Britain’s royal family adhered to the age-old custom of placing a proclamation on headed palace notepaper behind the famous iron railings to confirm the arrival of the third in line to the throne.
However, Clarence House sent an almost simultaneous stream of Twitter postings to introduce the duke and duchess of Cambridge’s son to the world. And just an hour later the queen and the duke of Edinburgh responded to the birth on their official account.
“The Queen and Prince Philip are delighted at the news of the birth of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s baby,” it said.
The birth sparked a frenzy of excitement on the micro- blogging site which spread rapidly across the world.
“The scale of the global conversation was immediately apparent,” Twitter’s Steve Summers said.
Since that announcement, there have been over 2m mentions of the Royal baby’s arrival on the site, with #RoyalBaby being used more than 900,000 times alone.
A spike in conversation on Twitter came at 8.37pm, in the minutes following the initial announcement, with more than 25,300 tweets per minute.
But it failed to generate the same flurry of activity on social media as Andy Murray’s Wimbledon win earlier this month which amassed 120,000 tweets per minute, or the election of Pope Francis earlier this year which sparked 132,000 tweets per minute.
A spokesman for the website said the reaction to the baby’s birth may not have reached its peak, with a surge in tweets anticipated when the duke and duchess announce a name.
* Michelle Obama: Congratulations to The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on the birth of their son! Being a parent is the best job of all.
* Joan Rivers: Congratulations to Kate & William on the birth of their baby boy! So relieved that his name won’t include the words Ivy or Apple.
* Cheryl Cole: Congratulations to William and Kate!! So happy they have a healthy baby and everyone is good. Can’t wait to see him now #Royalbaby
* Jack Osbourne: EPIC!!!! a new prince was born. its like real life Game of Thrones #royalbaby
* Ellen DeGeneres: It’s a boy! So happy for my cousin Kate and the future King of England!
* Perez Hilton: I think I’m probably not the only one who started crying today thinking about #Diana. Smiling from beyond!
* William Shatner: So pleased to hear that William and Kate had a baby boy. Long live the future king. MBB