Chairman of Telecom Éireann Michael Smurfit launches the new Eircell mobile telephone system in the National Concert Hall in Dublin.
Minister for Communications Jim Mitchell made the inaugural telephone call to RTÉ broadcaster Pat Kenny who was out and about on the streets of Dublin when he took the call. A good humoured chat about Pat Kenny’s best dressed man award of the year ensued. When the minister asked how an interviewer in RTÉ can afford to be best dressed man, Pat Kenny replied
Well it's quite simple really minister, in RTÉ we can dress for half price because we only have to dress from the waist up.
Eircell is based on a cellular principle and involves reusing radio channels. Prices starts at £1400 plus VAT, but the phones can be leased. Telecom Éireann director Chris Lowe also sees the new technology being used by businessmen, sales representatives, in the medical field or just for anyone on the move, needing to be contactable.
The system is currently only covers the greater Dublin area, but if the demand is there it will be extended to a fully national service within four or five years.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 11 December 1985.