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August 29, 2021

⚡ Welcome again to The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. Dishing up the 157th edition, right here...

🎮 Paula Beaton taking the reigns from here on out, giving Tristan Rayner more time to play on his new PS5. Still can't wait to get my hands on one!

🔥 All the hottest stories for you, coming up.

Popular news this week
Netflix icon on the homescreen of the HTC 10.
Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 unfolded with home screen
Eric Zeman / Android Authority


Weekly Wonder
IBM Simon
The IBM Simon was the first smartphone ever. It even had a touch screen!

Our own Robert Triggs’ piece about how Android came to be Android got us thinking about the words we use for the tech we all rely on — and we wondered: When did we first start using the word “smartphone”? 

  • Even though most of us didn’t use or hear the word “smartphone” until Apple launched the first-gen iPhone in 2007, the first true smartphone landed 15 years earlier, back in 1992 — the year AOL went public (CNBC).
  • IBM’s Simon Personal Communicator, or “Simon”, a hybrid cell phone and PDA was a not-so-portable brick costing $899 (around $1,435 today, for which you could — almost — bag a new Galaxy Z Fold 3) (Business Insider).
  • With Simon’s 4.5 x 1.4-inch monochrome LCD touchscreen and stylus, you could send emails and faxes, or page someone with a number code or text message on your handy porta-brick. Amazing. (r/90s)
Tech Calendar
  • September 8: Lenovo Tech World 2021
  • September 13: Android 12?
  • September 15: Xiaomi Launch Event @ 5AM PT/8AM ET/1PM BST (possibly Xiaomi Mi 12, Mi 11T, Mi Pad 5, Mi Note 11)
  • Also in September: As many as three Apple events? (iPhone 13, Watch Series 7, MacBooks, AirPods 3, more)

Tech Tweet of the Week

First: @Gallowboob is back, this time coining the term “brailing”. Turns out there’s a railing on a gazebo in Naples, Italy with braille describing the view for blind people. Wonder what it says?

Second: What’s new? Oh, not much, just this rat playing a harmonica. Not sure why, but it’ll definitely brighten your day.

— Living Morganism (@ok_girlfriend) — August 27, 2021


Have a great week!

Paula Beaton, Copy Editor

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