Text messaging continues to grow in the US but is showing signs of deceleration. The average customer for AT&T sends 621 messages per month. That is an average of 20 text messages per day per person. So is it conservative enough to assume that the average customer across all carriers sends 15 text messages per day?
AT&T handles 180 billion text messages per year which are roughly 500 million per day. It was estimated in 2009 that 2.5 billion text messages are sent per day in the US. If we assume that AT&T has a 30% market share of 300 million total US wireless customers. We can assume that 5 billion text messages are sent per day if we estimate that the usage is 16 messages per day across all of the carriers. 50% growth in 2 years isn't bad but is that going to change with new free text messaging services coming out?
The total cost of managing a text messaging network is hardly anything and the profit margins are enormous for carriers. If a mobile phone customer is paying $10 per month for text messaging that is roughly 33 cents per day. If there are 300 million US wireless phone users we can assume that text messaging is a $100 million dollar per day market which equals $36 billion dollars per year for the carriers. Pretty scary if we assume that Instant Messaging, Facebook, Google Voice, Skype, Twitter, and Email are all free and provide a much better service. You have to ask yourself is this fair competition or is a text messaging a scam?
Most carriers don't tell you how to send free text messages using services like Google Voice for obvious reasons but that will change in the future. Apple, Google and Microsoft may start to get into the data network business soon which we be great for competition and consumers.
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