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Throwback Thursday: Motorola DynaTAC, ‘The Zack Morris Phone’

February 24th, 2011 at 5:44 PM

Quick Preppy, put that phone down… you don’t want Belding to catch you! For this week’s installation of Throwback Thursday, we’re going to venture all the way back to 1992. Those were the days, weren’t they? Zack, Screech, AC and the gang still roamed the halls of Bayside High, MC Hammer wasn’t in bankruptcy, and the Motorola DynaTAC was hot technology.

The DynaTAC series was the first line of commercially produced cellular handsets by U.S. electronics manufacturer Motorola. First introduced in 1983, the DynaTAC was a vast improvement over the previous iteration of mobile telephones, lovingly referred to as “bag phones.” The name stood for Dynamic Adaptive Total Area Coverage and the devices originally ran on AMPS cellular networks. Dr. Martin Cooper, father of the modern cell phone, worked for Motorola in the early 1980’s and played a critical roll in the DynaTAC’s creation. The familiar form of the model survived from the early 80’s all the way through 1994; before it was shelved for a more svelte design. Since its demise, the phone has become a symbol of everyone’s favorite decade (the 1980’s, duh) and — thanks to one of our favorite cameos on Saved by the Bell — and adjetive. Telling someone they have a Zack Morris Phone usually refers to a bulky, out-dated, and overweight cell phone that is in need of replacement.

We’ll admit, we’re about a half a decade too young to have owned a DynaTAC, but that doesn’t mean it can’t hold a special place in our hearts, right? Did you know anyone who actually owned a Zack Morris Phone?

BGR’s Throwback Thursday is a weekly series covering our (and your) favorite gadgets, games, and software of yesterday and yesteryear.

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