Text messaging in decline for the first time

Two users of iOS can avoid carriers' SMS services by sending iMessages instead.

(Credit: Apple)

If ever a story called for the use of an emoticon, this would be the one: Text messaging volume in the U.S. has declined for the first time ever, according to a new research report.

Regardless of whether the emoticon you’d assign to the story is a smiley or a sad face, it’s worth noting that after years as a growing communications medium, texting may be starting to falling victim to new market trends, at least insofar as it generates revenues for wireless carriers.

In its report looking at the U.S. mobile data market in the third quarter, Chetan Sharma wrote that although other western countries have already started to see falling revenue in the messaging segment, this was the first time that American carriers have both mirrored that revenue pattern and seen a drop in the total volume of SMS messages sent.

Chetan Sharma attributed the declines to “the rise of IP messaging” and the fact that “operators have been slow to evolve their strategies in the segment.” That means that services like Apple’s iMessage — a system that lets two iOS users send free SMS-like messages to each other — are cutting into … [Read more]

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