Everyone knows what a selfie stick is. The selfie stick is a small, articulated monopod with a clever bit of plastic attached that can reach where human arms can’t, would catch on. Do you have any idea when the first selfie stick was invented? In fact, the selfie stick was invented before selfies themselves even existed. Actually it was invented twice officially….
Although you might think the selfie stick has been around for only a couple of years, an early selfie stick, perhaps the first, was invented in the 1980s by Hiroshi Ueda. Hiroshi Ueda, a photographer who worked as an engineer for camera company Minolta, came up with the idea after struggling to get pictures of himself and his wife together while they were in Europe. He called it “telescopic extender stick” so he could take shots of himself and his family using his film camera.
A telescopic extender for supporting a compact camera includes a head member to be attached to the camera, a grip to be held and a telescopic rod member connecting the head member to the grip. A screw member is supported by the head member in a manner that the screw member is rotatable about the axis perpendicular to an extending and collapsing direction of the telescopic rod. The grip can accommodate there in the telescopic rod when the telescopic rod is completely collapsed. The extender was patented in 1983 but it didn’t become a commercial success, as it was thought to be an “unnecessary” invention.
The same idea has been reinvented multiple times with the introduction of the digital camera, the smartphone camera, Bluetooth technologies, and then online photo sharing services. Modern versions of the extender stick allow a smartphone to be held aloft and use a remote trigger to take the photograph or video.
Thirty years later selfie sticks are now hugely popular, Canadian toy and gadget inventor Wayne Fromm takes the credit for this. He developed the Quik Pod, a hand-held extendable selfie stick in the early 2000s. He was unaware of Ueda’s earlier design, though he too came up with the idea during a European holiday.
The main difference between Ueda’s extendable stick and its modern-day counterpart is down to the state of the technology available at the time. Unlike today’s smartphones, film cameras had no way of showing selfie shooters like Ueda what kind of picture he was taking, so to overcome the issue, one of the designs included a camera with a small mirror on the front, close to the lens. Another factor is the portability of mobile phone cameras – traditional cameras were simply too heavy to put on the end of a long pole.
Aimed at the adventurous travellers, Fromm’s product is impervious to sand and water and has all sorts of extras, like quick-release heads – to avoid the indignity of answering calls with the selfie stick still attached. While consumers can now choose from a wide variety of selfie sticks, the inventor says his Quick Pod comes with unique features that the competitors don’t have, including a quick release, built in mirror, and high-quality materials.
Besides popularity, selfie sticks continue to have their critics. They say selfie sticks are obnoxious and potentially dangerous. Sensing a new market, several companies have launched devices designed to streamline the selfie-taking experience. The selfie stick (produced by multiple brands), which enables users to position their smartphone beyond arms’ reach to get better photo angles.
Long before digital cameras even existed, the selfie stick was kicking around. This figure shows 90-year-old photo of a couple seemingly taken from a camera mounted on the end of a stick. . Arnold Hogg is the first person in recorded history to make use of what we now call a selfie stick. In short, no one “invented” the selfie stick. It rose out of the primordial ooze, like our slithering forebears, in response to an unambiguous and universal need for it.
Selfie stick is so brilliant that its designer is totally unimportant. It solves a complex problem, a problem that plenty of major technology companies have failed at solving, with the dumbest and most logical solution out there….