Latest in Cellphone

Image credit:

The 'father of SMS,' Matti Makkonen, dies at 63

5 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

It's a sad day in the cellphone world. Matti Makkonen, widely considered the "father of SMS," has died from illness at the age of 63. The Finnish creator pitched the concept of text messaging over cellular networks in 1984 and helped get the ball rolling on the technology in its earliest days. He was quick to downplay his involvement and saw SMS as a "joint effort" between many people (Friedham Hillebrand developed the 160-character format in 1985, for example), but much of the initial credit belongs to him.

Suffice it to say that Makkonen's work has spread far and wide. SMS is starting to decline as instant messaging apps take over, but it's still ubiquitous -- how many people do you know who would much rather get a text message than a phone call? Twitter's roots are in SMS (hence that 140-character limit), and the tech is still considered vital for communication in areas where mobile internet access is too expensive, heavily censored or both. We'll miss you, Matti.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
5 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

The Morning After: FDA clears five-minute lab-in-a-box COVID-19 test

The Morning After: FDA clears five-minute lab-in-a-box COVID-19 test

View
'Star Trek: Voyager' gets an unofficial 4K remaster thanks to AI

'Star Trek: Voyager' gets an unofficial 4K remaster thanks to AI

View
BMW will discontinue its iconic i8 hybrid sports car in April

BMW will discontinue its iconic i8 hybrid sports car in April

View
Tesla starts delivering the Model Y

Tesla starts delivering the Model Y

View
Square Enix will ship 'Final Fantasy VII Remake' early to some countries

Square Enix will ship 'Final Fantasy VII Remake' early to some countries

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr