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Smartphones circa 1993

Back in 1993, Apple was still focused on the Mac II when IBM took the world by storm with the first smartphone called "Simon" (named for the game "Simon Says".) BellSouth was the only cell service provider that offered Simon. One could have been yours for $900.

Simon weighed a little over a pound and included a 4 1/2- by 1 1/2-inch LCD touchscreen display. It was a pager, an email device, a calendar, an appointment scheduler, an address book, and a pen-based sketchpad. The image IBM painted for their device was a "hip G.I. Joe Walkie Talkie."

As BellSouth's marketing described the smartphone, "Simon looks and acts like a cellular phone but offers much more than voice communications". Simon had an x86-compatible CPU, a fax modem, a PC card slot, and 11 built-in programs.

Only 2,000 Simons were ever made, and the majority of them were eventually returned to BellSouth and destroyed. We'll bet if you had a Simon today, it would probably be worth more than nine hundred bucks.

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