The concept of text messaging was first developed in 1984, and the first text message was sent eight years later in December of 1992. The message read “Merry Christmas” and was sent by British engineer Neil Papworth from his computer to British telecom Vodaphone executive Richard Jarvis’s mobile handheld phone. Although the mobile phone was able to display the text message, mobile phones did not have the capability to respond to text messages until 1993. Text messaging, technically referred to as short message service (SMS), had an average of 0.4 messages sent per month in the US in 1995. By 2011, the average number increased to 35 per person per day, with 81% of all mobile phone owners texting.
More about text messages:
- An estimated 3.7 billion people worldwide use text messaging, according to 2012 findings.
- Divorces can legally be conducted via text message in Malaysia.
- Finnish engineer Matti Makkonen is credited with developing the idea for text messaging, but he never patented the idea because he didn’t think it would be worthwhile and therefore, never made any money from it.