The World’s First Mobile Phone / Music Player — In 1922

From the vault of British Pathe, a 1922 newsreel on the portable calling and music device which was that year’s hot accessory for the savvy urban woman on the street. The brave new technological advances of the past few years are maybe not as novel as one might believe, and I think these could be a popular niche item if sold today, even:

World’s First Mobile Phone (1922). Found by a researcher in the Pathe vaults, this clip from 1922 shows that 90 years ago, mobile phone technology and music on the move was not only being thought of but being trialled.

20 Comments on "The World’s First Mobile Phone / Music Player — In 1922"

  1. Anonymous | Oct 19, 2011 at 6:35 pm |

    In 1922, “mobile” was a very relative term as it was with the boombox or chello.

  2. In 1922, “mobile” was a very relative term as it was with the boombox or chello.

  3. I won’t waste too much time lusting after the mobile phone of 1922, but having now gazed upon the two gorgeous lasses beta-testing the phone, I can see it’s gonna be a long night trying to figure out how to transport myself back to the England of 1922 for a bit of British-American friendship.

    Which, by the way, is one of the unsung advantages of time-travel: putting the smoove moves of 2011 on unsuspecting / unsophisticated women-folk of the past.

    Just sayin’.

  4. I won’t waste too much time lusting after the mobile phone of 1922, but having now gazed upon the two gorgeous lasses beta-testing the phone, I can see it’s gonna be a long night trying to figure out how to transport myself back to the England of 1922 for a bit of British-American friendship.

    Which, by the way, is one of the unsung advantages of time-travel: putting the smoove moves of 2011 on unsuspecting / unsophisticated women-folk of the past.

    Just sayin’.

  5. Wireless technology was and will ever be telephonic.

  6. Wireless technology was and will ever be telephonic.

  7. idk.. looks fake..

  8. steam punked 

  9. steam punked 

  10. Well made, but fake.

  11. Well made, but fake.

    • Or rather, if the film is genuinely dated, the technology proposed in it would be unable to function in the world of 1922 but would be an interesting proposal for future technologies.

      • Secretlab | Oct 23, 2011 at 9:42 pm |

        Not fake. Purely 1920’s technology. I don’t think they’re transmitting in those street shots, although technology available at that time might have permitted wireless signalling over a short distance from such a tiny rig: the girl without the umbrella could be sending code, if you look very carefully. But, it’s never really used as a two-way “‘phone.”

        So, it’s not a mobile phone…it’s a most likely a simple radio receiver in a small box with an umbrella antenna and a ground lead connected to a fire plug for good measure. The transmitter end is typical of low powered experimental AM radio transmitters of the time. The DJ’s are pretty awesome, though!

  12. Or rather, if the film is genuinely dated, the technology proposed in it would be unable to function in the world of 1922 but would be an interesting proposal for future technologies.

  13. Or rather, if the film is genuinely dated, the technology proposed in it would be unable to function in the world of 1922 but would be an interesting proposal for future technologies.

  14. Fake for sure

  15. Fake for sure

  16. Secretlab | Oct 24, 2011 at 1:42 am |

    Not fake. Purely 1920’s technology. I don’t think they’re transmitting in those street shots, although technology available at that time might have permitted wireless signalling over a short distance from such a tiny rig: the girl without the umbrella could be sending code, if you look very carefully. But, it’s never really used as a two-way “‘phone.”

    So, it’s not a mobile phone…it’s a most likely a simple radio receiver in a small box with an umbrella antenna and a ground lead connected to a fire plug for good measure. The transmitter end is typical of low powered experimental AM radio transmitters of the time. The DJ’s are pretty awesome, though!

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