Orbitel Mobile Communications was established in 1987 in Basingstoke, UK, as a joint venture between Plessey Corporation and Racal Telecommunications with each owning a 50% share however, Racal eventually bought out Plessey to fully own the company. Orbitel was setup to manufacture and supply analogue mobile phones to Vodafone (also owned by Racal). However, they became heavily involved in research and development of GSM in their own right leading to the launch of tan independent range of GSM mobiles. In 1991 Racal Telecommunications announced that L M Ericsson was acquiring a 50% share in Orbitel for ÂŁ45 million. Ericsson subsequently took over the entire company in 1996 resulting in Orbitel becoming Ericsson Mobile Platforms.
At the Comex 1993 conference and exhibition in London, Orbitel announced their 902 Pocket Phone. It had a monochrome screen that could display 12 x 4 characters. The phone book allowed for up to 99 telephone numbers and associated names to be stored in the SIM card and a further 100 entries in the phone's memory. A call register kept details of the most recent 5 dialled calls and call timers recorded the duration of the last call and a cumulative total. The Orbitel 902 could also receive, but not send SMS text messages.