AT&T “You Will” Ads from 1993

Sections: Remote control, Security, Smart Home, Streaming, Video

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This retrotastically awesome series of commercials is currently making the rounds in my circle of email friends, so I thought I’d share it here.

As with Arthur C. Clarke‘s brilliantly prescient 2001: A Space Odyssey, the fun here is in exploring the things the commercials got as spectacularly wrong as the things they got eerily right. Like, seriously, what’s a phone booth? And why would I need one when I’ve got FaceTime?

For that matter, how in the heck am I going to get my medical records in my wallet when my doctor is just now (begrudgingly) putting them on a computer?

I also haven’t seen AT&T making headway in the home automation market recently, but products like Control4’s MyHome in combination with a Z-Wave or ZigBee-equipped Yale Lock are way cooler (not to mention more secure) than the simple voice recognition shown here.

Of course, the funniest thing about these commercials, given the abysmal network access I had on my phone last week at CES, is the notion that AT&T would be the ones to reliably provide all of these futuristic innovations. But I’m picking nits. The commercials are still cool.

For a completely different take on past and future technology, check out these kids trying to identify electronic doodads from just a few years before their time:

(By far the best is the kid at the 2:30 mark who seems to have invented scratching on his own. Brilliant!)

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