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It’s 30 years since the UK’s first mobile phone call was made

Luke Johnson

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4G

As we look forward to the New Year, it’s also time to dwell on the past as today marks the 30th anniversary of the UK’s first ever mobile phone call.

Birthing an era of rapid technological advancement, the call, placed on January 1 1985 was the first to be placed on British soil using a commercial mobile network.

Made using a Transportable Vodafone VT1 phone, the term ‘mobile’ was used lightly given the handset’s 4.7kg weight and whopping £16,50 price tag.

So, what were the words immortalised by this landmark moment in human advancement? Well, sadly it wasn’t anything spectacular.

With the call seeing Michael Harrison, son of Vodafone’s first chairman Sir Earnest Harrison, phone his father, he simply uttered: “Hi Dad, it’s Mike. Happy New Year. This is the first ever call on a UK mobile network.

While Vodafone was the UK’s first mobile network, this monopoly-based dominance didn’t last for long.

Just nine days later on January 10, Cellnet (now O2) was launched.

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Despite these humble beginnings, the mobile phone market now dominates the UK tech scene.

Recent figures, as reported by the Mirror, show there are now more than 83 million active mobile subscriptions in the UK, with 16 per cent of the population shunning landlines to live a mobile-only existence.

What is you favourite phone of the past 30 years? The iPhone, that beloved Nokia 3310 or something else? Let us know via the comments section below.

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