Motorola Solutions celebrates its 90th anniversary
Written by: Sam Fenwick | Published:
A Motorola employee demonstrating the use of the Handie-Talkie SCR536 handheld two-way radio back in 1941. In comparison, the compact ST7000 TETRA radio (right) is much easier to handle

Motorola Solutions is celebrating its 90th anniversary today (25 September).

Since this day in 1928, the company has been responsible for some of the key milestones in the communications industry’s history. from automobile radios and the first two-way radios for public safety in the 1930s, to providing the communication system that carried humanity’s first words from the moon in 1969 and launching the first commercial handheld in 1983.

From its humble beginnings as the Galvin Manufacturing Corporation – which was incorporated on 25 September 1928 with five employees, $565 in cash, tools worth $750, and a design for a battery eliminator – Motorola Solutions has grown into an international company with around 15,000 employees (as of 2017) and an annual turnover of $6.38 billion (2017).

“It was always our mission to connect people through technology and particularly during those vital moments that matter in their lives. Our customers rely on us for the expertise, services and solutions we provide, trusting our years of experience and innovation,” said Iain Clarke, senior vice president and general manager, Europe, Middle East and North Africa at Motorola Solutions.

Today, the company serves more than 100,000 public safety and commercial customers in more than 100 countries, holds more than 5,500 patents and it spent $568 million on R&D last year. Earlier this year, the company acquired Avigilon, which brings its video surveillance and analytics platform into public safety and further expands Motorola Solutions’ portfolio with new products and technologies for commercial customers. Motorola Solutions also collaborates with partners like Neurala, which specialises in artificial intelligence (AI), to develop real-time intelligence solutions that can learn at the edge and automatically search for persons and objects of interest.

“Our next industrial revolution will be fuelled by artificial intelligence,” adds Clarke. “AI will be a core transformative way by which we are rethinking everything we are doing and applying it across all our products. Based on this development, Intelligence Augmentation, Intelligence Platforms and Intelligence-as-a-Service will be main drivers for the public safety and commercial innovations in the future.”

“In the current age of transformation, public safety agencies need proven technology-driven solutions that enable them to operate more safely and efficiently. It requires deeper intelligence that builds safer cities and communities by improving how information flows between citizens, first responders, and agencies. As we look ahead to the future, we want to help customers better collect this information, make it actionable and securely distribute it across mission-critical devices and easy-to-manage networks.

“It’s a future of innovation that will be fuelled by artificial intelligence (AI). All objects in our daily lives and working environments can and will become smart, and AI will be a core transformative way by which we are rethinking everything we are doing and applying it across all our products. The real power and potential of this revolution will not be about how we augment the human decision-making. The best chess player in the world today is not an AI or a human grandmaster, but rather a team that brings human creativity and strategy augmented by deep machine reinforcement learning.”

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