There have been some truly bizarre creations in the world of tech, along with some fantastic machines that were brilliant in their time. Way before the days of smartphones and tablets we had enormous, clunking personal computers and myriad tiny little electronic gadgets, the thought of which brings back a warm, nostalgic feeling.
While you may be lucky enough to chance upon some of this stuff on the shelves of a charity store its more likely that you’ll have to shell out fair few quid on ebay to get your hands on any of these.
Anyone who was at school in the mid-to-late nineties will remember these things, annoying teachers as they interrupted lessons with their incessant chirping. Tabloids were full of apocryphal stories about pupil’s skipping school to look after these strange little electronic pets, but we were more concerned that they’d die if the teacher confiscated them.
Average ebay price: £13
Psion Series 3
The must-have gadget for any budding yuppie in the early nineties, the Psion Series 3 brought the PDA into mainstream use. A portable way of organising your calendar, taking notes and even playing games, Psion’s creation was like a smartphone way before its time.
Average ebay price: £40
Long before smartphones came along, Polaroid cameras were the only option for seeing exactly what you had snapped straight after taking it. The warm, rich tones of vintage photos have become hugely popular in the last few years, with countless apps mimicking the effects, and the square format of Polaroid images has made a comeback with Instagram.
Average ebay price: £40
The classic format for the compilation tapes that were so often swapped between friends in the days before Spotify playlists, the C90 was a cheap and brilliant way of playing music. This type of cassette was also ideal for using with a Walkman, carrying your favourite tunes with you wherever you went.
Average ebay price: £2
The Commodore 64 was the first home gaming experience for those who came of age just before consoles became widespread, and it sold by the million. While sometimes it used big, old floppy disks, you could also load games from cassette, although it took nearly a whole afternoon to do so.
Average ebay price: £50
One of the handsets that brought mobile phones to the masses, the Nokia 5110 was released way back in 1998. Although bulky by today’s standards, it featured a compact design for its time and was one of the first handsets to feature the classic mobile game Snake.
Average ebay price: £20