The Mega Brands That Built America Recap for Easy Money

The Mega Brands That Built America Recap for End the Landlines

The Mega Brands That Built America Recap for End the Landlines

-The Mega-Brands That Built America is back! Tonight, we are covering phone companies.

-In 1973, AT&T comes up with the idea of having phone towers and are dominating the phone industry. Despite this, they have to appeal the FCC to allow them to be the only provider of cellular service and car phones.

-However, Motorola wants in on the action and tries coming up with ideas to take over the phone business. Enter the invention of the cell phone.

-However, despite the fact that they have what would become a multi-billion-dollar idea on their hands, Motorola has 90 days to come up with something for the FCC.

-Motorola begins working around the clock to prevent AT&T from taking their idea and monopolizing it. They use the car phone idea as a model and go to town making the cell phone. With days to spare, Marty Cooper, the man behind this idea, makes the first call….intended for Joel Engel on AT&T. He is tickled pink when it works….Joel, not so much.

-The FCC makes a decision about Motorola’s cell phone…and it is a GO! However, they need to find a way to make signals and towers so it can work nationwide. It takes ten years, but they release the first cell phone in 1983.

-At the time, the cell phone cost thousands of dollars, but sold 300,000 units. This causes several companies to try and come up with their own version of the phone and creating a competition.

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-Two best friends in Canada get in on the action and will go on to invent the Blackberry. However, their company at the time, Research in Motion, tries to pitch the idea of wireless technology and collaborate with General Motors. Pretty soon, messaging on computers was invented, putting them on the map.

-Back to Motorola! Cell phones are being featured in pop culture….showing up on shows like Saved by the Bell and movies like Wall Street.

-Companies all over the world are trying to come up with competitive phones, including one business called Samsung.

-As cell phones evolve, phone size changes….into something pocket sized. However, the biggest hurdle is making sure it has a battery that lasts longer than the OG phone.

-Technology is taking over, including email being invented. Bill Clinton became the first President to have an e-mail address.

-Research in Motion still had many good ideas but struggled with marketing….until Jim Balsillie joined the company. He decided the company needed a next level product, so he helped come up with the idea of text messaging.

-Motorola tries coming up with the idea of making more affordable cell phones….but Nokia beats them to the punch. They were affordable, portable and small enough to carry in a bag.

-The Nokia phones had one small problem….butt dialing. The buttons were too delicate and if pushed just right in a bag or pocket, would accidentally make calls. Motorola would use this as an idea to make an even better phone.

-Research in Motion used the pager as a model to work on communication between phones via texting….just as dial up internet, e-mails and digital communication was becoming a way of the world. They also wanted to take it to the next level so people could e-mail on the go, but kept running into problems.

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-Motorola took the portable phone to the next level and invented the flip phone. Not Star Trek—StarTAC! It was the pocket phone that didn’t butt dial and it soon became a game changer in the world of cell phones. It was also the first phone that had the vibrate feature to subtly let people know they were getting a call.

-Meanwhile, Research in Motion were working hard on their idea and finally paired with Mobitex to make it happen. They would release Inter@ctive in 1996. It couldn’t make calls, but was more of a two-way pager.

-Motorola gets wind of the idea and decided to top it by coming out with the Pagewriter.

-Not to be outdone, RIM decides to find a way to combine both devices….thanks to a night in a bar. In 1999, they begin working on the idea and end up inventing the Blackberry, which led to how we now text today……and the first smartphone.

-The Blackberry got it’s name because the buttons look like blackberries.

-The Blackberry becomes a runaway hit and before long, more smartphones were released, including the iPhone, which was the first touch screen phone.

-Today, the Blackberry is no longer available, but the company still lives on, working on other types of technology.

-More next week, stay tuned!

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Author: Sammi Turano
Sammi has been a journalist for over a decade, specializing in entertainment, lifestyle, sports and celebrity news. She is the owner of TVGrapevine and Football in High Heels and the Host of Grapevine in High Heels With Sammi.