The History of the Text Message

6 June 2014

For the average person, text messaging is part of everyday life so it’s hard to think of a time without text messages and instant communication with friends, family, colleagues, clients and customers.

In this blog we explore the history of the humble text message, and why it’s become the so important in everyday life.

  • The first ever SMS message was on 3 December 1992, when Neil Papworth, a 22-year-old test engineer used his PC to text a friend “Merry Christmas”.
  • In 1994 Radiolinja (a Finnish GSM operator) became the first network to provide personal mobile to mobile SMS text messaging.
  • In 1995 another network (Telecom Finland) also started to offer text messages as part of their service, so for the first time, there was cross-network SMS functionality.
  • In 1996 Omnipoint Communications offered American’s the chance to use SMS. After this revalation, Omnipoint Communications were the first to offer texting between the US and the rest of the world

Since then, we haven’t looked back, as text messaging began to grow across the globe to become the most widely used mobile data service (with approximately 80% of all Europeans using SMS).


As mobiles have become more advanced over the years, the capabilities of SMS and SMS marketing has advanced. Businesses are now able to send URL links within their campaigns and track the success of each message. Technology has allowed us to send bulk messages for marketing or communications purposes, allowing for a streamlined, cost effective strategy to improve engagement and leads.

At TextAnywhere we offer a wide range of different SMS products, or every objective and need. If you would like to speak to one of our Customer Service team members, please call 08451 221 302.

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