In news which will probably make most people reading this feel really old, the first text message was sent 25 years ago today.
Personally, I like to think the very first text was the classic ‘wuu2’, but unless a bunch of scientists sat in a room to create abbreviated text language, this isn’t very likely.
All jokes aside, the importance of the first text message is probably on a similar level as the creation of the first telephone itself. It’s fair to say without the text message we wouldn’t have most of the apps on our phone and communications may indeed look drastically different from the way they do now.
The first text actually read ‘Merry Christmas’ and was typed by Neil Papworth in 1992, a 22-year-old who probably didn’t realise just how important that milestone was going to be.
But Neil Papworth had no idea just how huge it was going to be. ‘I don’t know if they really thought it was going to be a big thing’, he said.
But, as Elizabeth Bruton, who works at the Science Museum, points out, it was incredibly important.
She told Sky News:
For the very first time we have mobile telephones that were more than just literal mobile telephones, moving beyond voice communications to a new application of the mobile spectrum – to sending, literally, text messages.
And we can see that continuation through to today when we have hundreds of thousands of applications on our smartphone. So SMS can be considered the first step towards the modern smartphone.
Texting really was incredible back in the day, wasn’t it? Using the old keyboards to send a hurried text under the desk at school on the brick phones which wouldn’t lose battery for like a week?
Those were the days. None of this WhatsApp nonsense.
Nowadays, texting is on the decline, but it is still massive. Ofcom statistics state that mobile phone users sent 102 billion texts in 2015, compared with 150 billion in 2011.
But in honour of the occasion today, send your oldest friend a text, preferably asking them if they’re coming on MSN any time soon.
Happy bday 2 txts :) xoxo