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What Did Your Desk Look Like in the 90s?

What Did Your Desk Look Like in the 90s?

Merely a decade or so ago, the world was pretty different to the one we inhabit today. And no, we’re not talking dinosaurs and caveman, we’re talking about the world of tech.

Bulky, wired, grey and beige boxes were considered the height of technology, with classrooms, offices and homes looking completely different to what we have today. Here’s how your desk may have looked in the 90s:

Desktop computers: If you were lucky enough to own a desktop computer, you’d have to be strong enough to lift it. Large towers and huge monitors made for a rather heavy setup, which is why you’d never see the computer move from room to room – once it’s assembled, it’s staying there to gather dust until it stops working.

Desktop Computer

Floppy disks: No CDs or USBs here, just the good old floppy disk. These little squares were your lifeline for setting up computer programs, storing and transferring data and held your dream collection of computer games. Stored in a handy shoebox and instantly fixed with a good blow of air into the disk drive to clear out the dust, these little beauties seemed to last forever. Just don’t expect to store much more than 1 MB of data on it!

Floppy Disk

Speakers: No desktop setup would be complete without some fancy speakers, just make sure you’ve got room next to that huge monitor!


Webcams: First rolled out in the late 90s, the webcam was a novel form of online communication. Slow internet speeds and low-quality video led to webcam interactions being more comparable to a 1920s motion picture rather than the video chats we’re used to today, but were a novelty enjoyed by MSN users worldwide (the 90s version of Facebook Messenger). Most webcams didn’t incorporate microphones, so you’d have to add one to your desktop collection.


Microphones: Just like the microphones you see supermarket staff use to make store announcements, the 90s desktop microphone was not a thing of beauty but fun none-the-less. For those lucky enough to afford it, you may have had your very own headset to add those call centre vibes to your outfit. The perfect accompaniment to your fuzzy webcam video, the microphone provided mostly clear audio when needed most – especially after MSN Messenger introduced voice clips to chats.


Wheelie furniture: No desktop computer setup was complete without its own wheelie desk and chair combination. With just enough space to fit your massive monitor, computer tower, speakers, keyboard, mouse, microphone, webcam and printer (if you were very lucky!) the wheelie desk just about managed to hold it all together without collapsing under the horrific weight of it all. Bundle together the mass of wires, sit back on your spinning desk chair and away you go.

Did we miss anything? What was your favourite piece of tech from the 1990s? Let us know in the comments below!