Two types of mobile messaging services are battling for users’ thumbs and wallets: mobile instant messaging (MIM) and traditional text messaging (short messaging service or SMS). In 2014, MIM will win the battle for volume, generating over double the number of messages, but global revenues from SMS should be upwards of 50 times higher.As of 2015 Mobile phone messaging apps has been used by more than 1.4 billion consumers up 31.6% - as compared to 2014, according to a recent report from eMarketerWorldwide, that means 75% of smartphone users will use an over-the-top (OTT) mobile messaging app at least once a month in 2015
Deloitte predicts that MIM( Mobile Instant Messaging ) services will carry in excess of 50 billion messages per day this year, compared with 21 billion messages per day sent via SMS
The growth in popularity of messaging apps is projected to continue, as eMarketer predicts that by 2018, the number of mobile messaging app users worldwide will reach 2 billion and represent 80% of smartphone users.
SMS was once the only way a mobile phone user could send a message to another person’s mobile phone. That changed with the arrival of mobile broadband and MIM apps offered by third-party providers, including startups like Line, WeChat, and WhatsApp. These services let users send messages from their smartphones via fixed or mobile broadband (an approach also known as “over the top,” or OTT). Facebook’s purchase of WhatsApp for $19 billion has drawn the business community’s attention to a fact that many teenagers and other users already knew: MIM services are rapidly gaining popularity as an alternative to SMS, but also as a substitute for email, social networks, PC-based instant messaging, phone calls and face-to-face conversations.
There is a simple reason for the vast gulf between revenues for SMS and MIM. “Users often incur tariffs for SMS services (up to 10 cents per message when charged individually, and up to 50 cents when roaming), or else part of most user’s monthly subscription includes a quantity or unlimited text messages. In contrast, the median cost of MIM services is typically zero.
Meanwhile Mobile Instant Messaging surging popularity has already extending into the workplace, where growing numbers of employees are informally using it. CIOs will also need to ensure that security and privacy protections are in place if employees use third-party MIM apps.