Wednesday, May 18

The first SMS in history has a price: Vodafone auctions it for… 107,000 euros!


NFTs have been a revolution in the last year and have shaped a new way of conceiving art and property in the online world. Tweets, viral videos or even memes have been sold and now the telephone company Vodafone has decided to put something unique up for auction: the first SMS or text message in history.

Date December 3, 1992

It was sent on December 3, 1992 by the operator Vodafone and almost three decades later it has been sold at an auction in Paris as a digital code for the amount of 107,000 euros, according to the Aguttes sales house. The auctioned item was presented on a tablet and purchased by a Canadian who works in the technology sector whose identity has not come to light.

“Merry Christmas”, the 12 most expensive characters in the history of SMS

NFT Vodafone

The buyer has acquired a digital replica, as well as the only digital communication protocol that transmitted this text message 29 years ago. The original SMS consists of 12 characters and said: “Merry Christmas” (“Merry Christmas” in English). It was sent by the programmer Neil Papworth who worked at the operator and was addressed to his friend Richard Jarvis who had an Orbitel 901 phone, just when he was at the company’s Christmas party.

It is true that it was sent in 1994 but its origin dates back to a few years earlier, specifically in 1984, when the Finnish engineer Matti Makkonen had the idea of ​​this messaging system at an informal lunch. Several countries began to work on a global messaging system for mobile networks (GSM).

Makkonen’s idea was accepted by his working group and Friedhelm Hillebrand proposed an initial protocol and established the character limit at 160. For the team, this extension was enough to be able to communicate and at the same time adapt to the size of the screens at the time.

Initially, SMS were designed so that the operators themselves could send messages to their customers, it was not intended for communication between users. These messages were called mobile terminated-short message (MT-SM). Later, Nokia took care to develop the system we know today, known as mobile originated-short message (MO-SM) and allowed the sending of SMS between users for the first time.

It was not until 1999 that this paid messaging service was definitively launched as a new source of income for operators in addition to calls. In addition, the exchange of SMS also began to be allowed between users of different telephone companies, which marked a before and after in the new forms of communication worldwide. Now, this trend of selling this type of NFT-type relics and making good use of them is being followed, as has been verified with this SMS from Vodafone. What will be the next thing that surprises us and hits the market?



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