Still going strong after 20 years. I didn’t realise that while it has declined somewhat it is still quite healthy – “At its peak, around 1997, there were more than six million terminals in use, and payments worth about $750m passed through the system – roughly equivalent in size to the entire US e-commerce market at the time…” and 4.8m of the original terminals are still in use generating $500m of business. But that doesn’t count the 4m people who have downloaded an Internet-based emulator. And it has a future as well – by the end of the year Minitel will run on GPRS-enabled mobile phones. Ironically its low tech interface will make it ideal for phones and (though they don’t mention it) digital television.
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