Variety

To ping or to text?

R. Dinakaran | Updated on May 02, 2013 Published on May 02, 2013

EW03_SMS

Is the beginning of the end of SMS? Just when we were jolted (and were recovering) by the news that WhatsApp had more users than Twitter, along came the news that the number of messages sent from messaging apps had overtaken SMSs. A report by Informa said some operators were facing decline in messaging revenues. This is not surprising. Unlike SMS, there is no other cost other than what you pay for data; there is no need to worry about exceeding character count; or about having to pay on blackout days as you have to for SMS, even if you have subscribed to an SMS pack.

The messaging apps also have no boundaries. What you spend on data is not going to change regardless of whether your friend is in the same city, country or somewhere abroad.

The success of WhatsApp has spawned a plethora of similar apps - Line, Kik, Kakao Talk, and our own Hike and Talk.to Of the above, WhatsApp has been threatening to go paid for sometime. It has to be seen how many will retain WhatsApp if and when it goes paid.

Though there are great features in the other chat apps, the problem is that you may not find many of your friends using a particular favourite chat app. Hike and Talk.to help you overcome this to some extent. Talk.to also connects to your Google Talk, Facebook and Live (Microsoft Hotmail) accounts. The move away from SMS to these messaging apps seem to be picking up momentum. Many of my friends refuse to use the ‘lousy SMS’ and prefer the messaging apps and also look with disdain if you say you use SMS.

dinakaran.rengachary@thehindu.co.in

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Published on May 02, 2013
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