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Effects of Technology: Cellular Telephones


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Effects of Technology: Cellular Telephones

Before there were cellular phones there was a service known as Mobile Telephone Service (MTS). This type of mobile service was based on radio frequency transmission not unlike that of the Citizens Band (CB) radio. The MTS systems were extremely bulky, required a lot of power to operate, and were normally hard mounted to a vehicle. These systems were also expensive to operate. The going rate per minute in 1982 was 50 cents for the first minute, 70 cents per minute for the next four minutes, and $1.05 for each additional minute over five minutes ( This technology was phased out by 1995 in favor of the new cellular telephone system. Motorola's DynaTAC 8000X, the world's first commercial portable cellular phone was introduced in 1983 ( This single innovation would have a profound effect on the way people communicate around the world. “October 13, 1983: The first commercial cellular system begins operating in Chicago. In December 1983, the second system is activated in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. corridor.” ( cfm/AID/10390). By the end on 1986, more than two million people had subscribed to cellular service and by 2004 subscribership reached over 180 million ( industry_info/index.cfm/AID/10390). As you can see cellular telephone service has boomed in the United States and abroad. Most everyone you see is using one to communicate to a business partner, family member, loved one, or friend. Today’s cell phones have brought the world a little closer together but may have impersonalized it as well. Cell phones are no longer used just for voice communications; they are also capable of sending text and email messages. People appear to

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