The World’s First Mobile Phone Shown on 1922 Vintage Film

A couple of years ago, British Pathé uncovered some striking footage from 1922 showing two women experimenting with the first mobile phone. A spokesman for the archive said: ”It’s amazing that nearly 90 years ago mobile phone technology and music … was not only being thought of but being trialled.” “The phone even has a lid which makes it the first flip-phone we are aware of, although it is probably not going to win any design awards.” He added, ”We would be delighted to hear from anyone who can tell us anything about the film, from where it is shot to who the women might be or even about the phone itself.”

For another gem from the British Pathé archive, don’t miss The King’s Speech (1938), which gives you a glimpse of King George VI making a speech to open an exhibition in Scotland — the same king that became the subject of the 2010 Academy Award-winning film.

H/T @MatthiasRascher



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  1. Barb Drummond says . . . | December 2, 2011 / 9:55 am

    I want one! no searching for a signal and they got through straight away – no answerphones. And that umbrella is wonderful.

  2. walt waldoon says . . . | December 2, 2011 / 8:45 pm

    I think any New Yorker would recognize the street(looks like the upper west side) and, especially, the fire hydrant as instant giveaways that the film was shot in New York City — a highly likely candidate regardless.

  3. Jeanette Bennett says . . . | January 31, 2012 / 8:49 am

    As remarkable as this is, I was shocked to find out the first wireless telephone was invented in 1880 by none other than Alexander Graham Bell! He called it the photophone because it used light instead of wires. Unfortunately it wouldn’t fit in a pocket. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photophone

  4. Naven kumar nx says . . . | March 10, 2012 / 3:27 am

    It’s amazing t see these views

  5. tyson raymond says . . . | March 28, 2012 / 4:52 am

    we did not enjoy this website because it dosent show the picture.dick

  6. Ray Roman says . . . | August 16, 2012 / 7:55 pm

    This came up a few years ago, there was a lady who looked like she was holding a cell phone to her ear in a Chaplin film I think it was. Anybody know what film I’m talking about?

  7. Jed says . . . | August 23, 2012 / 6:43 am

    @Jeanette

    You sure about that?
    Recall reading once that AGB actually copied work done by someone else.
    He was 1st to patent, but didn’t actually invent fix-line telephone IIRC.
    Given that, I’m not so sure he devised wireless either.

  8. Jed says . . . | August 23, 2012 / 6:48 am

    @Ray_Roman

    I recall that, but IIRC it was “speculation” about some sort of time traveling occurring, as the phone was far too compact for anything at the time.

  9. rana taaha says . . . | December 4, 2012 / 10:15 am

    vey nice….

  10. Ashi says . . . | July 15, 2013 / 3:29 am

    Very likely the video is not authentic. Some visuals that show the flaw of being made recently; It moves faster than a 1922 film, check out the girl’s facial movements, they are quicker than some in late 1920s. Also the girl who receives the call, the boy cut, girls did not crop their hair that close and did not wear a round neck tshirt. Don’t believe it myself at least.

  11. Wendy says . . . | July 15, 2013 / 9:56 am
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