The History of Radios

Radio was invented as a result of two other inventions, the telegraph, and the telephone. These three types of equipment are tightly related, in fact, radio technology started off as “wireless telegraphy”. The term radio is usually used to refer to either an electronic appliance that we can use to listen to or content playing with you. The radio started off with the discovery of “radio waves” or the electromagnetic waves that have the ability to transmit music, speech, pictures and other data through the air. Examples of devices that make use of the electromagnetic waves are the radio, microwaves, cordless phones, television, remote controlled toys, and many other devices.

The existence of radio waves was predicted by a Scottish physicist James Clerk Maxwell in the 1860s, and by 1886, a German physicist Heinrich Rudolph Hertz demonstrated that quick moment of variation of electric current could be projected into space as radio waves, just like those of light and heat. And in 1866, an American dentist named Mahlon Loomis effectively demonstrated the phenomenon of “wireless telegraphy”. Loomis showed the world that wireless telegraphy can become the new method of long-distance communication. He made a meter and connected it to one kite, causing another one to move. This was the first ever instance of wireless aerial communication.

The feasibility of radio communication was further proved by an Italian inventor, Guglielmo Marconi. He sent and received his first radio signal in the year 1895, at this time he sent the first wireless signal across the English Channel and after two years later, received the letter “S”, this was telegraphed from England to Newfoundland which happened in the year 1899. This was the first successful transatlantic radiotelegraph message in 1902. Two other of Marconi contemporaries, Nikola Tesla and Nathan Stubblefield also acquired the patents for wireless radio transmitters. But it was Nikola Tesla that was credited with being the first person, to acquire the patent to radio technology.

Radio-telegraphy is the process of sending by radio waves the same dot-dash messages (also known as Morse code) used in a telegraph. The transmitters at that time were known as spark-gap machines. This transmitter was developed mainly for ship-to-shore and ship-to-ship communication. This method was used in communicating between two points but wasn’t the public radio broadcasting we know today. The first ever radio speech was transmitted across the continent from New York City to San Francisco and across the Atlantic Ocean. This speech was transmitted the naval radio station NAA at Arlington, Virginia right to the Eiffel tower in Paris. The first daily schedule of radio programmes kickstarted on November 2, 1920, in Westinghouse’s KDKA-Pittsburgh where the Harding-cox election returns where broadcasted.

The first ever ship-to-shore two-way radio conversation happened in1922 between Deal beach, New Jersey, and the S S America, stationed 400 miles at the sea. And in 1929, high sea public radiotelephone service was fully inaugurated. From this period, technologies evolved and the radio we know today was developed from various stages of improvements upon the existing equipment.