Messaging Via Chat Apps Overtook Daily SMS Rate In 2012

It’s not as bad as you think, mobile networks.

Messaging Via Chat Apps Overtook Daily SMS Rate In 2012

Sending messages via chat apps has overtaken SMS for the first time. A survey from Informa reports that, in 2012, 19 billion chat messages were sent per day, compared to 17.6 billion SMS. The news is not good for mobile operators, who will suffer some loss of revenue. But does it spell the death of the SMS, as the EU’s digital commissioner Neelie Kroes tweeted earlier this morning? Probably not.

The survey, which was commissioned by the Financial Times, shows that SMS numbers are growing alongside free mobile messaging apps. While smartphone users, primarily in the developed world, are using apps such as Viber and WhatsApp–Nokia highlighted this app’s relevance with its WhatsApp-featured smartphone last week–as well as services such as Apple’s iMessage and BlackBerry messenger, developing countries are using SMS to communicate.

With individuals’ inboxes becoming so saturated with unread messages, businesses are also looking at the power of SMS to get their (text) message across. Informa has projected that by 2014, 50 billion chat-app messages will be sent, compared to 21 billion SMS.

Do you use chat apps to get your message across? And if so, which medium has it been at the expense of–email or SMS? Answers in the comments below, please.

[Image by Flickr user MarkKoeber]

About the author

My writing career has taken me all round the houses over the past decade and a half--from grumpy teens and hungover rock bands in the U.K., where I was born, via celebrity interviews, health, tech and fashion in Madrid and Paris, before returning to London, where I now live. For the past five years I've been writing about technology and innovation for U.S.