Wearable Tech in 1922 Was a Radio Inside Your Top Hat

By Matt Novak on at

Many people are convinced that wearable tech will revolutionise in the coming decades our relationship with technology. But we've been waiting on this revolution in some form or another for a century. Case in point: this kid who had it all figured out in 1922 when he invented a radio that fit inside his top hat.

The early 1920s were an exciting, experimental time for radio. Some people didn't even call it radio yet, since the term wireless telephone was still quite popular. But this 18-year-old inventor was way ahead of his time when it came to how radio could be implemented in wearable tech.

The circular aerial he's holding fit neatly inside the ring of the hat, and his headphones seem to be the only thing that would give passers-by any clue that he wasn't tuned in to the world around him.

Wearable Tech In 1922 Was a Radio Inside Your Top Hat

Too bad in-ear headphones were still about four years away, otherwise we'd really be mistaking him for a time-traveler. Below, the headphones from 1926 that I'd recommend bringing with you if you want to travel back in time and blow this guy's mind.

Wearable Tech In 1922 Was a Radio Inside Your Top Hat

Images: Getty images of the top hat radio; May 1926 issue of Science and Invention