Can you imagine a life without cell phones? Consider a situation where you have to make an emergency call only to find that you don’t have your cell phone. How about a situation where you are lost and you need to get some directions but you don’t have your cell phone? In the past, cell phones were mainly used for making and receiving calls. Today, cell phones are used for various other purposes like surfing the Internet, chatting, navigation, and they can even be used as virtual assistants! In this light, cell phones have become a part and parcel of many people’s lives and they are quite indispensable.
When did it all begin? The concept of a cell phone was developed in the year 1947 by Bell Laboratories. Using the idea of a mobile car phone, the same technology was applied to make a portable cell phone.
- Origin: A short description of the origin of cell phones.
- Origin and Spread: The article discusses how cell phones originated and how they spread.
- History of Cell Phones: Here’s a timeline of the history of cell phones.
- Photographic History: Discover the history of cell phones via photographs.
Motorola’s Martin Cooper and other assisting inventors invented the first actual cell phone in the year 1973. An electrical engineering graduate, Cooper was the first person to work on the portable police radio and the one who made the first phone call with a mobile phone. The other inventors who assisted him in this project were Richard Dronsuth, Albert Mikulski, Charles Lynk, James Mikulski, John Mitchell, Roy Richardson, and John Sangster. In the beginning, cell phones were large and expensive instruments. Cell phones were first made available to the general public in the year 1984.
- Martin Cooper: A short biography of the man who invented the cell phone.
- Interview: An interview with Martin Cooper and Arlene Harris.
- Meet Marty Cooper: An article on the invention which changed the world.
How Cell Phones Work
The basic function of a cell phone is to make and receive calls. It does so around a wide geographic area and over a radio link. The mobile network operator provides a cellular network to which when a cell phone is connected, provides access to the public telephone network. This is in contrast to a cordless telephone which can be used only within a short range.
- The Physics of Cell Phones: The webpage provides information on parts of a cell phone, history, how cell phones work, and more.
- Wireless Telephone Coverage: The PDF by the FCC explains how wireless telephones work.
- How Cell Phones Work: Here’s a detailed discussion about how the phones work.
- Cell Phone Technology: A look at cell phone technology with many pictures and diagrams.
Use & Purpose of Mobile Phones
In this era of information technology, cell phones have become a connecting link between people as well as places. These mobile phones can help users to connect with friends and family members, conduct business operations, and they are extremely handy in an emergency. Apart from these basic functions, cell phones have other features like an option to have multiple SIM cards to make use of different calling plans, text messaging, sending and receiving emails, MMS service, Internet access, playing games and listening to music, watching movies, taking pictures, and so on. A new generation of cell phones called smartphones offers all these services along with general computing capabilities.
- Uses: A look at the various uses of cell phones.
- Cell Phone Culture: Joe Palca discusses the culture of cell phones with his guests.
- Multifunctional Uses: A brief description of the many uses of cell phones.
- Impact of Cell Phones: The PDF explores the impact of cell phones on people’s lives.
Safety & Risks
Unfortunately, cell phone benefits come with some safety concerns. Cell phones emit certain harmful electromagnetic radiations which may cause brain cancer in the long run. The depth of penetration depends on the signal strength and the proximity of the device to the human body. The use of cell phones may even result in some serious ailments like sleep disorders, increased reaction time, changes in brain activity, and epileptic seizures, However, nothing has been proven at this time. Moreover, cell phones can increase the risk of accidents when used by people who are driving. They are also known to interfere with medical devices like pacemakers and aircraft electronics.
- Cell Phone Safety: Here you will find a teacher’s guide, student mini-magazine, family pamphlet, and poster on cell phone safety.
- Road Safety: An investigation into cell phone safety in vehicles.
- It’s Your Health: A look at the safety hazards of cell phone towers and cell phones.
- Cancer Risk: Do cell phones cause cancer?
- Mobile Phones: The article provides information on the possible short-term and long-term effects of cell phone usage.
- The Need for Precaution: Sounds a caution on the effects of cell phone radiation.
The Future of Cell Phones
A device which has already become a lifeline for millions of people is sure to have an extremely great outlook. Tomorrow’s handsets will definitely be loaded with more features in comparison to the present ones. The cell phone networks will have an enhanced speed of data transmission. The handsets will become more sleek and trendier with more add-ons. In short, this tiny device is all set to revamp the communication industry by completely replacing the traditional landlines.