It’s 30 years since Australia’s first mobile phone call

Topic: Did you know, Guides, Industry News

Nearly everyone in Australia has a mobile phone these days. However, the first mobile phone in Australia in is only 30 years old.A very old phoneThe popular mobile device first emerged in Australia in 1981.  The first call was made on the country’s first mobile network – Telstra’s new Public Automatic Telephone System.At that time Telestra was known as Telecom, and the car handset device from where they made that very first call had a very straightforward name, simply – The Mobile Phone.What was the first mobile phone like?The first mobile phone weighed a hefty 14kg and consisted of a 45cm handset, a receiver stored in the boot of the car and an antenna on the roof: hardly what we’d refer to as a mobile phone today.Only the most well off Australians could afford it, as it cost $5,000. Although the phone was big, it didn’t have much memory; it was able to store only a maximum of 16 numbers. Obviously, sending an SMS with the device was unimaginable at the time.Unlike today’s mobile phones complete with MP3 players and hundreds of different call settings, the Telstra mobile phone alerted drivers of incoming calls by automatically honking the horn and flashing the headlights!Before and afterWhen the first commercially-available hand-held mobile appeared in 1983, phone coverage was limited to three mobile base stations in the greater Melbourne area and only 1000 people could use it at once.Much has changed since then. Today the Telstra network has more than 7400 base stations across Australia and 11 million users benefit from its service. SMS services and mobile internet were a revolution when they arrived…..who knows what the future will bring.