The Handie-Talkie
The Handie-Talkie
A World War II era Handie-Talkie in a 1992 MicroTAC cell phone advertisement

In 1940, Galvin Manufacturing (the company didn't become known as Motorola until 1947) invented the "Handie-Talkie."

As America geared up for combat in World War II, company engineers predicted that soldiers would need a way to communicate with one another while on foot. At the time, the only radios the Army traveled with were installed in Jeeps.

Galvin's solution was a portable, two-way AM radio that was battery-powered. The "Handie-Talkie" was limited to a range of just one mile, but it became widely used during World War II.

Last updated August 16 2011: 11:44 AM ET
Join the Conversation