unbeatable.

You no longer have to stay home to receive an important call and if your car breaks down, you can call for help.

Almost everyone carries this technology nowadays, but it all started with innovative 80s cell phones.

Before the tiny cell phones of today, the only options were the car phone and the bag phone. The car phone had to be permanently installed in the console of the car, using a large battery pack that the hand piece was attached to with a cord.

The bag phone was a slightly smaller, more portable version of the car phone. This phone came with a carrying case and sometimes even a fashionable fanny pack that would hold the clunky battery.

Motorola - It took 10 years and $110 million to develop, but the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X—which stood for Dynamic Adaptive Total Area Coverage—started a technological revolution. Commonly referred to as the brick, this was truly the beginning of the completely portable phone with no cords or wires. It was also the first cell phone approved by the FCC and small enough to be portable.

Unlike today’s cell phones, this phone came in only three color combinations — dark grey, tan and grey, and tan and white. However, if you wanted this technology you had to be prepared to shell out $3,995 for it.

In 1989, Motorola made history again with the MicroTAC 9800X. This was the smallest, lightest phone on the market at the time. It was essentially the first flip phone, and came with a hefty price tag of anywhere between $2,500 and $3,500, depending on where in the country you lived.

In 1984, Nokia gave us the Mobria Talkman, which was one of the first of its kind, weighing a mere 11 pounds. It had a giant battery pack that connected to the hand piece with a cord. It was still technically a mobile phone, but it took a lot of lugging.

In 1987, the more well received—and lighter, weighing in at just under two pounds and with no cord—Nokia Cityman hit the market.

Not only were the phones expensive—even by today’s standards—but you would also be charged 45 cents per minute for your call. If your call was long distance, it was an additional 25 cents per minute. There was also a monthly fee of $40 to $50 for the service, which didn’t include any minutes.

The decade of the 80s saw some big changes in technology. They may have been big and bulky, but 80s cell phones were the start of the indispensible phones of the future.

80s style bag cell phone.