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A number of recent studies of mobile wireless communication devices focus on use values, social implications, changing norms and ethics, conversation strategies and culture-dependent domestication. De Vries proposes to venture into a more historical and comparative direction to shed light on our preoccupation with them in the first place. He constructs an expanded archaeological view of the development, marketing, and reception of communication technologies over the past 200 years, providing a comprehensive account of how persistent paradoxical desires for sublime communication have come to give mobile wireless media such a prominent position. Our expectations and uses of them are surprisingly similar to those of older media: consequently, they reconfirm the idea that actually living in an 'anyone, anything, anytime, anywhere' world is both a blessing and a curse, and that the desire for sublime communication is a tragic yet highly powerful regulative principle in our media evolution.