The pager, also called a beeper, is a device used for receiving short messages. Basically, a message is sent from a telephone or email and the pager beeps or vibrates to alert the user to the message. They are used by people that require a reliable notification system, such as medical professionals, and in areas where cell phone coverage in unreliable. The pager was once the most popular personal communication device, but their popularity has declined since the cell phone reached the mainstream market. Have you ever wondered who invented this device? Read on to find out.
Who invented the pager?
The pager was invented by Alfred Gross who patented his invention in 1949. He had intended pagers to be used by doctors, but there was a fear that they could disrupt the patients or the doctor during their time off. However, one hospital, New York City’s Jewish Hospital, began using the pager system in 1950. Initially, the pager wasn’t intended for public use, but after FCC approval in 1958, the idea of a consumer grade pager was born. Unfortunately for Gross, he didn’t get any interest in his device from the telecommunications companies.
Motorola invented a personal communications device that they called a pager (where we get the name today) in 1959. However, it wasn’t until 1974, when the Pageboy was released by Motorola, that the consumer market began to accept this type of device. The early versions of the pager provided a beep to alert the user and this led to the popular nickname for this type of device, the beeper.