For better or worse, cell phones are a cornerstone of our current lifestyle. But they haven’t always been. Martin Cooper of Motorola, a Fortune 500 technology company still headquartered in the Chicago suburbs, invented the cell phone.

Cooper’s 1973 prototype cell phone weighed 2.5 pounds and took 10 hours to charge. All it did was place and receive calls, and Cooper could only talk on it for 35 minutes before the battery died.

Five years later, AT&T launched the nation’s first trial cell service in Chicago.

In 1984, Motorola started selling the first publicly available cell phone. Their size and weight decreased over the years, and the rest is history.

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Want to know more about Motorola? Visit the company’s website for a cool timeline of its biggest innovations.

Curious about Martin Cooper? Click here to read the story of the cell phone.