First Portable Computer: Weighed 55 Pounds And Cost More Than A Car

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    IBM 5100

    I am sure most of you, just like me too, want to get their hands on the lightest laptops possible today. We are all looking for portability.

    So,what did the first commercially available portable computer have going for it? Well, it was super light at a whopping 55 pounds. It also cost $19,975, more than some cars do these days.

    Have a look:

    IBM 5100

    Yep, that’s a “laptop”. Kind of. Here’s the full details on the IBM Portable PC, model number 5100:

    First introduced: September, 1975
    CPU: IBM proprietary, 1.9MHz
    RAM: 16K, 64K max
    Display: 5? monochrome monitor 64 X 16 text
    Storage: Internal 200K tape (DC300)
    Ports: tape / printer I/O port
    OS: APL and/or BASIC

    When you check out the Wikipedia page for the IBM 5100, here’s what it says:

    A single integrated unit provided the keyboard, five-inch CRT display, tape drive, processor, several hundred kilobytes of read only memory containing system software, and up to 64 KB of random access memory. It was the size of a small suitcase, weighed about 55 lb (25 kg), and could be transported in an optional carrying case, hence the “portable” designation.

    So it was the size of a small suitcase? Yeah, how’s that for portable? If you ever find yourself complaining about how clunky and big your gadgets are, remember this guy lugging around the $20k “ultra portable” IBM 5100:

    IBM 5100