FFE Magazine

Move over SMS, apps on the Rise

by FFE EU News Staff


Study shows free messaging apps are taking over SMS.

Study shows free messaging apps are taking over SMS.


Are the days of text messages gone for good? According to the latest trends in mobile use, the traditional format of mobile messaging may be on its way out of popularity in Britain.


Professional services network giant Deloitte estimated that the number of Short Message Service (SMS) or text messages sent in the UK dropped from 152 billion in 2012 to 145b in 2013. Meanwhile, messages sent via internet-based services surged from 57b in 2012 to 160b in 2013.


Instant messaging service gained a footing beginning 2006 in the UK with the introduction of Blackberry’s BBM feature. Soon, Apple followed suit with iMessage and a slew of other independent apps like WhatsApp, Line and WeChat increased competition in the market.


Additional functions like photo sharing, games and digital stickers have pushed instant messaging innovation to new heights, causing more of the younger generation of mobile users to shift from SMS to apps like Snapchat.


While trends cannot deny the popularity of instant messaging, Deloitte revealed that SMS still outperforms the former in terms of revenue. The company said that SMS generates 50 times more profit than instant messaging and expects to raise £50 billion for 2014.


The format of instant messaging hampers the growth of the market: unlike SMS which is a standard feature in all phones, instant messaging users must have the same app installed in their phones to communicate. With its huge number of users, Facebook is trying to dominate the instant messaging market. But the social media company faces issues with migrating users.


Meanwhile, mobile phone users over 55 are still loyal to SMS, turning text messaging into a domain ruled by the older demographic.



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