In social, political and economic practices, technology has been an important component. The capacity of stakeholders to put together diverse variables that facilitate growth is characterized by technology. One of the unique technologies is mobile cell phones, especially because of the high role played by the private sector in the developments that have characterized the improvement of mobile phone technology. The development of cell phone technologies using the blueprint laid out by TP Hughes will be explained in this report. It will illustrate how, through discovery, creation, advancement, transition and growth, competitiveness and stability, technology has went through. Most of these developments have been undertaken by the private sector under patents. However, the discoveries made by the independent researchers have been of great use to the general humanity because they have been adopted on the global scale. One of the key milestones in the development of mobile phone technology was the discovery of smartphones that combine the functions of a cell phone and those of a computer. This essay will explain the stages through which mobile cell phone technology has developed over the years.
Transmission of voice through radio has a long history dating to the discovery of waves. The first devices to be used for wireless communication were not mobile. They were used in stationary locations or in vehicles because of their large sizes. This technology was also considered costly at the time. They required base stations and consumed a lot of power. Due to the high costs of installation, operation and maintenance, these types of phones were only used by large organizations such as fire departments and hospitals (Katz and Satomi 63). The first mobile phones were radio communication devices installed in vehicles. They were widely used by taxis and emergency service vehicles. As the demand of the phones increased, the operators set up base stations shared by separate covering wide areas rather than those that had separate cells transmitting signals between specific units. These developments were not associated with brands. In fact, the harmonization of base stations was largely a move by government institutions and was influenced through public research.
The first company to have interest in mass production of mobile phones was Motorola. Martin Cooper, an employee of Motorola, advanced on the technology that existed at the time to come up with a smaller and truly portable mobile telephone unit. On 3rd April 1973, Motorola set up mass production plants for mobile cell phones that later came to be referred to as Zero generation phones (Katz and Satomi 64).
The development of mobile cell phones combined the technology utilized in handsets that were used by emergency service providers. The early stages of radio engineering took place at the advent of the 20th century. Analog radio communications were widely used in transport systems such as ships and trains. Eric Tigerstedt, a Finnish inventor, was one of the first individuals to come up with a pocket-size phone that had a portable source of power. Companies such as Improved Mobile Telephone Service and Bell System’s Mobile Telephone Service were credited for the creation of the zero generation systems (Katz and Satomi 65).
Phones that used the zero generation systems had most of the characteristics of the contemporary cellular phone. They supported a number of simultaneous functions but were very expensive and out of reach by the majority of the population. However, they formed the foundation of the technology on which the contemporary mobile phones were created. The researchers, especially in the private sector, built on the zero generation phones and their input has seen mobile telephony technology evolve through a number of generations to what is available today.
One of the key figures in the innovation of handheld mobile phones is Martin Cooper. He was an employee of Motorola who made the first call on a handheld mobile phone in 1973. He worked closely with John Mitchell to develop a handset that weighed slightly more than 2 kilograms. Though these initial inventions were patented, they could easily be modified and adopted by other people around the world. Other companies chose to agree to terms of the patent before utilizing them. However, there was no commercial network to help in connectivity until 1979. Japan was the first country to have a wide commercial cellular network coverage in 1979. This development was pioneered by an entity called Nippol Telegraph and Telephone (Zickuhr 4). Companies in different countries made innovations aimed at improving mobile cell phones and networking. Most of the discoveries were similar but uncoordinated. This explains why most of these developments did not attract much attention in regard to copyrights and patent laws. Mobile telephony and networking initially seemed to develop independently. With time, these two were integrated and inventors from both fields started working together. This enhanced broth the capabilities of the new devices that were being invented and their ability to connect through calls, text messages and other features that relied on the internet.
Technology transfer in regard to cellular phones became a reality with the invention of first generation (1G) systems. Many companies started gaining an interest in the commercialization of mobile telephony. During this time, the cellular phones till relied on analog technology. DynaTAC 8000x was the first commercial mobile phone that was availed by Motorola in the market in 1983 at a cost of $4000. The phone offered six hours standby, 30 minutes talk-time and could hold 30 contacts.
