More than seven trillion SMS messages will be sent in 2011
Messaging is also more prevalent among younger subscribers, and as they replace older subscribers, messaging will get a further boost.
SMS has proven an enormous success ever since it started to show its first signs of traction in the early 1990s. Messaging includes four types of communication: SMS, MMS, mobile e-mail and Instant Messaging.
SMS is being increasingly regarded as something of a commodity by users, due to falling delivery costs and high competition, said the research firm.
Messaging is, increasingly, a tool for the enterprise as well as for individuals. However the rate of mobile phone adoption generally will gradually decline over the next five years, and growth in number of new customers starting to use messaging will likewise slow gradually.
Aapo Markkanen, industry analyst at ABI Research, said: “When these trends towards commoditization are combined with the wider adoption of mobile email and IM services, the revenue proportion of SMS and MMS against the market total is expected to decline.”
E-mail has the advantage of familiarity for many consumers, and, says Mr Markkanen, “Due to relatively low PC penetration in emerging regions, for many consumers across Latin America, Africa, and south Asia mobile devices will provide the primary screen for accessing e-mail. This won’t be restricted to smartphones: many companies are developing solutions to allow more basic handsets to handle e-mail.”
Neil Strother, practice director at ABI Research, said: “Mobile messaging has distinct advantages for companies communicating with their customers. It is universal, cost-effective and reliable, and most people have their phones with them and switched on most of the time.”
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