Mobile phone companies losing out to social messaging

It has emerged that people who prefer to use social messaging services such as BBM and WhatsApp are costing mobile phone companies throughout the world millions.

Research conducted by analyst firm Ovum found that the increasing use of IP-based messaging services on smartphones cost mobile phone operators US$13.9 billion ($13 million) last year and a further US$8.7 billion in 2010.

Consumer analyst at Ovum and author of the report The Casualties of Social Messaging Neha Dharia said social messaging is disrupting traditional services and operators' revenues will come under increasing pressure.

Senior analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media Pamela Clark-Dickson added: “Mobile operators are under pressure to continue being recognised by their subscribers as the main provider of voice and messaging services on mobile devices.”

People in Australia may still use SMS messaging though as Telstra recently became the first operator to sign up for a world-first emergency alert system that delivers text messages to mobile phones.

Posted by Simon Thomas

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