The office of the past, present and future – Part II

Last updated: 16 February 2019

Earlier this month, we talked about the past and present of the office desktop and how it may develop in the future. Today, we’re pleased to unveil the results of our latest project, which uses sliding images to illustrate the stark difference between the desk of today and that of yesteryear.

set 1 oldset 1 modern

Despite manufacturers’ best efforts to minimize moving parts, hardware will always have a limited shelf life. Think, for example, that we used to have a radio, telephone, answerphone, calculator, computer and printer the size of a baby elephant to hand at all times in the office of yesteryear.

set 2 oldset 2 modern

Today, Spotify replaces the radio and CD player, Voice over IP (VoIP) software like Skype replaces the deskphone, synced word processor applications like Evernote replace the notepad, contactless credit cards and NFC connected phones replace the need for cash, and pretty much everything else is available at the touch of a button inside our laptops, tablets and smartphones.

set 3 oldset 3 modern

Sliding images like this provide a stark reminder of just how much our working environments have changed and, in tandem, security methods need to keep up. Cast your mind back a few years (or decades) and let us know… which digital innovations can you name that have now replaced an office item of the past?

Do you have a quirky desktop image that you’d like to share? Get involved on Twitter using the @Gemalto handle and the hashtag #MyDeskNow for the chance to win a prize…

3 thoughts on “The office of the past, present and future – Part II

  1. A nice comparison Tim. One thing is bugging me though… Why does that Commodore PET have a mouse sitting next to it? – they were a text based machine. I cannot recall ever seeing an application on one that used a mouse (though I guess some may have existed)…. Curious.

    1. Well spotted Mick! Although we tried to make it as authentic as possible the person managing the shoot was in his 20s and missed this detail. We’ll hire someone with more experience next time.

  2. Hi Tim,

    Nice job giving us a then and now comparison. I love the slider view. I see that the table was not changed to a big boxy desk with heavy drawers and not to mention that the filing cabinet never goes out of style. How about using the NEAT scanner and removing the filing cabinet. 🙂


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