The Wireless Age
By Brandon Emanuel
Great advances have been made in wireless communication in recent years. Things such as wireless Internet are becoming just as popular as wired connections. Cell phones are making hard line phones almost obsolete. So where is this all taking us? Since wireless Internet and cell phones are two of todayís most popular wireless technologies, letís take a look at them to get some perspective on the progression of the wireless age.
What many people donít know is that the wireless age is not something that began yesterday. The first wireless devices used were walkie-talkies; they provided soldiers a wireless device to communicate with in WWII (Daley, 2005). Dr. Martin Cooper made the first working prototype of a cell phone, that he and Motorola took to New York to show the public; which then led to cell phone testing in 1977 in the U.S. and in Japan in 1979 (Cell Phone Carriers, 2004). Over the last twenty-five years, the cellular business has gone from a 3 million dollar a year market, to a 30 billion dollar a year market today (Cell Phone Carriers, 2004).
Cell phones have become greatly demanded by the public, it isnít surprising to see the Internet, and just about every other form of communicationís become wireless. Especially considering the speed of invention of wireless communications since the early 1990ís (Cell Phones Plans Guide, 2004). It was only fourteen years ago that Tim Berners-Lee created the World Wide Web (Webopedia, 2004).
One major reason for the popularity of wireless systems is because they are cost effective. Many colleges are using wireless systems because the cost of using wired connections is too great (Wireless Toolkit, 2004). Another reason is wireless devices like cell phones and Internet services allow people the freedom to be on the move and still be able work, check their email, or get that important phone call. In fact, now they can do all of those with just a cell phone. I know many people who use only a cell phone and donít have a home line because itís just another twenty-two dollars a month or more that they donít need to spend. A drawback to this is the hassle of cell phone plans and having to find a network with coverage in oneís area, and deciding how often, when, and where they will use their new service (Wireless Toolkit, 2004).
Wireless Internet is just plain convenient. Not only is the system always on, letting you avoid the pain of a dial up connection/disconnection through a modem, but it can also be just as fast as an xDSL or cable Internet package, and sometimes faster depending on your service package (Wireless Toolkit, 2004). Wireless Internet is becoming a must for some students who have to take online classes. Many have to deal with commuting to work and school along with trying to keep up with classes, and wireless Internet allows them flexibility.
So with the amazing speed at which wireless technology is advancing, the fact that it is cost effective not for just businesses but for individuals, and that it is easy to set up and use, it is only a matter of time before everything becomes wireless.
The Wireless Toolkit. (2004). Retrieved on October 18, 2004 from
Daley, B. (2005). Computers Are Your Future. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc.
Cell Phone Carriers. (2004). Retrieved on October 17, 2004, from http://www.cellphonecarriers.com/cell-phone-history.html.
Cell Phone Plans Guide. (2004). Retrieved on October 18, 2004, from
Webopedia. (2004). Retrieved on October 18, 2004, from http://www.webopedia.com/.