Tuesday, September 30, 2008

US: More Text Messages Than Phone Calls

American cell phone users are sending more text messages than they are making phone calls, according to a Nielsen Mobile survey. For the second quarter of 2008, U.S. mobile subscribers sent and received on average 357 text messages per month, compared with making and receiving 204 phone calls a month (see chart above). In the first quarter of 2006, Americans sent and received 65 text messages per month. The number of messages sent and received today has increased 450%.

9 Comments:

At 9/30/2008 9:42 PM, Anonymous RebelRenegade said...

I feel the same way about texting as Gin Rummy does.

 
At 10/01/2008 3:22 AM, Blogger juandos said...

Hmmm, I've always wondered what the attraction was in messaging 160 characters pounded out on micro keys was all about...

Weird...

 
At 10/01/2008 6:55 AM, Blogger K T Cat said...

Text messages use far less bandwidth than voice calls. I'd love to see spectrum utilization charts. Ontop of this, though, is the expansion of broadband cellular. At Blogworld Expo 2 weeks back I was relying heavily on my buddy's iPhone to get us addresses for local businesses, all done via the web.

It's a good time to be alive.

 
At 10/01/2008 9:09 AM, Anonymous Kevin said...

this is a teen phenom - nothing more

 
At 10/01/2008 9:39 AM, Blogger Shawn said...

teen phenom? hmm.

i'm in grad school, and I'm late to the grad school party (I'm 30). I text a lot. my wife texts a lot. my fellow grad school classmates text a lot.

...we're not teens. Maybe we're all outliers. does texting slope down as age goes up? sure. but how different is that than most tech usage? as these 'teens' get older, they'll continue to text.

juandos...Particularly when attempting to communicate in places where talking on a phone is poo-pooed, texting works great, particularly to convey facts/data. (what time, what address, where are you, get eggs, get 24 eggs, get comic books because we're teenagers, etc.)

 
At 10/01/2008 9:58 AM, Anonymous Kevin Murphy said...

The phone was invented as part of the attempt to multiplex the telegraph. It was first thought to be impractical because who would want to go down to the telegraph office to talk when the telegram message could be brought to you. Western Union (the telegraph monopoly) was offered and turned down the rights to the phone.

And here we are, 130 years later, and young people are sending telegrams over their phones and it's us old fuddy duddies who think they should only be used for voice, their original purpose.

The phone has now achieved something even better than the original intent - wireless telegrams.

And some people say the age of miracles and wonders has ceased.

 
At 10/01/2008 10:13 AM, Blogger John Thacker said...

There are services that take advantage of texting-- for example, you can text Google to do searches for businesses (location and phone number), sports scores, weather, traffic info, flight info, etc.

The linked articles note that the per-message rates on text messages have gone up, but doesn't discuss the important caveat that the package rates have not. I believe that the carriers have been trying to get people to sign up for huge bundles of messages in order to get them to use it more. (If you have 250 or 500 messages a month for $5, you'll think much less about firing each one off than if it's 20 cents each.)

I've always assumed that the higher use of texting in Europe and Japan was at least partially related to public transport. Texting is a really bad idea while driving, but generally more polite than a voice call when on a bus or train.

 
At 10/01/2008 1:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll bet younger people phone text far more than older folks. I have sent about 4 phone text messages in the last 5 years and three were from my desktop computer.

I can talk a lot faster than trying to type a message on a numerical keypad.

 
At 10/01/2008 6:08 PM, Blogger steep said...

I'm using Tracfones with my kids. Its actually cheaper for us to send a couple of txt messages than to make a phone call.

 

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