The GSM Association (GSMA, or Groupe Speciale Mobile Association) is an association of mobile operators and related companies devoted to supporting the standardising, deployment and promotion of the GSM mobile telephone system. The GSM Association was formed in 1995. The GSMA organises the largest annual event in the mobile industry, the GSMA Mobile World Congress, in addition to smaller, targeted events GSMA Mobile World Congress Shanghai and the GSMA Mobile 360 Series. The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide, uniting nearly 800 operators with more than 250 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset and device makers, software companies, equipment providers and Internet companies, as well as organisations in adjacent industry sectors. It traces its history back to the Bonn declaration by the Ministers of Germany, UK, France and Italy in May 1987 that called for the drawing up of an MOU to be ready by September 1987 for the signature of European mobile operators. The GSM MOU was the idea of Stephen Temple, a senior official in the UK Department of Trade and Industry. Thirteen mobile network operators from twelve countries signed the GSM MoU on 7 September 1987 in Copenhagen. The original copy of the GSM MOU is held by the GSM Association and was described later by Sir Christopher Gent, former CEO of Vodafone, as the most important document in mobile radio history. The “GSM MoU Association” was created in 1995 by the signatories of the GSM MOU. called it “one of the most powerful trade associations in the world, lobbying governments on everything from tax policy to pricing strategy”.

Richard Goodwin

Richard Goodwin has been working as a tech journalist for over 10 years. He has written for Den of Geek, Fortean Times, IT PRO, PC Pro, ALPHR, and many other technology sites. He is the editor and owner of KnowYourMobile.

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