The name Vodafone comes from 'voice data fone', chosen by the company to 'reflect the provision of voice and data services over mobile phones.'
In 1985 Racal Electronics launched Vodafone
1991: Racal Telecom was demerged from Racal Electronics as Vodafone Group
1999: Vodafone purchased AirTouch Communications, Inc. and changed its name to Vodafone AirTouch plc. The acquisition gave Vodafone a 35% share of Mannesmann, the largest German mobile network.
1999: Vodafone merged its U.S. wireless assets with those of Bell Atlantic Corp to form Verizon Wireless
2000: Mannesmann, which had purchased Orange (UK mobile operator), was acquired by Vodafone
2000: Reverts to its former name, Vodafone Group Plc