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Study says that chat apps are more popular than SMS

Posted: , by Michael H.

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Study says that chat apps are more popular than SMS
This day seemed inevitable. SMS has always been something of a troubled technology. It rose in popularity and became ubiquitous, but it was often saddled with exorbitant costs from carriers (especially for international SMS) and other limiting factors (for example, SMS is not unified in Japan, so users on different carriers either pay extremely high costs, or just communicate with e-mail.) Now that mobile carriers are more and more becoming simple data providers, chat services have overtaken SMS according to a new study.

The study was commissioned by the Financial Times. It found that SMS still leads in total number of users, and should generate $120 billion in revenue for carriers this year. But, chat apps has taken the lead in terms of message volume. So, even though more people have SMS (not surprising), people are more active using chat apps. 

Chat apps are expected to hit the mark of 41 billion messages per day, which would be double the rate of SMS messaging. WhatsApp recently said that its app not only had more users than Twitter, but processed more daily messages than Facebook. WhatsApp put its number at 18 billion messages per day compared to Facebook's 10 billion. So, it sounds like those two apps alone are making up the majority of chat app activity. 

source: FT (sub. req.) via The Verge

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posted on 29 Apr 2013, 19:12 1

1. FlushGordon (unregistered)

I haven't used SMS in ages

HEYWIRE and VIBER always served me well

posted on 29 Apr 2013, 19:16 6

2. jan25 (Posts: 470; Member since: 26 Feb 2012)

and that required a study?

posted on 30 Apr 2013, 00:25

8. WakaFlakaD (Posts: 526; Member since: 30 Apr 2011)

To better understand the market, yes

posted on 29 Apr 2013, 19:57 2

3. Timmehor (Posts: 599; Member since: 09 Mar 2013)

I still use SMS, am i missing out on something?!

posted on 29 Apr 2013, 20:14 1

4. JEverettnow (Posts: 228; Member since: 11 Mar 2013)

I use SMS. I feel like I am out of the loop. Everyone I know uses it too. Maybe its not an American thing. I do use GMOB 365 chat app for android though

posted on 29 Apr 2013, 20:26 1

5. InspectorGadget80 (unregistered)

I still use SMS. and I'm pretty sure that carriers will take away our UNLIMITED TEXT like they did our unlimited data

posted on 29 Apr 2013, 20:33

6. andynaija (Posts: 968; Member since: 08 Sep 2012)

I doubt they'll take away unlimited texting since it's not a HUGE priority like data services are

posted on 29 Apr 2013, 20:55 1

7. evarod48 (Posts: 154; Member since: 30 Oct 2012)

yeah, they don't really care about the texts and minutes like they used to. It's all about the data now

posted on 30 Apr 2013, 01:47

9. rizevnarastek (Posts: 349; Member since: 06 Sep 2012)

I use Google Talk all the time and looking forward to Babel.

posted on 30 Apr 2013, 01:56

10. Kreft (Posts: 84; Member since: 27 Dec 2012)

I don't get the point of messaging apps. Why? When text is free and unlimited. So I have to have the person actually use that app? So I have to convince a bunch of people or have different apps for different people? Besides fb message of course since everybody has fb.

posted on 30 Apr 2013, 05:44

11. Lifengineer (Posts: 44; Member since: 15 Dec 2011)


Well if I can chat the whole day in a couple of MBs should I be paying 0.39$ for an sms!?!?

(yes it is that expensive in our country!)

posted on 01 May 2013, 09:00

12. DrewMonroe (Posts: 21; Member since: 27 Feb 2012)

not in the Philippines I think. SMS is very popular here compared to call services. (the reason the country is dubbed "texting capital of the world". i hope someday online chatting will b popular as well in our smartphones not only with our computers.

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