The first mobile telephone call was made on 17 June 1946 from a car in St. Louie, Missouri, USA , using the Bell System's Mobile Telephone Service. This was followed in 1956 by the world’s first partly automatic car phone system, Mobile System A (MTA) in Sweden. The MTA phones were composed of vacuum tubes and relays and had a weight of 88.2 pounds (40 kg).
Martin Cooper a Motorola researcher and executive, led the team that developed the first hand-held mobile telephone for use on a cellular network. Using a somewhat heavy portable handset, Cooper made the first call on a handheld mobile phone on April 3, 1973 to his rival, Dr. Joel S. Engel of Bell Labs.
The new invention sold for $3,995 and weighed two pounds, leading to a nickname "the brick".
The world's first commercial automated cellular network was launched in Japan by NTT in 1979, initially in the metropolitan area of Tokyo. In 1981, this was followed by the simultaneous launch of the Nordic Mobile Telephone (NMT) system in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. Several countries then followed in the early-to-mid 1980s including the UK, Mexico and Canada.
On 6 March 1983, the Dyna TAc mobile phone launched on the first US 1G network by Ameritech. It cost $100m to develop, and took over a decade to hit the market. The phone had a talk time of just half an hour and took ten hours to charge. Consumer demand was strong despite the battery life, weight, and low talk time and waiting lists were in the thousands.
In 1991, the second generation (2G) cellular technology was launched in Finland by Radiolinja on the GSM standard, which sparked competition in the sector as the new operators challenged the incumbent 1G network operators.