Happy 20th Born Day to SMS (text messaging)

The first SMS was sent as a Christmas greeting on December 3, 1992. Now we send 8 trillion text messages a year.

Neil Papworth, a software programmer from Reading, UK sent the first SMS (text message) in 1992.

“Since mobile phones didn’t yet have keyboards, I typed the message out on a PC. It read ‘Merry Christmas’ and I sent it to Richard Jarvis of Vodafone, who was enjoying his office Christmas party at the time,” said Papworth.

Neil Papworth

Aged 22, Papworth was part of a team developing a Short Messaging Service Centre at Vodafone’s site in Newbury, Berkshire. The idea was to use text as an in-company paging service: “We thought SMS was a clever way for a company’s staff to send simple messages to one another. I do get a kick out of being called a ‘legend’, once a year” he said, “even if at the time the achievement was nothing remarkable , I was just doing my job. It’s been quite amazing to watch SMS grow from a simple way for secretaries to page their managers to all these innovative applications that rely on text messaging – voting on reality shows, tracking vehicles or packages and telling you when a plane has landed.”

It took seven years from Papworth’s festive greeting for texting to take off, let alone spawn that whole new style of linguistics from LOL to L8TR and other trunc8ed spellings and acronyms such as #GWOP that have become universally understood. UK mobile phone companies believed people wouldn’t want to type in a message when they could simply speak. But in 1999 rival networks started to allow customers to swap SMS while also introducing pay-as-you-go – allowing everyone access to communication technology.

Checkout some text lingo below:


Acronyms and shorthands of SMS

plaz please.

alol actually laughing out loud

CUZ because

IDK I don’t know

LMAO laughing my ass off

**//i wink wink, nudge nudge

2moro tomorrow

9 or PIR parent is close by

99 parent no longer around

FF friends forever

L8R Later, as in see you later.

Poof goodbye

WYP what’s your problem?

ZZZ bored.

source: Guardian

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