The mobile phone has turned 40, with the first call having been made by Motorola engineer Martin Cooper on 3 April 1973.
The device used was the Motorola DynaTAC, a nine inch tall device with a talk time of 35 minutes and a recharge period of 10 hours. It is estimated that in 2013, there are now seven billion devices, with users able to check emails, use maps and visit social networks on their smartphones. In the UK, smartphone penetration sits at 63%. Industry experts have predicted the consumption of video will surge with the advent of 4G technology, which will be rolled out across all four UK networks this year.
Dr Mike Short, former president of the Institute of Engineering and Technology, said: 'Since its first use 40 years ago, the mobile phone has completely changed our lives. The first decade was a research or a ‘demonstrator’ phase, rapidly followed by Analogue networks deployed over 10 years from the early 1980's largely based on car phones and used in business in the developed world.
'This soon led to the digital decade, mainly between 1993 and 2003, when consumerisation and globalisation of mobile really took off. This led to a further data adoption phase with the arrival of 3G and during 2003 - 2013 access to the internet and the wider use of smartphones became a reality.
'I predict that the next decade will see much further use of data and next generation (4G) services, as well as enhanced capacity / coverage. This will be followed by more spectrum releases, and many more services, particularly video related.'
Author: Graeme Neill