7 Revolutions that Nokia gave us : A walkthrough Nokia

history of nokia featured image

Nokia history

Nokia, a Finnish communications and information technology manufacturer, gave us the technologies without which the world today would’ve been unimaginable. But surprisingly most of us do not know what Nokia gave us, maybe because we’re yet too busy counting Apple’s contribution to the world, which is nothing when compared to Nokia’s contribution.

Nokia was founded in 1865 as a paper mill. The name Nokia came from Nokianvirta, the river on banks of which the paper mill was located. Nokia grew in business, and it was 1960 when they stepped into electronics. From 1960­ to 1979, they worked with the government and developed many devices for military use.

nokia headoffice“The Nokia House”, the head office of Nokia located in Keilaniemi, Espoo, just outside Helsinki, the capital of Finland. 

Nokia mobiles had been taken over by Microsoft in the year 2013 but before that, there’s a long Nokia history. It was the year 1979, which marked Nokia’s steps into telephony, and then after, the company gave us some sweet revolutions.

1. First Wireless Telephony Services: ­1981

1G

In 1981, Nokia created ‘Nordic Mobile Telephony’ (Later NMT), the first fully automatic telephony system. We had manual mobile systems since 1966, but the need for an automatic telephonic service gave rise to NMT.

Initially, the work began in 1970, when Nordic Mobile Telephony chose 450 MHZ band to provide wireless services to the world, and the first automated services were ready for general use in 1981, with their NMT­450. NMT was based on analog technology, also called as 1G or First Generation. Later, they also worked on 900 MHZ frequency and made the NMT­900.

The NMT­900 was closed down in 2001, followed by the NMT­450, which served till 2004.

2. Short Messaging Service­: 1983

In 1983, Nokia launched ‘Sanomalaitejärjestelmä’, which was the first digital, and portable messaging device. It was used by the Finnish army for sending encrypted data wirelessly.

Nokia Sanomalaite

The Short Messaging Service (SMS), which we use today in our day ­to ­day life was adapted by Sanomalaitejärjestelmä later in 1993.

3. First Portable Mobile Phone­: 1987

In, 1987 Nokia launched the first portable phone, which was named Mobira Cityman.

nokia mobira citymanIn the hand: The Mobira Cityman

It was compact, people could carry it with them where ever they went. And it even weighed lighter, when compared to the later mobiles of then. It weighed around 800 grams, with battery. The Mobira Cityman was sold for around $6000, or 4500 Euros. It later became a popular high-end device and a status symbol.

4. First GSM call­: 1991

GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications, originally Groupe Spécial Mobile), is the most widely used network type today. It was developed to describe the protocols for the second generation or 2G, which is used even today.

first gsm call nokiaThe Finnish PM making the first GSM call.

The first GSM call was made by the Finnish Prime Minister Harri Holkeri to Kaarina Suonio (mayor in the city of Tampere). The call was made with a Nokia made phone over a Nokia built network.

5. GPRS­ : 2002

It is very much possible that you’re reading this news article on your mobile phone, or tablet using 2G, 3G, or maybe 4G.

nokia 3510Nokia 3510

The first phone to process data over GPRS was again a Nokia device. Nokia’s 2002’s the flagship phone, the Nokia 3510 became the first ever phone to process cellular data wirelessly over GPRS, which later led to inventions of what we use now, 2G, 3G, 4G.

6. Mobile Camera­: 2002

Back in 2002, when cameras in mobile phones weren’t so popular, Nokia launched its first phone with a 0.3 Mega Pixel Camera on board. The Nokia 7650 was also the first smartphone by Nokia, running Symbian OS (S60).

first camera mobile nokia 7650The first camera phone by Nokia

At one point Nokia was the largest supplier of cameras to the world because of its built-in camera phones. From Nokia 7650’ VGA cameras to Lumia 1020′ 41 Mega Pixel camera, Nokia changed people’s views for mobile phones.

7. Lumia Smartphones­: 2011

From 1998 to 2012, Nokia was the largest vendor of mobile phones in the world. But by 2012, as the market focus was shifting on Android and iOS, Nokia’s market share relatively dropped. It was then, in February 2011, Stephen Elop and Microsoft’s CEO Steve Ballmer jointly announced a major business partnership between Nokia and Microsoft.

nokia lumia 710 and nokia lumia 800The first Lumia devices

Nokia later in October of 2011, launched their first two devices: mid­range Lumia 710 and high­end Lumia 800. Later they announced the Lumia 900 which became the best seller on amazon.com.

Before Microsoft took over Nokia completely, Nokia released 26 Lumia devices.

The end of Nokia mobile phones

On 3 September 2013, Microsoft announced about its purchase of Nokia’s mobile division. As per the contract, Microsoft kept on using the brand name Nokia, on their Lumia devices until October 2014.

nokia microsoft deal

The Lumia 535, marked the end of Nokia in the telephony industry. The Lumia 525, was announced on 11th November 2014. It was the first Microsoft branded Lumia phone, which was the end for Nokia.

Nokia’s existence

As per the $7 billion deal with Microsoft, Nokia won’t be making any other smartphones, or handsets at­least for 30 months. Contract clause period ends in January 2016.

Though Nokia has taken a farewell from Mobility devices’ business, Nokia continues to make devices that don’t fall under the mobile phones category. Nokia, after it’s break up with Microsoft has launched an Android launcher, Zlauncher.

Nokia also launched their first electronic device after their break up, i.e. Nokia N1, an iPad like an Android tablet. The N1 is announced to sport a 7.9-inch display and will come with Android 5.0 Lolipop out of the box. The tablet will be hitting China first, for $249. Initially, we’ll only see the Wifi version of the tablet.

nokia n1 tablet

Nokia also retains its “Here maps” business, a navigation system which Nokia acquired in 2007.

Friends, have you ever used any Nokia device? If yes, then do share your views with us regarding your experience with Nokia mobiles in the comment section below.

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Image Courtesy: Nokia.com and Wikipedia

Nokia Lumia Smartphones at Amazon
Nokia Lumia Smartphones at Snapdeal
Nokia Lumia Smartphones at Flipkart

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6 Responses

  1. Chirag Jakhodia says:

    A deep insight into the nokia history..! just knew 4 facts out of the 7..! Great work..! Keep it up..!:)

    • Rishabh says:

      Thanks for visiting Telecom Panda Chirag. Glad to hear that the article was helpful. Also, do subscribe to our newsletters for timely updates on our new stories. 🙂

  2. Akash says:

    Well, Nokia is the reason mobile phones are what they are today. They revolutionized the industry. Hats off to Nokia and well written article Rishab 🙂

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