If you own at least one outdated gadget, put your hand in the air and wave it like you just don’t care. No? Okay, well I still own a non-flat screen black and white TV. You know, the bulky ones that still need you to use an aerial antenna to get a TV signal.
Like most people, I don’t mind using outdated gadgets. I could go about my everyday life using ancient technology. Hey, I’ve seen people make calls from a payphone and others subscribe to dial up internet.
According to the Consumer Electronics Association, 60% of people don’t mind waiting a long time before upgrading to newer and better technology. Only 13-15% are enthusiastic about adopting new technology.
I’m guessing people hesitate to upgrade because they prefer the simplicity of what they already have. Before I bought my very first smartphone, I liked my Nokia C2 just fine. And when I finally bought my smartphone, it took me nearly two weeks to finally use it properly.
Below are 11 outdated gadgets I bet some of you owned at one particular point in time:
This is probably the oldest word processor that you can buy today. Your children probably won’t understand (depending on when they were born) that there was a time when we didn’t have computers, smartphones and tablets.
When this gadget first hit the market, it was considered the most sophisticated device a professional could own. I mean, could it get any better than owning something that could type and print simultaneously?
Too bad, it didn’t come with a copy-paste, backspace or save-documents feature. If it did, then it would have been epic, don’t you think?
10. Rotary Telephones
Ha! When you look back at it, wasn’t this the most ridiculous thing ever invented? Seriously, someone sat down and decided that they would come up with a contraption where you would insert your fingers and move the dial to each of the numbers you want to make a call.
The good thing is we moved to buttons, then to touchscreens. Although, you could get a rotary phone and use it to decorate your house if you’re going for that rustic feel.
9. Compact Film Cameras
So here’s how these cameras worked:
- Take a photo
- Develop the film
- Take the photos and negatives home. (A negative is that picture that appears on a sheet of transparent film. It’s what is used to print your picture on a photographic paper.)
The worst thing about these film cameras is that you couldn’t preview your picture after it was taken and neither could you delete it. But that was the fun part.
Now we have smartphones with built-in high-resolution cameras that take clearer pictures. Combine that with a selfie stick and you can snap away as many pictures as you like. And if you don’t like how they look, you can always Photoshop them to look the way you want.
8. Floppy Disc
The irony of these floppy discs is that they weren’t floppy at all. Back then, they were used to transfer data from one computer to another. They had a maximum memory space of 1.44 MB, so technically you couldn’t upload more than two photos onto them.
I don’t think the floppy disk is coming back any time soon, seeing as how nobody makes computers with a slot for inserting them anymore.
And why would you need to save data onto something that can only fit probably one photo and a word document, when you can save a whole lot more on a flash drive or in some cloud storage space?
Okay, who here ever rented a movie on VHS and had to rewind it before returning it to the video store? No? Then you must be what I call the “Netflix generation.” But don’t worry, you can still transport yourself back to the mid-90s by buying a VCR online. I hear Toshiba still makes and sells them.
You can use it to record your favorite TV shows and boast to your friends that you own this outdated relic of a gadget.
6. Nintendo Game Boy
This was a simplistic video game system that we used to entertain ourselves with long before the days of HD and online multi-player. It came with different types of popular games like Baseball, Tennis, Tetris and Super Mario. It had a greyish-greenish screen and it used AA batteries. It came into existence in 1989 but it faced some fierce competition from other brands like Atari Lynx and Sega Game Gear.
We now have popular game consoles like the Sony PlayStation $, Microsoft Xbox One and Nintendo Wii U. In fact, people are actually making a living from being professional gamers…something they probably wouldn’t have thought of doing with the Nintendo Game Boy.
5. Nokia 3310
Forget about the iPhone. The Nokia 3310 is still one of the best phones ever invented. It had the most annoying ringtone but it was compact and affordable. It’s known for being indestructible. In fact, some smartphone companies could learn a thing or two from the inventors of the 3310.
I bet there are some people who’d be glad to use one of these devices because of how non-technical and simple they are. They don’t need to take selfies or update their statuses on Facebook…they just want to access the basic functionality of a phone.
So if you have a Nokia 3310 lying around somewhere and you are looking to get rid of it, you can always find someone to take it off your hands.
Remember when we used to play cassettes on a cassette player? They were pretty popular back in the day. In 1979, Sony rolled out the Walkman so people could play their cassettes on the go. All you had to do was get yourself some flimsy form earphones, spare batteries and a stash of cassettes.
You couldn’t choose a specific song that you wanted to listen to using the Walkman. And you had to turn over the cassette to the other side once you finished listening to one side. Sometimes the Walkman would go crazy and chew up the tape. I still don’t know how we ever used this gadget, but it was pretty revolutionary back in the day.
Cassettes were replaced with CDs and so the Discman was invented, making the Walkman obsolete (thank God, right?). But the Discman was probably the most annoying thing ever invented. If you walked too fast while carrying it, the CD would skip. You couldn’t even go jogging with it because the CD would skip.
Thank goodness the iPod was eventually invented. Nowadays most people upload all their downloaded music onto their iPods. Some laptops even come without a CD drive because music can be downloaded or streamed online.
Nope, PDA here does not stand for public display of affection…it stands for personal digital assistant. Sound pretty cool, right? Well, back in the day this device was popularly known as a handheld PC.
It came with most of the features you find on today’s laptops and smartphones. It had internal applications for web browser, email, calendar and word processing. You could even install new apps on it. Did I mention that it had Wi-Fi connections and a touch screen?
This small bulky device was a status symbol for any businessperson back in the ’90s and early 2000s. But people ditched them soon as mobile phones and smartphones came out.
Ah…the pager. Just like the PDA this was another great status symbol in the early ’90s. If you carried one, it meant you were someone important like a surgeon or the owner of a fortune 500 company and you needed to be reachable at all times.
It didn’t take long for pagers to be replaced with cellphones. Cellphones were way more convenient than the pager because you could receive and reply to text messages directly, but with the pager, you had to rush to the nearest phone to reply to a page.
In 2012, Americans bought approximately 10,000 pager units. So even though they are obsolete, people still use them. My guess is they use them as an excuse to avoid phone conversations.