Why Pay Phones and 11 Other Old Tech Still Exist

Date: 2020-01-20 17:00:15


You’re walking down the street when you suddenly remember you need to call your bank. Oh no, your phone battery’s at 1%! You look around and here it is: a pay phone booth! And even better, there’s a phone book inside with the number you need.

If you were born in the 2000s, you probably haven’t even heard of a fax machine. Photo labs have gone, but not completely – and they still offer their services to those interested. Come to think of it, though, how many other seemingly obsolete things are still out there? And why?

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Fax machines 0:25
Photo labs 1:09
Encyclopedias 1:43
Physical books and bookstores 2:12
VHS tapes 3:00
Photo albums 3:55
Old cell phones 4:32
Pay phones 5:11
Pagers 5:46
Copper pennies 6:34
Vinyl records 7:01
Landlines 7:29

#oldtechnology #obsoletethings #brightside

-To use a fax machine, you need a printed copy of your document and the recipient has to own another such machine too. Bulky and pretty unreliable, fax machines became a thing of the past in the late 90s.
-Back in the second half of the 20th century, developing films with your vacation photos was all the rage. You had only 24 or 36 photos you could take before your film ended, so you took them carefully and then went to a photo lab to see what you had.
-You can still see paper encyclopedias on the shelves of bookstores — and many people, surprisingly, still use them.
-A bookshop has become not just a joint where you can buy a new novel by your favorite author, but a place to sit back, have a cup of tea or coffee, and relax in a comfortable chair, reading right there.
-Surprisingly, though they’re gone from households, there are still VHS tapes that are incredibly rare and valuable even today. For example, there’s a Star Wars sealed box tape for sale on eBay that costs $3,500.
-Today, with Instagram and digital pictures all around, a photo album seems obsolete, but almost any photographer you ask will offer you to make a photo album of your own.
-Unlike smartphones and tablets, these simple devices are very hard to track, so if you’re worried about being watched, an old cell phone is a really good choice.
-In some distant areas of the world, you’d be stranded without any connection if not for pay phones that are still installed in many countries.
-Pagers were extremely popular at some point in the 90s, but for obvious reasons they soon became outdated and replaced by more versatile mobile phones. However, paramedics and emergency care workers still use them.
-By and large, pennies are next to worthless, but they’re still being widely circulated. The cost of producing a penny is more than it’s actually worth: 1.7 cents for a 1 penny coin.
-Warm quality of sound they give and the feeling of authenticity when listening to the great bands of the 20th century makes lots of audiophiles around the world collect vinyl records and keep them as the treasure they certainly are.
-Many businesses still cling to landlines, and in some countries banks won’t even give you a loan if you don’t own a landline.

Music by Epidemic Sound

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