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Free message apps 'to cost telcos $28b' in 2012

Published on Oct 11, 2012 3:58 PM
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Global telecom operators are expected to have lost US$23 billion (S$28.6 billion) in SMS revenues by the end of 2012 as smartphone users shift to free messaging applications, an industry report said on Thursday. "Social messaging is becoming more pervasive and operators are coming under increased pressure to drive revenues from the messaging component of their communications business," said Ovum consumer telecoms analyst Neha Dharia. Ovum cited the increasing popularity of WhatsApp (pictured), which allows smartphone owners to exchange messages for free using wireless Internet links, bypassing SMS gateways that charge users per message or for a monthly quota. -- PHOTO: WHATSAPP

SINGAPORE (AFP) - Global telecom operators are expected to have lost US$23 billion (S$28.6 billion) in SMS revenues by the end of 2012 as smartphone users shift to free messaging applications, an industry report said on Thursday.

Technology research company Ovum forecast the losses would more than double to US$54 billion by 2016 as the traditional short messaging service (SMS) gives way to Internet-based platforms such as WhatsApp.

This compares with estimated losses of US$8.7 billion in 2010 and US$13.9 billion last year.

"Social messaging is becoming more pervasive and operators are coming under increased pressure to drive revenues from the messaging component of their communications business," said Ovum consumer telecoms analyst Neha Dharia.

 
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