Topics: Mobile phone / Pages: 4 (1216 words) / Published: Sep 15th, 2014
THE CELLPHONE HAS COME A LONG WAY SINCE IT WAS FIRST USED IN 1973
Last week, on Thursday to be precise, the mobile phone turned forty. Of course, mobile phone penetration in India took off only around 2000, so for us, realistically speaking, the cell phone this year entered its early teens.
But if we go back to the first call ever to be made from a mobile phone, we have to go back to April 3, 1973, which can mean only one thing: the cell phone just entered its middle age.
The seminal moment came when Martin Cooper, a vice president at Motorola, stepped out on to a New York sidewalk and made the first cellular call.
Mobile phones, now numbering five billion worldwide, would change the way we live.
Cooper cheekily made the first call to his rival, AT&T's Joel Engell, who headed Bell Labs.
The two had been in competition to create the world's first cell phone.
This was a time when even cordless landline phones hadn't come into use.
Cooper famously told him, "Joel, I'm calling you from a cellular phone, a real cellular phone, a handheld, portable, real cellular phone."
Engell responded with envious silence. Cooper later joked that his assumption was that Engell was grinding his teeth.
When Engell was later asked about it in interviews, he feigned no recollection of the moment-a moment that would change the course of human destiny forever, for the cell phone, nowadays, is seen as more than just a talking device.
In the twenty-first century, people talk about the transformative power of the cell phone.
It is seen as having far-reaching consequences for education, health and even povertyalleviation.
Have you heard the line, "If you want people to think out of the box, you shouldn't create the box in the first place"?
That was Martin Cooper's most quoted phrase.
Nowadays, he's retired and at eighty-four years of age, spends most of his time automating his house and giving talks.
His WiFi can chat with his thermostat, and