Next Gen Telecom

Even after two decades of existence, GSM still making a difference!

Today is the 20th anniversary of the first commercial call placed on GSM network. Ericsson’s own Jan Wäreby was there, calling then-General Director of Televerket, Sweden’s former national telecommunications agency, now part of TeliaSonera.

July 1, 1991 had been designated as the official start date for GSM, and similar official calls were made on that day in Denmark and Finland. The base stations had been set up, but only a limited area had network coverage, and most significantly, there were hardly any GSM phones available.

Jan Wäreby recalls: “Yngve Zetterström and I each talked for a while and everything worked, but we were really on a knife-edge. The engineers struggled right up to the last minute to get the central switchboard working, but finally they succeeded.”

The GSM Association says that today, 80{af589cdba9d77786c8c861317dbad60bba1e2ebbf56e2ffab874a1b59fde9ce3} of the world’s population is covered by GSM networks. Wäreby says: “We knew GSM would be big, but not this big.”

The events are described in the book “Changing the World,” by Anders Lugn and Svenolof Karlsson, published in 2009.



Tags : EricssonFirst GSM CallGSMGSM CallGSM Twentieth Anniversary