30 years of mobile telephony in Poland, that is, from Nokia to iPhone

Three decades of Polish telephony have changed the way we perceive cell phones. Which operator was the first choice of Poles? Who did they make the first call to? You will find out in the report below

Mobile phones are devices full of contradictions. On the one hand, no one will be offended if I call them man’s best friends. They serve us today for practically everything, from contacts, through work, to various entertainments. On the other hand, with the wrong approach, they can play the role of the greatest enemy, from which it is impossible to part even at the family table and at social gatherings. However, the fact is that, whatever their motivations, the Poles cannot live without telephones. Over the past 30 years, the mode and frequency of their use has changed dramatically. It is on the occasion of the thirtieth anniversary of the arrival of mobile telephony on the Polish market that Publicon has prepared a report on the changes, motivations and specificity of the use of mobile phones.

Polish mobile telephony after three decades

The study was conducted on a group of 607 respondents aged 18 to 65 and over, from all regions of Poland. When Centertel began operations on June 18, 1992, phones were a status symbol beyond the reach of the average bread eater. Buying a mobile phone was therefore a big event that opened up access to a whole new way of building relationships. Which device did the Poles choose first? Well, no surprise here.

Nokia, the icon of Polish telephony

My first phone – and chances are your reader will too – was the Nokia 3310. The device, which today is just a meme, was what the iPhone is today. The Finnish manufacturer was once the undisputed market leader and it shows in the search results.

Source: Publicon

More than 33% of respondents – both in the female and male group – answered that their first phone came from the stable of Nokia. Samsung and Motorola were in second place, trampling on Nokia’s heels, taking advantage of the Finnish brand’s reluctance to return phones. Nokia dominates all age groups, starting with 18 and ending with users 65 and older.

Source: Publicon

Poles’ favorite operators

A mobile phone would be nothing without an operator. Thanks to the support of foreign investors, Centertel managed to create the necessary infrastructure in 1992 and, despite the very high cell prices of that time, built up a large customer base. The machine, however, only started in earnest after Era and Plus entered the market. The competition drove down the prices of the devices, thanks to which more Poles were able to afford the luxury of owning a mobile phone. It’s Plus that respondents most often list as their top carrier, but surprisingly the differences between the other candidates aren’t as great as in the case of device brand.

Source: Publicon

T-Mobile (19.9%) and Era (18.6%) top the women’s group. Orange (20%) was second in the male portion of respondents and Era (18.6%) was third. Plus is most popular in the 25-34 age group, being the top choice for 27.7% of respondents. Plus isn’t a leader only in the 65+ age group, in which respondents pointed to Era and T-Mobile.

Source: Publicon

Ok, but cell phones were created to “connect people”, right? So, who did the Poles make their first call to?

Phone call from mom

In this case, the data is overwhelming. No less than 41.3% of women and 40% of men said they made the first call from a mobile phone to their mother. The husband/wife category comes second with a score of 18% (women) and 16.6 (men).

Source: Publicon

Nearly half of respondents in the 25-34 age group decided to call their mother for the first time.

Source: Publicon

The possibility of introducing conversations over a distance is of course the basic function of a mobile phone, but today the devices have become interdisciplinary companions in everyday life, whose usefulness goes far beyond the simple call. . So what do Poles use their phones for the most?

Communication always in the foreground

Poles indicated that making calls was the most common activity performed with the use of a mobile phone. It was followed by the widely understood use of the Internet and SMS messages on the third. To my surprise, social networks only come in fourth place, with a reference to the women’s group (49.5%).

Source: Publicon

Interesting conclusions can be drawn from a detailed analysis of the age of each category. It would seem that the older generation has a distance with technology, but it was the 65+ age group that had the highest percentage of mobile app usage (21.6%).

Source: Publicon

Watching movies on your phone never appeared in the 55-64 age bracket, and mobile gaming was completely dominated by the younger generation (42.3%). However, this does not change the fact that even in this group, interviews were the respondents’ first choice.

connect people

After three decades of mobile telephony in Poland, the first thing that comes to mind is universality. Research by ISBnews shows that as many as 96.9 Poles over the age of 15 have used a mobile phone. As Szymon Sikorski, CEO of Publicon rightly pointed out, thanks to the cells we have “burned with technology”, becoming cyborgs of sorts. We communicate remotely, we always have “extra memory” and knowledge at hand. Three decades have changed the way we perceive phones, their look, their capabilities and their accessibility, but the overarching problem remains the same: communication. Despite the fact that Nokia is only a shadow of its former glory, the slogan “connecting people” remains timeless despite the passage of time.

Stock image form Depositphotos

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