OnRecycle Blog
Mobile Phone Turns 40

Mobile Phone Turns 40

The beloved mobile phone turns 40 today. And my, doesn’t it just get better with age?

On the 3rd of April 1973 Martin Cooper, a senior engineer at Motorola phoned his deadliest rival Joel Engel, who was head of research at Bell Labs and also committed to developing the first mobile phone, announcing that he was speaking on “a ‘real’ cellular telephone”.

40 years on and the mobile phone population is set to overtake the human one within the next twelve months. (Does anyone else find this slightly disturbing? Ensure we're not over run by the rascals by recycling your old handset with us here at OnRecycle).

To celebrate the life of the mobile so far, we have compiled a list of random yet fascinating mobile phone facts:

  • The first mobile phone to go on sale (the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X otherwise known as 'The Brick’) weighed 785g, 11 times more than the weight of the thinnest smartphone ever, Samsung's Ultra Edition 8.4 Z370 at 71g.
  • The origin of the infamous Nokia ringtone is… a 1902 composition by Spanish classical guitarist and composer Francisco Tarrega, called Gran Vals. At one point, it was estimated that the Nokia tune was heard about 1.8 billion times per day worldwide. Good old Francisco never would have imagined that, would he?!
  • The first text message was sent by 22-year-old engineer Neil Papworth on 3 December 1992. He sent a ‘Merry Christmas’ text to a worker at Vodafone.
  • The first ever picture snapped from a phone camera was taken by entrepreneur Philippe Kahn. It was of his new born daughter which he shared with thousands of friends and associates from around the world.
  • The most expensive telephone number ever was bought in 2006 by an anonymous Qatari bidder. It was 666-6666 and it went for 10 million Qatari Riyals (then £1.46m). Tuuu, more money than sense, eh!?
  • The bestselling mobile phone of all time is… 2005’s Nokia 1110. A whopping great 250 million units were sold!

There you go; we do hope you enjoyed these little nuggets of mobile info. If you did, then please head over and like us on Facebook :). Ta!