The first smartphone in the world was the IBM Simon, which was produced 15 years before the launch of the iPhone.
The term smartphone for smart cell phones began to be used in 1995, but the first true smartphone made its debut three years earlier in 1992. His name was Simon Personal Communicator and was created by IBM over 15 years before Apple’s first iPhone was launched.
Simon from IBM was the first phone to combine the functions of a mobile phone and a PDA device, a kind of portable personal computer – a PDA (Personal Digital Assistant). Originally, its price started from $ 899, concluding a contract with the operator. According Byte magazine, converted into today’s realities, would currently cost about USD 1,435 (PLN 5,280).
Simon was way ahead of his time. It was equipped with a 4.4-inch, monochrome and touchscreen LCD that was operated with a stylus. In addition to making calls, it could be used to send and receive e-mails and faxes. It had a good set of built-in features such as note taking, an address book, calendar, world clock, and meeting planner. His target group at that time was only wealthy businessmen who often traveled around the world.
Interestingly, the first smartphone could also run applications from other manufacturers. However, it was necessary to obtain additional memory or a special PC card (Press Release).
While Simon has never been as successful as the iPhone or other Android smartphones, IBM sold around 50,000 (according to Bloomberg Businessweek).
In the video below you can see the review of the Simon Personal Communicator smartphone and how it looked in action (via TekGadg).
source: BusinessInsider – The world’s first smartphone, Simon, was created 15 years before the iPhone