Timeline of telephony in Finland
This is a timeline of telephony in Finland.
|Time period||Development summary|
|1890s||The first telephone company is founded in the country.|
|1910s||The First World War devastates large parts of Europe. Russia fears a German attack via Finland and improves telecommunications for defense purposes with Helsinki and Tallinn. The revolution in Russia in November 1917 has dramatic consequences for Finland, which declares independence in December 1917.|
|1930s||Private telephone companies start being covered by statistics.|
|1960s||P&T is in the forefront of using modems for data transmission in the mid-decade.|
|1970s||The Nordic mobile telephony (NMT) standard is developed by the Finland’s state-owned Post, Telegraph and Telephone (PTT), in collaboration with the Swedish, Norwegian and Danish PTTs. Finland would become the first country worldwide to launch a digital network for mobile communications. The automation of the national telephone system in Finland is completed at the end of the decade.|
|1980s||Finland has more mobile telephones per capita than any place else in the world between 1980 and 1985. The capacities of the NMT networks would grow rapidly in the decade. in the mid-1980s, well before its European neighbours, Finland starts deregulating its telecom sector, which would result in a decentralised system of national and foreign - owned telecom operators. An environment of increased competition would provide continuous incentives for upgrading different components of the telecom network and for introducing a variety of technological solutions and innovations among firms participating in the mobile telephony cluster.|
|1990s||Finland becomes a leader in the development of mobile telephony. The world’s first Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) is launched as the successor of the NMT. It would subsequently also become the European standard for mobile telecommunications. As a result, Nokia and other Nordic telecom equipment suppliers would benefit from first mover advantages in the mobile telecom industry worldwide. The number of landline telephones reaches its highest in Finnish households in the first half of the decade. After the peak, the number of households with no landline phone would grow rapidly, as a consequence of young people establishing their own households and deciding not to get a landline connection.|
|2000s||Telia merges with Sonera and Telecom Finland is corporatized. Finnish giant Nokia reaches its peak at a worldwide level.|
|1877 (end of year)||Infrastructure||The first telephone line is erected in Helsinki towards the end of the year; 18 months after the telephone was patented in the United States.|
|1882||Organization||An early telephone company is founded in Helsinki.|
|1894||Organization||A private company for long distance telephone traffic is created in Finland, linking local networks among the cities, towns and villages. The Telegraph Office would take no part in the telephone expansion, which remains fully in the hands of national non-state Finnish interests.|
|1905||Policy||Telephone lines for local cross border traffic between Tornio in Finland and Haparanda in Sweden are permitted after clandestine lines are revealed.|
|1918 (February)||Policy||Carl Gustaf Mannerheim, the Finnish commander-in chief, declares the telegraph service to be a Finnish department. The Telegraph Administration takes over the telegraph system and the telephone line to Saint Petersburg and some military long lines to coastal areas. This forms the embryo of a state operated long-distance telephone service.|
|1919||Infrastructure||A telephone service opens via sea cable from Helsinki to Tallinn in Estonia.|
|1923||Acquisition||The Finnish Telegraph Administration acquires the East Finland Telephone Co in Viipuri, its first local telephone network. Gradually, the Administration would acquire more rural networks.|
|1924||Publication||The Statistical Yearbook of Finland starts being published, providing data on the activities of the State telegraph and telephone companies.|
|1928||Infrastructure||The first telephone cable across the Baltic Sea via Åland facilitates telephony between Sweden and South and Central Finland.|
|1932||Publication||The Finnish Yearbook starts publishing data describing the activities of private telephone companies. Private telephony activity is found to be many times more extensive than that of the State. State telephone companies have 227 exchanges whereas private telephone companies have as many as 1,998 of them. Likewise, in the same year the State has 1,763 "subscriber apparatuses" whereas private telephone companies had 133,456.|
|1935||Acquisition||Major parts of the long distance telephone network are nationalized by the Finnish Government in order to ensure continued expansion of the network into less profitable rural areas.|
|1938||Infrastructure||A second telephone cable between Sweden and Finland is installed.|
|1939||Background||The Soviet armies cause major devastation in Finland after their attack late in the year.|
|1939 – 1945||Statistics||A total of 815 local telephone companies have been set up in Finland by the Second World War.|
|1944||Background||The Continuation War finishes, implying heavy damage to telecommunications in the north of Finland when retreating German troops inflict major destruction.|
|1946||A manual telex service is launched in the country. Automation would start a decade later.|
|1952||Infrastructure||A third telephone cable between Finland and Sweden opens, just in time for the 1952 Summer Olympics.|
|1952 – 1962||Acquisition||Some 287 local telephone companies are bought by the Finnish P&T during this period. Most of them require thorough technical upgrading and automation.|
|1964||Technology||Data communications via modems in the telephone network is introduced in the country.|
|1967||Technology||Automation of incoming international telephone calls begins in the country.|
|1971||Technology||The Autoradiopuhelin (ARP), a zero-generation (0G), is introduced as the first commercially operated public mobile phone network in Finland. Mobile telephony is started as a manual mobile telephone network in the 160 MHz band, which is installed nationally to serve road vehicles.|
