Tag Archives: prestel

Prextend was an improvement of the graphics on Prestel. Colours and font size could now be changed without including an empty character (just like with Minitel/Antiope). via

Picture Prestel was an experimental feature of the videotex service Prestel. It was demonstrated in 1980, while Prestel was already struggling to attract users. Meanwhile, videotex inventions with better graphics started to emerge. Telidon and NAPLPS had vector graphics, Minitel had better textmode graphics, and CAPTAIN had photographics.

Picture Prestel was never really meant to be implemented, at least not until the end of the 80s.

Images from here and here (a great video explainer).

Microtex 666 (1986-1989) was a videotex service on the Australian network Viatel, where it was the only service to cater specifically to computer users in 1986. It featured telesoftware (downloadable software for free or at a cost), lists of BBSs (not on videotex), programming resources, the turnbased multiplayer game Great Galactic Conflict (updated weekly) and a bulletin board called Blackboard. While other Viatel boards were apparently moderated by hand, Microtex automatically removed obscenities and updated the pages every 15 minutes during peak hours.

The brand was also used for a hardware/software bundle for dial-up services (videotex, BBS, etc). C64, DOS, Apple II and BBC Micro were supported.

Source: Viatel Directory and Magazine Vol 4, 1986.

In November 1981 in UK, Kenneth Baker, the Minister for Information Technology, proclaimed 1982 as “Information Technology Year, IT-82.” to support for the use of IT, like teletext and viewdata. Via

Prestel British videotex system

How does Prestel works? by Logica / BVT Marketing.

Prestel, cover from 1982

Prestel capture screens

Prestel, screengrabs from 1984
Here you can view the graphics as text.

Prestel (abbrev. from press telephone), the brand name for the UK Post Office’s Viewdata technology, was an interactive videotex system developed during the late 1970s and commercially launched in 1979.
Terminal/demonstration at the National Museum of Science & Industry