Text messaging may be going the way of the LP, and social media might be to blame for the decline in SMS in a more-connected-than-ever world.
Text messaging came to prominence in the early to mid-00s, as people realized they didn’t have to actually get on the phone to pass on a brief message to a friend, colleague or family member. Soon text messaging supplanted phone calls as the preferred method of communication between connected individuals, with the exception of a few texting abstainers who remained insistant that the process was confusing, annoying or inconvenient.
But as fast as text messaging rose, it seems now to be falling — and services like Facebook and Twitter may be responsible. The increasing availability and prominence of smartphones may be part of the reason, as well as a growing reliance on Facebook for general social connectivity.
The New York Times cites a report released Monday that crunches the numbers, noting the decline is small but significant:
“For the first time, the American wireless market saw a decline in the total number of messages sent by each customer each month, according to a report published Monday by Chetan Sharma, an independent mobile analyst who is a consultant for wireless carriers. In the third quarter of this year, cellphone owners sent an average of 678 texts a month, down from 696 texts a month in the previous quarter.”
Regardless of the reasons, texting is on the decline as mobile data plans trend upward — and cell phone carriers are not complaining, as 45 percent of revenue is now attributable to data plans.
Have you abandoned text messaging in favor of Facebook messaging or Twitter DMs?