How Much Did Smartphone Technology Cost 30 Years Ago?

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Technology has been growing and improving at a staggering rate over the last 30 years. The smartphone you probably are reading this article on had more technology and technological memory than the rocket we used to put man on the Moon. Listed below is technology from 30 years ago and there price (inflated for 2016 dollars). It’s amazing how technology has advanced to the point that all of these useful tools are accessible at any given time, in all of our pockets.

Mobile Phone
motorola_dynatac 1986 – Motorola DynaTAC = $9,000
2016 – Any Phone (with a contract) = $20-$250

Text Message Capabilities
fax-machine-intro 1986 – Fax Machine = $1,105
2016 – Included in all phones (SMS) = FREE

Portable GPS
Global positioning system receiver. Magellan "NAV 1000" hand-held GPS receiver with mock display. 2010.0118.01.

1986 – Magellan GPS NAV 1000 = $6,630
2016 – Included in all phones (Google Maps, Apple Maps, etc.) = FREE

Voice Recorder
$_1 1986 – CTR-70 = $110
2016 – Included in all phones = FREE

Digital Watch
601-400x500 1986 – Casio DBC 600 = $45
2016 – Included in all phones = FREE

Portable Music Player
download 1986 – Sony D-50 Discman = $400
2016 – Included in all phones = FREE

Encyclopedias
britannica 1986 – Encyclopedia Britannica = $2,210
2016 – Included in all phones (Google, Chrome, Safari) = FREE

Radio
$_1 (1)
1986 – Sony CFD-444 Boom Box = $640
2016 – Included in all phones (Podcasts) = FREE

Video Game Consoles
Nintendo_Entertainment_System_Model 1986 – Nintendo Entertainment System = $440
2016 – Included in all phones (App stores) = FREE

Portable Television
mb2jPb72TGoBaKS9UbUM-aA 1986 – Casio Mini Color TV = $665
2016 – Included in all phones (Youtube, hulu) = FREE

Film Camera
film116_b 1986 – Canon Sprint QD = $295
2016 – Included in all phones = FREE

Video Camera
1-sv8af-b_0 1986 – Sony CCD-V8 = $3,745
2016 – Included in all phones = FREE

Video Player
VCR-103 1986 – Standard VCR = $1,105
2016 – Included in all phones = FREE

Video Conferencing Capabilities
Back-to-the-Future-II 1986 – Future System Incorporated (plus usage fees) = $110,520
2016 – Included in all phones (Skype, Facetime) = FREE

Processing Power
Cray2_021 1986 – Cray-2 supercomputer; 1.9 GFLOPS (Appox. 5 Gigabytes of data) = $32,000,000
2016 – Included in all phones (1.9 GFLOPS (Appox. 5 Gigabytes of data) = FREE

Total Cost for Technology in 1986 = $32,136,910
Total Cost for Technology in 2016 = FREE, Included

$32,136,910 in 1986 could buy:

16009305_0_zbAvj7_t 109 standard homes ($292,850)
1986-lincoln-mark-vii-lsc-photo-166304-s-429x262 957 standard cars ($33,560)
+AW-Mac-Plus-computer-555-550x582
84,795 standard home computers ($379)

 

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