The first ever SMS text message was 'Merry Christmas'

The first ever SMS text message was 'Merry Christmas'

It's been 30 years since this first festive text message was sent

Written 3rd December 2022 | Subscribe to our Christmas newsletter

The text message is celebrating it's 30th birthday today. On 3rd December 1992, the first ever SMS text message was sent by a Vodafone engineer called Neil Papworth in Berkshire, United Kingdom.

It was sent in order to test out the new technology and simple read the beautiful words "Merry Christmas".

It was sent to one of the company's bosses, Richard Jarvis, who was at a Christmas party and did not reply.

Text messaging then went on to be used all over the world with it's peak number of messages being sent annually in the billions. In the year 2010 the word 'texting' entered the dictionary.

SMS text messages are still used today, although internet based messaging platforms such as Whatsapp and iMessage are a lot more popular due to being free and end to end encrypted.

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Image credit: Ben Wood

The first text message was sent to this model of phone - the Orbitel 901.

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