|A sleek, well designed Minitel terminal for French homes|
Most people have never heard of it. But the Minitel, developed in the 70's, launched in 1982 in France as a way for people to be connected. The computer-like machine was given to people for free by the French telephone service.
Not only was it an electronic phone book, but you could do e-commerce, check your bank account, check stocks, and chat. Need to book a vacation? Minitel. Need to check flight or train schedules? Minitel!
|Ooh-la-la, La Vie en Rose indeed!|
And the Minitel had chat rooms and services allowing people to be anonymous - thus developing into the "Minitel Rose" which allowed adult kinds of chats and services! Just as now on the web, this "Minitel Rose" earned LOTS of revenue!
|Minitel was convenient to use, right there where ever your phone was.|
|People could access Minitels in the Post Office and kiosks.|
One of the really remarkable things about the Minitel is that this existed long before public access to the internet existed. AOL was launched along with Prodigy and CompuServe around 1991 but didn't take hold until around 1994 - 12 years after the launch of Minitel.
|Used up until 2012, you could Facebook and Tweet on your Minitel.|
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