The 50 Greatest Gadgets of the Past 50 Years

The Complete List of PC World's 50 Greatest Gadgets

PC World's list of the top 50 tech gadgets of the last half century was assembled after we polled our editors for nominations. We then rated the nominated gadgets for usefulness, design, degree of innovation, influence on subsequent gadgets, and the "cool factor." Here are the results.

  1. Sony Walkman TPS-L2 (1979)
  2. Apple iPod (2001)
  3. (Tie) ReplayTV RTV2001 and TiVo HDR110 (1999)
  4. PalmPilot 1000 (1996)
  5. Sony CDP-101 (1982)
  6. Motorola StarTAC (1996)
  7. Atari Video Computer System (1977)
  8. Polaroid SX-70 Land Camera (1972)
  9. M-Systems DiskOnKey (2000)
  10. Regency TR-1 (1954)
  11. Sony PlayStation 2 (2000)
  12. Motorola Razr V3 (2004)
  13. Motorola PageWriter (1996)
  14. BlackBerry 850 Wireless Handheld (1998)
  15. Phonemate Model 400 (1971)
  16. Texas Instruments Speak & Spell (1978)
  17. Texas Instruments SR-10 (1973)
  18. Diamond Multimedia Rio PMP300 (1998)
  19. Sony Handycam DCR-VX1000 (1995)
  20. Handspring Treo 600 (2003)
  21. Zenith Space Command (1956)
  22. Hamilton Pulsar (1972)
  23. Kodak Instamatic 100 (1963)
  24. MITS Altair 8800 (1975)
  25. Radio Shack TRS-80 Model 100 (1983)
  26. Nintendo Game Boy (1989)
  27. Commodore 64 (1982)
  28. Apple Newton MessagePad (1994)
  29. Sony Betamax (1975)
  30. Sanyo SCP-5300 (2002)
  31. iRobot Roomba Intelligent Floorvac (2002)
  32. Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer (1999)
  33. Franklin Rolodex Electronics REX PC Companion (1997)
  34. Lego Mindstorms Robotics Invention System 1.0 (1998)
  35. Motorola DynaTAC 8000X (1983)
  36. Iomega Zip Drive (1995)
  37. Magnavox Magnavision Model 8000 DiscoVision Videodisc Player (1978)
  38. Milton Bradley Simon (1978)
  39. Play, Inc. Snappy Video Snapshot (1996)
  40. Connectix QuickCam (1994)
  41. BellSouth/IBM Simon Personal Communicator (1993)
  42. Motorola Handie Talkie HT-220 Slimline (1969)
  43. Polaroid Swinger (1965)
  44. Sony Aibo ERS-110 (1999)
  45. Sony Mavica MVC-FD5 (1997)
  46. Learjet Stereo-8 (1965)
  47. Timex/Sinclair 1000 (1982)
  48. Sharp Wizard OZ-7000 (1989)
  49. Jakks Pacific TV Games (2002)
  50. Poqet PC Model PQ-0164 (1990)

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Dan Tynan

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?