- radio (n.)
- "wireless transmission of voice signals with radio waves," 1907, abstracted from earlier combinations such as radio-receiver (1903), radiophone (1881), radio-telegraphy (1898), from radio- as a comb. form of Latin radius "beam." Use for "radio receiver" is first attested 1913; sense of "sound broadcasting as a medium" is from 1913.
It is not a dream, but a probability that the radio will demolish blocs, cut the strings of red tape, actuate the voice "back home," dismantle politics and entrench the nation's executive in a position of power unlike that within the grasp of any executive in the world's history. ["The Reading Eagle," Reading, Pa., U.S.A., March 16, 1924]
Wireless remained more widespread until World War II, when military preference for radio turned the tables. As an adjective by 1912, "by radio transmission;" meaning "controlled by radio" from 1974. Radio _______ "radio station or service from _______" is recorded from 1920. A radio shack (1946) was a small building housing radio equipment.
- radio (v.)
- 1916, from radio (n.). Related: Radioed; radioing.