Three memorable outdoor gadgets that the world first saw via a James Bond film

There’s a saying that goes something like, “It’s not the gadgets that make the man but the man who makes the gadgets.” Q is quite possibly one of the best engineers on screen as he was able to create devices for Bond that were later on developed by real-world gadget makers. Spectre, the latest installment in the highly-successful Bond franchise will come out on November 6 and what better way to commemorate the film than predict the high-tech outdoor gadgets of the future by taking a trip down memory lane? Here are 3 high-tech devices that the public first saw on Bond.

image credit: comingsoon.net

GPS

GPS may be something common now but back in 1964, it was quite possibly the most advanced gadget ever. People watching Goldfinger and looked on in awe when they saw Bond tracking down someone on his Aston Martin DB5 using some sort of a map that moves. The car, which was more popularly known as “James Bond’s Car,” was the first ever vehicle in the Bond series that showed the world a glimpse of what cars today would go on to feature. For the record, GPS’ first public appearance was in 1978.

Q never explained on the set as to how the “tracking beacon” works but James Bond used it just like how normal people today track the nearest McDonald’s. Using the tracker, James Bond pinpointed Auric Goldfinger and by using a series of techniques used by experts of Satellite Navigation. Whether it used an actual satellite dish or direct wireless communication links, the film surely did give real engineers inspiration to create the modern day, portable GPS.

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Speaking of The Aston Martin DB5 that was used in the film, affulent fans of the James Bond franchise can now purchase it via car dealers based in the UK. While it isn’t clear whether or not a replica of the tracking beacon is included in the Aston Martin DB5s being sold by authorized dealers of Bond cars, what’s sure is that with it, men can look as stylish and sharp as Britain’s most dangerous and revered spy.


Underwater Camera

Ah, who can forget that scene back in 1965 when Bond used a camera while underwater in Thunderball? It was a worldwide phenomenon, and clearly something that was picked up by the predecessors of the now-popular GoPro.

In the film, Bond used an underwater camera named as the “Calypso-Nikkor” as part of his espionage mission against SPECTRE (may or may not be related to the upcoming bond film). It was designed by a Belgian engineer named Jean De Wouters, whose apt last name was probably what inspired him to design the underwater camera for the film in the first place. De Wouters worked for camera giant Nikon, which is one of the most popular brands for Digital DSLR cameras.

Car Phone

Ah, the car phone. Fans saw it first on From Russia with Love in 1963 whenever Bond tried to reach his teammates at the M16. While a car that has a landline seems funny now, know that it was quite an impressive device back in the 60s that wowed even the most brilliant of engineers watching the film.

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Perhaps the franchise’s writer, the amazing Ian Fleming, predicted that wireless phones will become a thing in the future. After all, it is quite useful even for non-work reasons, as it is human nature to keep in touch with our loved ones. While a landline handle didn’t become the next big thing, at least it gave engineers an idea on how people can communicate with each other even if they’re outside of home.

Now, the world is waiting as to what Spectre will be showcasing on its launch date. Will we perhaps see a device that can produce holographic images of people communicating with each other? After all, it is next in line after touch screen devices according to tech experts. That, or perhaps we’ll see Daniel Craig drive a flying car while chasing some villain. Flying cars, after all, were first popularized on Back to the Future and the film predicts that we would have them by 2015. Well, we still don’t have flying cars so maybe Spectre can use its magic and inspire engineers once more.

Are you a huge fan of the James Bond franchise? Do you have any idea what fans can expect to see on the next Bond film? Well, whether or not you’re right about your speculation, we will definitely get to see cool new things even if they’re not devices that show holographic images of people we’re talking to or a flying car. Maybe they will even be the next big thing in outdoor equipment! It won’t be a high tech two-way radio that’s for sure, but the possibilities of speculating about the next Bond gadget is endless!