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    But could even a 1980s cell phone have been made in 1946? That’s decades before ICs. A year before the transistor even. Maybe the trunk sized device they’re talking about? Not sure if that qualifies as what most people consider “cellphone” or if it would have been so widely accessible to say “we” could have one.

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      They may have started out even more primitively than they did in the 80’s but they would have evolved fast. It’s barely been 40 years since they hit the market and they’ve evolved into completely different beasts already so I’d expect that by the 80’s they’d have done so too.

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        I think at best we could have progressed into decent phones 5 or 10 years earlier (So late 80s maybe instead of 1995?), I doubt it would have been a constant progression though, I don’t think we would be using an equivalent of 2022-2027 phones right now.

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          Though we seemed to get good phones and then just shoot straight past them.

          Was nice having a battery life measured in days if not weeks rather than hours.

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            I wonder how well this comment will age, re:2027 phones ?

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              “My holographic VR phone’s battery lasts just 20 minutes when I’m away from microwave power!” :(

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        Reason is against regulation (and public governance in general), so their anti-FCC bias in this article is pretty obvious. I’m not convinced deregulation would have resulted in cell phones any sooner, especially not in the 1950s. The technology wasn’t ready for massive adoption, and lack of regulation would make it harder to invest in cellular technology, because of the uncertainty around the future availability of the frequencies required for each type of technology.

        Did AT&T, Motorola, and the FCC screw up? Yeah. Would they have not screwed it up worse without regulation? I don’t think that follows.