History of Mobile Phone

Mobile phones have been deemed as the modern invention but their origin has been traced back to the invention of the telephone by Graham Bell in 1876. The mobile phone is a long-range, portable electronic device used for mobile communication, innovation have made it possible for the device to support various services such as voice calls, SMS, email, packet switching for internet access, MMS for sending and receiving videos and photographs. For these reasons the device currently is the essential commodity to human race(Lifestyle, 2009).

In the 1940s, the introduction of hexagonal cells that was further developed through 1960s by Bell Labs is the basis of mobile phones. It was in 1945 that the 0 generation mobile telephone came into existence but it was not classified as the mobile phone because it didn’t support the automatic change of channel frequencies. Cooper, a Motorola General Manager in 1973 came up with the first practical mobile phone used outside vehicle settings though it was a bit heavy portable handset(Farley, 2007).

It was in the early to mid 1980s that the first generation mobile phone came into existence. The system employed analogue circuit switch technology worked mainly between 800 and 900 MHz Frequency bands as well as with Frequency Division Multiple Access. It was characterized by low traffic capacity, unreliability, poor security and voice quality. It is worth noting that this mobile phones generation only supported voice calls and heavily depended on network of distributed transceivers for communication(Al Sacco, 2007).

The second generation basically using Global System for Mobile Communications technology emerged in the 1990s, and includes 2G, 2.5G and 2.75G. This generation purely used digital technology as opposed to those in the first generation. The need to handle a large number of calls especially in the dense populated regions as well as avoiding the risk of interference and dropped calls at handoff necessitated the development of this second generation mobile phones(Admin, 2009). Due to the fact that the frequencies overlapped with those of the 1G, the later were quickly closed down to pave way for this new generation. This generation is characterized by speed and quietness.


It is worth noting that, new technology ensured that the phones were smaller and convenient to carry, long live batteries and small in size. This generation enabled SMS; it also introduced the ability to access media content via mobile phones through the introduction of downloadable ringtones, internet services, advertising as well as making payments via mobile phone were possible thanks to this second generation. All these features made these mobiles very popular, but the prices were made affordable thanks to stiff competition from the various manufactures(Farley, 2007).

The third generation digital cell phones are what majority of people are currently using and came into being immediately after the excitement brought by the 2G phones. High demand for data services growth as well as speed to acquire these data necessitated 3G development. This generation differs from 2G is that it uses packet-switching rather than circuit-switching for data transmission and focuses more on requirement than technology(Al Sacco, 2007). In addition to services offered by the two previous mobile generations, the 3G handsets provide consumers with TV streaming, multimedia, Web browsing, paging, navigational maps, radio streaming, e-mail as well as video conferencing. The generation relies on WCDMA which is a superior transmission technology.

The limitations of 3G and existence of devices such as dongles, compact wireless routers, Wi-Fi, Nook and Barnes, Amazon Kindle, iPad propelled movement towards the 4D. In 2009, it became apparent that 3G will be overwhelmed by the growth of bandwidth-intensive applications such as streaming media, this generation uses all-IP network(Admin, 2009).

In conclusion, it is worth to note that innovation is a continuous process and cannot be predicted, more thus can be expected in mobile phone industry.