Mobile phones are a huge part of our lives now but it’s surprising at some of the things we don’t know about them. Take a look below for 15 interesting and fun facts about mobile phones.
1. According to GSMA real-time intelligence data, there are over 5.13 Billion people with mobile devices worldwide! There’s nearly as many mobile phone subscriptions in the world as there are people (7.53 billion as of 2017).
2. It’s reported that on average, over 8000 Apple iPhones are sold every hour, on every day of the year. Thats a staggering 72 million handsets a year!
3. There are more mobile phones than home computers – the ratio is around 5 to 1.
4. In 1985, the first mobile phone call made in the UK by the comedian Ernie Wise. He called from London to the Vodafone head office in Newbury. The first mobile call was made by Motorola inventor Martin Cooper on April 3rd, 1973. He called a rival manufacturer to break the news they’d lost the race to develop the first mobile phone.
5. Surprisingly, the most common use for a mobile is not making phone calls or sending texts, but checking the time.
6. It was over 25 years ago on December 3rd, 1992 that the first text messaging was sent, when British engineer Neil Papworth used his computer to wish a “Merry Christmas” to Richard Jarvis, of Vodafone, on his Orbitel 901 mobile phone.
7. Emoticons have been around long before the mobile phone – since the 1800’s.
8. As smartphone users turn to instant messaging apps such as WhatsApp and Snapchat, old fashioned text messaging is falling. Last year it was estimated 7 billion less were sent, but the overall figure is still huge – 145 Billion text messages were sent in 2013! The UK alone was sending more than 1 billion texts a month by 2001.
9. Its suggested that around one-quarter of older smartphone owners never download a single app.
10. 99% of all mobile malware is targeted at Android users.
11. During 2007, 600 million mobile phones were made in China which accounted for over 50% of the global production.
12. Don’t talk and drive – reactions are a third slower when chatting on a handheld mobile than when under the influence of alcohol.
13. The average mobile phone has around 18 times more bacteria on them than a toilet’s flush handle – don’t forget to wash your hands!
14. If your mobile phone’s GPS tracks itself going over 1,200 mph at an altitude higher than 18,000 meters, it’s legally required to deactivate the tracking as it probably means it is being used to guide an intercontinental ballistic missile. Some manufacturers apply this limit only when both speed and altitude limits are reached, while other manufacturers disable tracking when either limit is reached. In the latter case, this causes some devices to refuse to operate in very high altitude balloons.
15. In 2012, a French woman received a phone bill of truly astronomical proportions. Her monthly bill had apparently come to €11,721,000,000,000,000 (£9.4 quadrillion). Amazingly Bouygues Telecom were initially unwilling to admit their error, and offered to set up a schedule of instalments to repay the ‘debt’, a figure which is nearly 6000 times France’s GDP.