Japanese customers get cross-carrier SMS
The carriers announced their intention to connect their SMS services in 2009, but it has taken this long to implement. And, in that time, they've missed out on a large source of revenue. With voice services losing popularity, and fixed-rate data plans becoming the norm, text messaging is often the bread and butter of wireless carriers.
But even with cross-carrier SMS, Japanese consumers will most likely stick with email. NTT Docomo, for example, has more than 50% of its customers on a fixed-rate data plan. So those customers will likely stick with their email services, which have become the norm for text-based messaging.
And the preference for email isn't limited to smartphones. Most feature phones have built-in email clients that users depend on for their short messages. So why are they bothering to intertwine their SMS services? The two-year implementation is proof enough that it wasn't a priority. Perhaps they just feel obliged to comply with the global standard, even if it won't get much use.
source: The Japan Times via Textually
1. CPGustafson511 (Posts: 4; Member since: 06 Jan 2011)
Crazy that they haven't had this before.
2. harimura (Posts: 10; Member since: 14 Jun 2011)
Have been a Docomo customer for over 12 years and have used e-mail for almost the whole time. I only use SMS to keep in touch with family overseas and even that I have only been able to do for the last couple of years..
In Japan, SMS was mainly associated with spam so most people disabled it so I really don't understand why they are allowing cross carrier SMS now. As the article says, most people use e-mail and have unlimited data plans.
5. lolz (unregistered)
If SMS "was" associated with spam, what is then email associated with?
7. downphoenix (Posts: 2891; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)
no kidding. Here in the US its the other way around.
8. harimura (Posts: 10; Member since: 14 Jun 2011)
Users have a lot of control over what e-mail they do or don't receive. Most cases you can set your phone only to receive phone based e-mail and then allow certain domains you want to receive.
6. ibap (Posts: 735; Member since: 09 Sep 2009)
Now on Android, I miss the (old) WM capability to store SMS like email in folders. There is one Android app that does that, but it causes other issues on my phone. I wouldn't mind it being more email-like.