Intergalactic Communication: The Cost of E.T.’s Call Home

The Cost of E.T.’s Call Home

When you think of famous phone calls, there’s one that inevitably comes to mind. Steven Spielberg’s E.T. spends the majority of his eponymous movie attempting to make contact with this home planet, Brodo Asogi, uttering the famous line “E.T. phone home”.

In the film, the loveable alien constructs his own intergalactic telephone, but we’ve always wondered, how much would it cost?

Thankfully, international telecommunications provider, Toll-Free Forwarding, have done the hard work for us and recently undertook research to estimate the cost of E.T.’s call home. They looked at international call rates to every country in the world from the film’s location (California) using AT&T (the biggest phone supplier for California at the time of the film) and calculated an average cost per distance based on each country’s distance from the area. This cost was then applied to the distance of E.T.’s home planet, which we know from the film’s distinctive posters is “3,000,000 light-years” away.

The estimated cost? $76 quadrillion. Now that’s a substantial phone bill.

The research has been visualized as an interactive, space traveling graphic passing some of the galaxy’s other famous landmarks which you can view here.

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