Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 5th Jan 2014 20:19 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

I came across a website whose purpose was to provide a super detailed list of every handheld computing environment going back to the early 1970's. It did a great job except for one glaring omission: the first mobile platform that I helped develop. The company was called Danger, the platform was called hiptop, and what follows is an account of our early days, and a list of some of the "modern" technologies we shipped years before you could buy an iOS or Android device.

Written by one of Danger's first employees, Chris DeSalvo. Amazing detailed look at some of the revolutionary things Danger did - years before iOS and Android.

It should come as no surprise that I loved this article. I hate how everything is framed as "iOS/Android invented this" - while in fact, both of those platforms rely very, very, very heavily on those that came before, such as PalmOS and Danger.

Thread beginning with comment 579963
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
"Always On" = Genius
by tupp on Sun 5th Jan 2014 23:11 UTC
tupp
Member since:
2006-11-12

From the article:

We called the device hiptop [snip]. It was the first always-on, internet-connected smartphone.

Which means that other smart phones already existed that could connect to the Internet, but due to the noted condition that this device defaulted to "always-on," the author and his fellow ex-Apple buddies were geniuses.

Why do Apple people (and ex-Apple people) always have to rely on adding trivial/arbitrary conditions to argue the distinctiveness of a device?

Reply Score: 3

RE: "Always On" = Genius
by ddc_ on Mon 6th Jan 2014 01:02 in reply to ""Always On" = Genius"
ddc_ Member since:
2006-12-05

From the article:
"We called the device hiptop [snip]. It was the first always-on, internet-connected smartphone.

Which means that other smart phones already existed that could connect to the Internet, but due to the noted condition that this device defaulted to "always-on," the author and his fellow ex-Apple buddies were geniuses.
"

Pre-existing smartphones - Nokia 9xxx series and Ericsson R380 - were basicly PIM-enabled phones (R380 was even unability to install 3rd-party software). First smartphones released after EPOC32 was renamed to Symbian - Nokia 7650, 9210i and SonyEricsson P800 - were released simultaneously with Hiptop and didn't make much use of network connectivity either, albeit 9110 and P800 included web browsers. They didn't even provide network synchronization options AFAIR. Hiptop (as I gather) was oriented towards mobile networking and internet access from the very beginning, which actually makes it noteworthy.

Edited 2014-01-06 01:06 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: "Always On" = Genius
by chandler on Mon 6th Jan 2014 03:18 in reply to "RE: "Always On" = Genius"
chandler Member since:
2006-08-29

The way I remember it, the Hiptop hit the market about the same time as the first wave of Windows Mobile smartphones, the Handspring Treo, and the first BlackBerry phones. What was particularly unique about that first Hiptop that makes it especially "always-on, internet-connected"?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: "Always On" = Genius
by henderson101 on Mon 6th Jan 2014 12:35 in reply to ""Always On" = Genius"
henderson101 Member since:
2006-05-30

Why do Apple people (and ex-Apple people) always have to rely on adding trivial/arbitrary conditions to argue the distinctiveness of a device?


Danger were made up with more than just ex-Apple employees. A number of the engineers from Be Inc ended up there (Ficus Kirkpatrick, for example, and Baron Arnold also) and Danger was the genesis from which Android was born... Andy Rubin FFS! If you don't want to open your eyes an see past your Apple hate, not my problem. But at least see the bigger picture.

Reply Parent Score: 3