The initial adoption and transfer of mobile cell phone technology was not done with the middle-class consumers in mind. This transfer mainly targeted businesses and the financially capable individuals and households. This explains why all attention was given to enhancing the capabilities of the handsets while overlooking the price (Liikanen et al. 1142).
Handset and networking technologies seemed to develop independently. These were integrated at some point, after it had become apparent that manufacture of mobile phones for individual use was a viable venture. After the city-wide cellular phone network in Japan, Nordic Mobile Telephone followed by launching its network across four countries: Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark. The 0G network only served corporates within these regions. At this time, mobile telephone networks were not linked to landlines as is the case today. Therefore, they were exclusively utilized by companies or individuals that were connected to a similar network (Bhalla, and Anand 26). The development of this networking services came along with that of the smartphone. Researchers were attempting to integrate multimedia features into the mobile telephone.
The mid-eighties saw a shift from analogue cell phone networking to the digitalized First Generation (1G) networks. This shift came along with the authorization of the Motorola DynaTac. The Federal Communications Commission took charge of the mobile cell phone technology, ensuring that it monitors patents and other violations that were likely to arise (Bolin and Westlund 17).
Growth, Competition and Stabilization
This phase was accelerated by the shift of purpose of mobile phone technology from the business world to individual consumers. Features such as email, pager, address book and other key technologies that characterize mobile phones today were discovered from the 1980s. The Second Generation (2G) mobile phones came with improvements in handset capabilities and networking ((Bhalla, and Anand 28)). Users could keep their connections uninterrupted as they moved between transmission stations. The companies in charge of networking installed more mobile masts to ensure that their clients remain connected despite their movement.
2G mobile phone technology came along with the invention of text messaging and data services. This drew the attention of researchers to further studies that were aimed at increasing and enhancing the capabilities of the mobile phones. Private entities have invested into research that is aimed to make mobile phones easier to navigate by increasing the software titles, improving the interface and enhancing screen resolution. The mobile cell phone technology has been incorporated with that of the computer to produce smartphones that are widely used today (Zickuhr 5).
The contemporary telephone has replaced lots of other gadgets (Huang and Khai 324). A standard smartphone has multiple features that can help it perform the functions of a number of gadgets including a phone, camera, mp3 player, a portable gaming console, an alarm clock, a book, a remote control, a watch, a stopwatch, a photo album, a calculator, a wallet or ATM card, a flashlight, a map, a compass and a desktop or laptop computer. Therefore, making and receiving calls has become one among the many functions of a cell phone. More applications are being integrated into mobile phone technology as manufacturers compete for the expanding market.
Competition among mobile phone manufacturers and companies providing networking services have worked in favour of the consumer. Manufacturers are keen to ensure that they increase the capabilities of their phones while reducing the cost that the cost. These objectives vary depending on the markets being targeted. For instance, consumers of high-end smartphones mainly consider the capabilities of the mobile phones while disregarding price in most cases. Apple is one company that solely targets this market. Therefore, its goals are to ensure that they enhance the capabilities of their gadgets each time they produce a new version (Joel and Mace 2). The company produces both the software and the handsets. On the other hand, Google produces the Android software that is then disseminated for use on mobile phones manufactured by different entities (Bhalla, and Anand 32). This software is used on both high-end and low end smartphones. Markets for low-end smartphones are made up of individuals who seek a balance between phone capabilities and the price.
Both mobile phone handset and networking technology has made great advancements to what they are today. Unlike the entities that work on handset technology, those that specialize in networking can only offer services in limited geographical regions. Many mobile phone connection service providers work within national boundaries due to intense regulation of the field. Most networking services are subject to laws and strict regulations that are enforced by a government authority. 5G is the next major phase of mobile phone generations. The researchers aim at integrating this technology with satellite in addition to mobile masts
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