On Jan. 3, 1996, Motorola introduced the StarTAC, which was made of black plastic (this colorful version came a couple years later). It was the world's first flip phone and it cost $1,000.
The StarTAC changed everything. It was light. It was ultraportable.
Motorola even called the StarTAC a "wearable" phone. "It can be worn fashionably as an accessory," the press release said.
This Rainbow version differs from the original, 1996 model, but the nuts and bolts are about the same.
Including the small screen and the pull-out antenna.
Yep, this is what phone chargers used to look like, and each brand more often than not used a proprietary connector.
The StarTAC held 100 phone numbers and had several large buttons on the keypad and spines.
The StarTAC was one of the first phones to use a vibration motor so you could silently accept calls.
Pull-out antennas were common in the mid- to late 1990s, and even persisted into the early 2000s.
Motorola was exceedingly proud of the StarTAC's height. When closed, it measured 8cm (3.1 inches) from the bottom to the top, not including the pushed-in antenna. It's closer to 4 inches when you include that essential part.
This rainbow version keeps its battery on the top like a camel's hump.
This slider pops out the SIM card...
...which is about the same size as a credit card.
The SIM card is inactive, so the phone doesn't work without it, but you can see the screen quality.
One of these buttons helped operate the phone one-handed.
The keypad has physical buttons that bounce back after your press them.
A closer look at that stubby antenna.