Text Messaging Featured Article

Text Messaging Losing Its Luster, Report Notes

January 11, 2012

Text messaging looks like it’s on its way out, or so trends reporting on the matter are finding.

It seems text messaging is the standard form of communication these days, so much that T9 phones are quickly becoming legacy equipment as they are replaced by their QWERTY counterparts. Even if you don’t have a smartphone, chances are your phone has a full keyboard just for using SMS, or short messaging service.

However, as social media grows in popularity, it serves as another means of communication that have caused text messages to decline.

According to a Forbes report, there was a significant decline in text messages, particularly in countries that seemed to have been the earlier adopters of SMS, Hong Kong and Finland.

In the report, Forbes says that on Christmas Eve, 8.5 million texts were sent via Sonera, Finland’s main mobile carrier, which is down from 10.9 million texts on Christmas Eve the previous year. This is, apparently, a pretty significant drop.

In Hong Kong, SMS was down by 14 percent on Christmas day.

It’s because users are moving towards IP-based communications, which have many advantages of SMS but without the limitations of SMS.

“The ambitious new messaging plans and more organic Facebook/Twitter support of both Apple (News - Alert) and Google could be the big threat for operator earnings growth in a year or two,” writes Forbes’ Tero Kuittinen. “As much as 20 percent of carrier earnings are derived from text-messaging.”

Alternately, the Pew (News - Alert) Research Center found a median of 75 percent of cell phone owners in 21 countries surveyed say they use their phones to text. Text messaging is more popular among cell phone owners in two of the poorest nations surveyed such as Indonesia and Kenya, whereas it is less popular in developed countries like the US, Britain and Germany. People in wealthier nations use their cell phones more for social networking because of better Internet access, the survey found.

Text messaging saw its hay-day back in 2007 as it was the it-technology to replace e-mail as a form a communication. Back then, Forrester Research said 35 percent of cellphone users sent or received text messages, with 76 percent of 18 to 24 year olds using it. The popularity of text messaging in the US resulted in more than 158 billion messages sent in 2006, which was a 95 percent increase over 2005.

Text messaging may be on the decline, however, it still has its place as a substitute for voice calls in situations where voice communication is impossible or undesirable.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO East 2012, taking place Jan. 31-Feb. 3 2012, in Miami, FL. ITEXPO (News - Alert) offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. For more information on registering for ITEXPO registration click here.

Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO. Follow us on Twitter.

Michelle Amodio is a TMCnet contributor. She has helped promote companies and groups in all industries, from technology to banking to professional roller derby. She holds a bachelor's degree in Writing from Endicott College and currently works in marketing, journalism, and public relations as a freelancer.

Edited by Stefanie Mosca
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