Why text messaging is here to stay

1130221 autosave v1 2 what does the future hold for text messaging color

Last week the text message celebrated its 20th birthday. Since 1992, it’s grown into an essential part of our everyday lives. How long it will last is the big question. Recent news from Chetan Sharma says that the service, while still 70 billion messages a month strong, saw a serious decline in the last few months, likely due to new services like Facebook Messenger and Apple’s iMessage. So the question is posed: What is the future of the text message? Does it lie with SMS or Internet messaging programs?

why text messages wont die textingstats

Some believe that the SMS text isn’t going anywhere. Bill Tancer of Experian Marketing Services is one of them. As far as he’s concerned, the text message is the gold standard and we’re in no hurry to abandon it. Tancer told us that recent research shows that the future of our market relies heavily on the young, and that they haven’t stopped text messaging, but they are using a number of new services. Apple’s iMessage service, Google Talk, Kik, and Facebook Messenger are all major options for mobile communication just like the text message. They’ve all made some inroads against traditional texting, but they remain stuck against an important element: ubiquity. Texting is available on every phone, by every wireless carrier made, by every phone manufacturer, running every operating system. It’s everywhere

No service currently carries the same ubiquity as the text message, and that the ability to send messages to any phone number is still an unmatched feature compared to the text message’s closest competition.

“Users will always gravitate to a richer experience,” Tancer said, but “SMS is the backbone” of our mobile experience, and it won’t be going away until other services become much more relevant to the majority of mobile users.

Alex Quilici, CEO of YouMail, agrees. Just like the phone call, the text message is ubiquitous because of its relation to the phone number, and the two are still fundamental parts of the mobile experience. To compete, Alex states that new services and technology should be”optimizing around

,” and offer a niche experience that supplements it. The real future for messaging as a whole, he thinks, is about finding the right method for the right moment, and figuring out which tool in your mobile arsenal you want to use to send a message: a phone call, a YouMail voice message, an iMessage, or a text message.

hands on with ios 5 imessage 2Still, it’s hard to ignore services such as Apple’s iMessage, which continues to grow rapidly. iMessage alone is sending an impressive 1 billion text messages a month among 140 million users – a noticeable dent on the 70 billion traditional text messages sent. A big reason behind this is probably the fact that iPhones are inclined to use iMessage over traditional text messaging when communicating with other iPhones, iPads, and iMacs, and Apple’s gradual movement to encourage users of their new service is going to exponential increase the prevalence of the software in the coming year, especially when it looks just like a regular text message on the iPhone.

Kik thinks it can defeat the text message and all competitors by simply being better. “Kik adds value that SMS and competitors do not,” a representative said in an e-mailed statement. The features that Kik offers including read receipts, comprehensive group messaging, and HTML5-based Kik Card technology. According to Kik’s site, Kik Cards “let you do even more with Kik” like “search for and send YouTube videos, find and share images, and create sketches.” 

With more 30 million registered users and an impressive 100,000 new ones joining every day, it’s hard to ignore the momentum that Kik has. It, along with iMessage and Facebook Message all have increasing relevance in day to day communication. Despite this though, Experian’s data strongly suggests that instead of replacing SMS texting, we’re all just using texts along with a bunch of new alternatives. Why choose when you can have them all? 

Despite all that iMessage, Kik, Facebook, and YouMail offer, the text message leaves its 20th birthday with a healthy chance it could hit a ripe old age. Its growth may not be what it used to, but as we all weave and bob through each new texting competitor that comes and goes, we always know that we can come back to SMS. You’re 20, text message. Walk tall.

(image via)

Cars

Waze now tells you the cost of toll roads along your route

Navigation app Waze now tells you how much you'll be paying for toll roads, should you decide to take them. Enter your route and the app will display the various tolls you'll be paying on that particular trip.
Mobile

The 10 best keyboards for the iPhone, from Gboard to Bitmoji

Apple first allowed third-party keyboard integration with iOS 8, and now there are scores of alternative keyboards on the market. Here's a rundown of the best keyboards for the iPhone, from SwiftKey to Fleksy.
Deals

Amazon knocks 29% off the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL phones for Prime Day

Looking to get your hands on a premium Google Pixel phone? Now’s your chance to score amazing deals on Pixel devices. For Prime Day, Amazon is offering the Pixel 3 (128GB) and the Pixel 3 XL (64GB) for just $639 each.
Mobile

Nomad's new Kevlar-reinforced cable range is now available for purchase

Nomad has just released an update to its super-tough Kevlar range of cables to include a new USB-C to Lightning cable and a blisteringly fast 100W USB-C cable. They're expensive, but they're the toughest cables you'll find.
Mobile

Xfinity Mobile customers can now bring their own Android device to the carrier

Xfinity Mobile, a mobile carrier for Xfinity internet customers, is adding the Samsung Galaxy S9, S9 Plus, S8, S8 Plus, Note 9 and Note 8 to its BYOD program. Customers porting a number on a new line are eligible for a $100 Visa card.
Deals

The best Prime Day smartphone deals: Samsung, Motorola, Google, and more

Amazon Prime Day 2019 is here, and there are a ton of great deals on smartphones worth looking into. Whether you're looking for a new iPhone or an Android device, there should be a Prime Day 2019 deal for you.
Product Review

Samsung's $99 fitness tracker takes on Fitbit. Can it keep pace?

Samsung’s going toe-to-toe against Fitbit’s Inspire HR with its own $99 fitness tracker -- the Galaxy Fit. It also has a heart rate monitor, can automatically detect six workouts, and has a battery that can last for days.
Deals

Apple Watch Series 4 smartwatch now just $360 in Amazon Prime Day deal

Amazon Prime Day is a fine time to buy a new smartwatch. The Apple Watch Series 4 is the cream of the smartwatch crop, and now in an Amazon Prime Day deal, the 44mm model can be yours for just $354, down from its original $429.
Deals

The futuristic Samsung Galaxy S10 5G just got a price cut on Best Buy

Amazon Prime Day 2019 is finally here, bringing with it some of the best smartphone deals you're likely to see all year. In particular, there are some amazing deals on Samsung Galaxy phones, including the much-loved Samsung Galaxy S10.
Apple

Missed out on Amazon’s Prime Day Apple Watch deal? Walmart has you covered

Amazon's deal on the Apple Watch was pretty good, but it sold out within the first 24 hours of Prime Day. As an alternative, we'd suggest you shop Walmart, which has the Apple Watch Series 3 available for $80 off its normal price.
Mobile

Having issues with iOS 12? These fixes will help you get back on track

Apple's iOS 12 has a lot going for it, but it's not perfect and several issues have cropped to annoy people. Here are some of the most common iOS 12 problems we've heard about, with some advice on how to fix them or work around them.
Deals

Amazon cuts up to 40% off on Moto G and Z smartphones on Prime Day

Today at Prime Day, Amazon is exclusively offering selected items on the Moto G and Z family at a discounted price of up to 40%. Take this chance and check them out as we’ve gathered them all here.
Deals

There’s still time for Prime Day iPad deals, even without a Prime membership

Prime Day ends soon but there’s still time to score before the clock runs out. Shoppers looking for a new tablet should strike while the iron's still hot, and this might be your last chance before to snag an iPad deals before summer's…
Mobile

HMD’s Nokia 2.2 is now available in the U.S., and it’s slated to get Android Q

HMD Global's Nokia 2.2 is yet another ultra-affordable phone from the company that's making its way to the U.S. The device offers a modern bezel-less design, and HMD Global said it will get Android Q.