Many of us nowadays can’t imagine our lives without our smartphones. We use our phones not just to make calls and send messages, but also to transport a variety of other essential goods, place orders, the list goes on.

It felt like a distant fantasy while cell phones were still in development. An article from the Mansfield News Journal in 1963 has recently gone viral on the internet, revealing how people perceived smartphones at the time. 

An old newspaper article predicting the future of mobile phones goes viral 

According to the post, an article published in a newspaper in 1963 claimed that individuals all over the world would be able to carry mobile phones in their pockets in the future. The article, titled ‘You’ll be able to carry phone in pocket in future,’ also featured a representative image of a mobile device carried by a woman that accurately resembles a modern day flip-phone. 

The viral newspaper item was published on April 18, 1963, in the Mansfield, Ohio New Journal.

The post advised readers not to anticipate the technology to be released anytime soon because it was still in the laboratory, according to the report. The newspaper article that is making the rounds on the internet was shared on the History in Pictures Twitter feed.

“This telephone is far in the future-commercially,” said Frederick Hunstman, commercial manager of the telephone company. 

“Someday, Mainfielders will carry their phones in their pockets,” according to the news story. “However, don’t anticipate it to be accessible tomorrow. It’s currently a laboratory development, but it’s functional, allowing the carrier to make and answer calls wherever he is.” 

Mobile phones became commercially available after the 1980s 

Old mobile phones

For those who are unaware, mobile phones did not become commercially available until the 1980s, decades after the news piece was published in a newspaper. 

Initially, Nikola Tesla was one of the primary pioneers who predicted that people all over the world will be able to connect to each other quickly with technology that would fit easily in a vest pocket. 

The viral newspaper article also claimed that devices will enable capabilities such as loudspeakers so that even if a person is engaged in doing something, they will be able to chat via a loudspeaker phone. 

“Other telephones of the future include a kitchen loud-speaking telephone and a visual image telephone. The Kitchen instrument can be used as a regular telephone, a loud-speaking phone if the housewife happens to be busy preparing a meal, or an intercom station for the home,” the newspaper clipping read. 

The article also forecast the trend of video calling, predicting that individuals will be able to watch other parties speak via a little television camera. The technology was known as the ‘TV phone’ at the time.

“A small television camera sends the image while a microphone and loudspeaker allow the participants to interact.” In addition, texting was hinted at: “The ‘TV phone’ will also include a writer signature transmission system and a conversation tape recorder.”

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