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News Link • Science, Medicine and Technology

The Evolution of Motorola’s Wireless Technology

• Kristina Grifantini

1930 First Motorola brand car radio (reproduction), model 5T71

With this week's announcement of Google's plan to buy Motorola Mobility, we took a look at the significant technology milestones in the company’s history. Motorola, founded in 1928 as the Galvin Manufacturing Corporation, was pivotal in advancing communications from business to space and government. Achievements included everything from releasing the world’s first commercial handheld cellular phone to introducing one of the first commercially successful car radios in 1930, reproduced above.

This radio was the first product to carry the Motorola brand. It was designed to be mass-produced, affordable, and easily installed. The components, as shown in this reproduction, included (left to right) radio receiver, tuning control, and speaker.

circa 1940 Handie-Talkie SCR536 portable two-way radio

In 1940, Galvin Manufacturing Corporation (later Motorola) engineers developed the Handie-Talkie SCR536 AM portable two-way radio.  This handheld radio became an icon on World War II battlefronts.

1943 Illustration of U.S. soldiers using Motorola SCR300 backpack FM portable two-way radio

In 1943 Galvin Manufacturing Corporation (later Motorola) designed the world's first FM portable two-way radio, the SCR300 backpack model, for the U.S. Army Signal Corps. Weighing 15.9 kilograms (35 pounds), the "walkie-talkie" radio had a range of 16–32 kilometers (10–20 miles).


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