Motorola is a well-known and popular American multinational working in the field of telecommunications. The company, located in Schaumberg, Illinois, has gone through good times and bad in the years since their inception.
Motorola began as Galvin Manufacturing Corporation in Chicago. The company began in 1928, and their first product was a battery eliminator. They soon started work on car radios, which were not developed at the time. They created the design and assembled a prototype, and in 1930, they launched the Motorola radio. It turned out to be one of the first car radios to be commercially successful.
The developers, Bill Lear and Paul Galvin, came up with the name for their radio while they were traveling across the country in a car. The otor part came from the fact that they were in a motorized vehicle, and la was a part of many different types of audio equipment of the era. Thus, Motorola was born. It proved to be popular enough that they changed their name to Motorola in 1930, and they have been using it as their trademarked brand since.
They continued to make a number of interesting and innovative products during the first decades of their existence. The company created the first walkie-talkie in 1940, they worked in electronics for national defense, and a number of other areas. They continued working with radio in a number of different forms. One of their most important inventions during this period was a handheld AM radio that was an integral part of communication for the Allies during the war. Motorola was one of the top corporations in the country offering help during WWII.
NASA used the company's radio equipment for space flights starting in 1958. This included the moon landing in 1969. In fact, when Neil Armstrong gave his famous mini speech on the moon "One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind" he was speaking through a transceiver made by Motorola.
They worked in more than just radio communications though. They also delved in to making televisions starting in 1947. They produced the first large screen portable cordless television in 1960, and created a color picture tube in 1963. They remained in televisions for a little more than another decade. In 1974, they sold their television business to Matsushita, Panasonic's parent company.
Motorola has always been a company about pushing the envelope when it comes to technology and the things that are possible with it. This is why they are behind so many innovations as well as so many great moments in history.
They showed off the first handheld portable phone in 1973, and in 1974, they showed their first microprocessor, which became important for computers, videogames, and the automotive industries. They continued to innovate and create microprocessors that are even more powerful. Today, they are also a very important name in the field of mobile phones.
One of the things that many, even those in business, do not realize about Motorola is that they were the company that developed the Six Sigma process for quality improvement. Many companies of all types use this process, or something similar to it, today.
Motorola has seen some troubles as well, though. Between the years of 2007 and 2009, they lost around $4 billion. As a result, they divided the company into two separate and independent public companies Motorola Solutions and Motorola Mobility. This allowed them to allow each of these companies to focus on their specialties rather than splitting the focus of the company as a whole.
Motorola creates a number of different types of products. As mentioned, they create a wide range of different types of phone handsets. They were famous for their flip phones a decade or more ago, but they have been able to move into the realm of smartphones with touch screens easily. They also offer a range of different headphones, as well as 2-way radios, as well as cordless phones. They make a number of networking and wireless products, such as modems and routers as well. Motorola continues to be one of the most popular and recognized brands in the United States.