Funny how I got used to that without really thinking about it. Probably because it happened gradually in terms of quality. Around the millenium they could zoom, but the image quality was... let's call it Usable For Some Values Of Use. (And this Nikon 950 and its 2MP images were real dang good for the time.)
Our friend Bert made me think about it when he mentioned how today's good zooms were explained one day his compact camera broke, and he saw how much smaller the sensor was than the lens. The sensors in most compact cameras are around the size of a pinky nail!
In other words, a compact camera with built-in zoom only came around when they became capable of making tiny sensor in good quality. And they became really good cameras when those sensors became really good, let's call it the mid-noughties.
hand-held at night, because it has a much larger sensor than any pocketcamera.
In fact I'm wondering when anybody will really challenge the RX100. It's still standing in a class of its own after a year.