As we know in today’s world laptops are taking over especially with businessmen. We can do almost anything on today’s laptop and the super advanced technology; it makes you think what the first ever laptop was like? I am going to tell you…
The first ever laptop computer was the EPSON HX-20 which was announced in 1981 but wasn’t put on the market until two years later in 1983. It was generally known as the first ever handheld portable computer system. The best way to describe the EPSON HX-20 is that it was the size of an a4 piece of paper with a screen smaller than most mobile phone screens in today’s world, which allowed around 4 lines of 3-6 words per line. It had the feature of rechargeable batteries and a full keyboard (maybe not as many buttons as we have today). So it has all the features of a desktop but you can take it wherever you want with you. Naturally it didn’t have any WiFi or internet connections as the internet wasn’t a mainstream thing back then.
Now don’t expect any major super-fast specifications as this was built in the 80s where a 0.5 MHz processor was renowned as “super quick”. The HC-20 weighed roughly 4lbs which compared to the laptops we have today is like an elephant. It ran off two Hitachi 6301 CPUs which ran at 0.6 MHz!! Wait it gets worse… It had installed into it 16KB of RAM, you heard it 16KB and it could run upto a maximum of 32KB. In laptops in the modern world they have upto 1TB of storage memory in the Hard Drive, back then the HC-20 had a cassette tape which stored memory just like the tapes we used to have in our cars and radios. We’re not finished there though, it also had installed a built in printer. This was like no printer we have today it was more like a receipt printer like you see on tills in shops or when you get a bus ticket.
As you can see the specifications compared to today’s are very antique and very very slow but back then it was like a brand new apple mac. To prove that, the EPSON HX-20 was priced at a hefty $795 and don’t forget this was back in 1983 where this amount of money meant a whole lot more than it does today. So next time you are looking to buy a laptop and you are worrying about the price for the performance, just remember the first ever laptop.