Guy Lochhead, 29/08/10
An early (1979) form of viewdata/home computer/information exchange developed by the Post Office Research Laboratories. A set-top box allowed a regular television to become a transmitter of news, rudimentary e-mail and games. It is probably most famous for the fact that the Duke of Edinburgh’s mailbox was hacked. It also enabled the first home banking system, Homelink. The problem with Prestel was the hassle it took to be installed. Also, it was a paying service, whereas Ceefax etc. were free. It wasn’t very successful.