Vodafone celebrates 25 years since creating first text message

By Nana Appiah Acquaye, Accra, Ghana

The Chief Executive of Vodafone Ghana, Yolanda Cuba has reiterated that the future of technology is exciting and that customers in Ghana can count on Vodafone to help them navigate through it with confidence and optimism.

Commenting on the celebrations to mark Vodafone global 25 years anniversary, since the telecom company sent the world’s first text message which became a single act that sparked a revolution across the globe and has reached unbelievable proportions today, Ms Cuba noted that the need to connect with each other has been intrinsic since creation and now Vodafone is proud to be leading the way in harnessing more innovative ways to ensure this connection is made easy.

“Little did we know that a global transformation was about to take over the world when that text message went through. The need to connect with each other has been intrinsic since creation and now Vodafone is proud to be leading the way in harnessing more innovative ways to ensure this connection is made easy,” she stated.

In 1992, Neil Papworth, a 22-year-old software programmer, sent the first ever text message from a computer to his colleague Richard Jarvis. Papworth had been working as a developer and test engineer to create a Short Message Service (SMS) for his client, Vodafone. That very first text, sent on the 3rd December 1992, simply said ‘MERRY CHRISTMAS’. 

In 1999, seven years after Neil Papworth’s first SMS message, Vodafone was already leading an innovation to ensure texts could finally be exchanged on multiple networks, propelling them into greater popularity than ever before. Today, 'MERRY CHRISTMAS’ messages are now sent by millions all over the world using texts, videos and emojis.

Marking the 25th anniversary since the first text, Papworth has imagined a more modern version of his 1992 Christmas message, this time using emoji’s.

“In 1992, I had no idea just how popular texting would become, and that this would give rise to emojis and messaging apps used by millions. I only recently told my children that I sent that first text. Looking back with hindsight, it’s clearer to see that the Christmas message I sent was a pivotal moment in mobile history,” Papworth said.

 

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