Thumbs of people the world over are getting some serious action. That action comes in the form of pecking out text messages on their cell phones. So far, 2008 is on pace to smash last year's numbers by a mile. Some of the figures being touted by VeriSign are just staggering. It sent more than 52 billion messages in the second quarter, up more than 20% from the first quarter for a total of 95.4 billion messages. People sure have a lot to say.According to VeriSign, if things continue at this rate, it will double last year's record of 96 billion messages. That would be nearly 200 billion messages sent in one year. Dividing that by the 3 billion mobile phone users means each and every one would have to send 66 text messages in a year for the world total to hit 200 billion. The actual percentage of people using SMS services, however, is concentrated in certain types of users. Not everyone uses SMS. Not by a long shot.
Today alone I have sent and/or received 40 text messages. What can I say, it's been a pretty light day. Yesterday, I sent/received more than 100. I am just a drop in the bucket, though.
An average of 572 million messages were sent each and every day throughout the second quarter of 2008. That's 342 million more per day than were sent in the second quarter of 2007.
The highest number of messages sent in a single day comes in at 648 million. To put that number in perspective, every mobile phone in North America and Europe combined would have to send one text message to equal 648 million.
What about picture messaging? Is that getting any traction? You betcha. VeriSign reports that MMS rates through June 2008 nearly tripled 2007 delivery rates. "MMS continues to show strong growth both domestically and abroad. In Q2 2008, approximately 331 million MMS messages were sent via the VeriSign Intercarrier MMS network, up from approximately 272 million messages in Q1 2008 and nearly tripling the number of messages from Q1 2007."
At this point, I send so many SMS messages that I've opted for an unlimited bucket of them each month. Such unlimited buckets of text messages have only been around for about a year. I would bet that their availability has something to do with the surge in the number of SMS's being sent around the world.