|1974||Technology||A computer controlled AKE 13 telephone switch is inaugurated to handle international direct dialing of traffic, initially to the Nordic countries.|
|1978||Statistics||The ARP reaches 100% geographic coverage with 140 base stations.|
|1978||Organization||Tecnotree is founded as a telecommunications company. It develops and supplies messaging and charging solutions for operators and service providers.|
|1980||Statistics||There are almost twice as many telephones per 100 population in Helsinki as in the rest of the country.|
|1981 (October 1)||Technology||Finnish mobile telephony company Mobira launches the Nordic Mobile Telephone (NMT) service, the world's first international cellular network and the first to allow international roaming. NMT (Nordisk MobilTelefoni or Nordiska MobilTelefoni-gruppen, Nordic Mobile Telephony in English) is the first fully automatic cellular phone system. An analogue system, NMT is specified by Nordic telecommunications administrations (PTTs) and opens for service in response to the increasing congestion and heavy requirements of the manual mobile phone networks: ARP (150 MHz) in Finland, MTD (450 MHz) in Sweden and Denmark, and OLT in Norway. NMT is based on analog technology (first generation or 1G) and two frequency bands exist at the time: NMT-1800 and NMT-900.|
|1982||Technology||The automatic NMT (Nordic Mobile Telephone) 450 network first appears in the statistics, with 2,648 subscriptions.|
|1986||Statistics||The ARP reaches peak of 35,560 users.|
|1987||Technology||The NMT 900 network first appears in the statistics, with 2,038 subscriptions.|
|1987||Policy||The Adoption of the Telecommunications Act is enacted, with the purpose of dissociating commercial telecom operations and regulatory functions, and liberalizing the terminal equipment industry. Administration of the telecommunications sector is transferred from the Transport Executive in the department of Economic Affairs to the Ministry of Transport and Communications.|
|1988 (September 19)||Organization||Radiolinja is founded as a GSM operator.|
|1988||Policy||The New Radio Act is adopted, allowing for competition in corporate networks and data transmission to be partially liberaliszed.|
|1990||Data concerning mobile phones is added to the Finnish Statistical Yearbook, concurrently with data on transmissions networks.|
|1990||Statistics||The import of telecom equipment and parts represents 0.8% of Finnish GDP.|
|1990||Policy||The special rights of the Finnish National Board of Post and Tel ecommunications are abolished, allowing for the introduction of free competition in data and GSM networks.|
|1990 – 1991||Policy||Licenses to regional radio-telecommunications networks are granted. Free competition becomes allowed among corporate networks.|
|1991||Technology||The world’s first Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) is launched in Finland as the successor of the Nordic Mobile Telephone, and subsequently also becomes the European standard for mobile telecommunications. As a result, Nokia and other Nordic telecom equipment suppliers would benefit from first mover advantages in the mobile telecom industry worldwide.|
|1991||Technology||Local company Radiolija develops early (2G) miniaturized mobile telephones.|
|1992||Policy||Switched data transmission is exempted from licences. Competitive licenses to long-distance and local telecommunications are granted.|
|1993||Statistics||94 per cent of all households in Finland have at least one landline telephone.|
|1994||Policy||Local and international telecommunications are subject to free competition.|
|1994||Telecom Finland is corporatized.|
|1995||Background||Finland joins the European Union and its Single Market. This would imply a full removal of trade and investment barriers and a substantial increase of trade volumes with other EU member states. Trade in intermediate and finished telecom equipment would be particularly facilitated between Finland and its EU trading partners thanks to the harmonisation of essential product regulations and specifications plus the introduction of the EU Suppliers’ Declaration of Conformity for telecom and electrical equipment and parts among EU countries.|
|1995||Policy||Competing licenses to distributed control system networks are granted.|
|1996||Policy||The Telecommunications Act is amended.|
|1997||Policy||The Telecommunications Market Act is adopted, and the Telecommunications Act is repealed.|
|1998||Telecom Finland is renamed Sonera.|
|1999 (July)||Statistics||More Finnish households already have a mobile phone than a landline telephone.|
|2000||Statistics||The Finnish telecommunications industry as a whole employs some 83,000 people in over 4000 firms, representing 6.9% of the GDP.|
|2003||Statistics||Manufacturing of telecom equipment represents 90% of total ICT manufacturing value-added in Finland.|
|2000||Statistics||The Finnish telecommunications industry represents 8.4% of the GDP, up from 6.9% in 2000.|
|2000||Decommission||The ARP network is closed at the end of the year, along with NMT-900.|
|2002 (December)||Organization||Telia merges with Sonera.|
|2004 (May 17)||Organization||Tele Finland is established by TeliaSonera as a mobile virtual network operator. in order to respond to the demand for inexpensive GSM calls in the country.|
|2006||Statistics||The import of telecom equipment and parts represents over 3% of Finnish GDP. In absolute terms, in Finland, imports of telecom equipment and parts has actually almost been multiplied by ten since 1990.|
|2006||Statistics||Finnish multinational Nokia peakes, taking 41% of the mobile phone market worldwide.|
|2007 (August)||Statistics||About 41% of Finnish households still have a landline telephone while 97% have at least one mobile phone.|
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How the timeline was built
The initial version of the timeline was written by User:Sebastian.
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- Timeline of mobile telephony
- Timeline of telephony in Norway
- Timeline of telephony in Sweden
- Timeline of Nokia
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