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Matti Makkonen, pioneer of SMS technology, died

Jul 1, 2015 13:03 IST

Matti Makkonen, the man responsible for conceiving the idea of short messaging service (SMS) technology, died on 30 June 2015 following a brief illness. He was 63.

This Finnish tech pioneer pitched the idea of SMS messaging to two colleagues in a pizzeria while at a telecommunications conference in 1984. However, it was on 3 December 1992 that the first text message was sent from a computer to a mobile device via the Vodafone network.

Unfortunately, Makkonen was not able to patent the invention of SMS messaging as it was only a conceived idea back in 1984. Though, he won The Economist's Innovation Award in 2008 in the computing and telecommunications category for his work on SMS.

In 2000, Makkonen joined Nokia Networks Professional Services as the units director, and was the CEO of Finnet Oy from 2003 through 2005. Earlier, he was the President of the mobile communication unit Telecom Finland in 1989.

Born in Suomussalmi, Makkonen graduated as an electrical engineer from the Oulu technical college in 1976.

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Who: Matti Makkonen

What: Died

When: 30 June 2015

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