Celebrating 10 Years of Smartphone Communities

Ten years ago today, 9/9/99, our fearless leader Marcus Adolfsson launched VisorCentral.com - a community providing news, reviews and forums focused on a single product: the Handspring Visor.  The Visor, you may recall, was the PDA that was destined to start the smartphone revolution with the VisorPhone.

Ten years later, we have grown from that single small site to a network of seven different communities, each focused on a core brand of smartphone and dedicated to providing everything a user could need or want to know about their smartphone - from news to chat, reviews to ringtones, podcasts to apps, accessories to wallpapers. The Smartphone Experts Network has over 1.8 million members in our forums; on any given day there are thousands of users logged in: finding help, talking about the latest news, reviewing products, and more. We still have plenty of active members that signed up literally within days of our 9/9/99 launch. Millions of visitors every month come to us to find out the latest information for their smartphone.

On our blogs, we have moved from an average of a single post a day on a single site to around thirty per day across our network. In our accessory stores, we provide a wide variety of accessories for every major smartphone platform and were named the fastest growing retailer of 2007 by Inc500. Our stores also provide sales and support for a large and growing network of affiliate sites.

Back in 1999, it wasn't at all clear that a 'Blog' (the term still needed quotes back then) and community could be formed around a single device and thrive - VisorCentral was one of the first to do it and looking at the landscape of the technical blogosphere today, the model has worked. Since then we've kept the same goal: give users a place to learn about their specific smartphone and use it better. We couldn't have done it without an incredibly great team of editors and writers, but most of all we couldn't have done it without you.

So we just wanted to say thanks to our users and readers - thanks for sticking with us on what started as a strange experiment in web communities, thanks for being so passionate, engaged, and intelligent about your phones. We're grateful for the knowledge, the discussions, and the friends we've gained over the past ten years and look forward to even more in the future.

To celebrate our ten year anniversary, each of our sites is giving away ten $50 gift certificates to its respective accessory store. To enter, simply make a post in this forum thread (not here on this post) sharing how this site has helped you better use your smartphone before midnight Pacific this Friday.

The Smartphone Experts Team

Dieter Bohn

Dieter Bohn is former editor-in-chief of Smartphone Experts, writing across iMore, Windows Phone Central, Android Central, and more. You can find him on Twitter (and everywhere else) @backlon.

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Reader comments

Celebrating 10 Years of Smartphone Communities

4 Comments

Congratulations, SPE. With all the changes in the last 10 years of mobile, that's a real accomplishment.