Portio Research's seven reasons to be upbeat about SMS



The 6th edition of Portio Research's market-leading report ‘Mobile Messaging Futures' is now available, and features groundbreaking five-year OTT messaging forecasts - that project OTT traffic will surpass 20 trillion messages in 2016.

‘Mobile Messaging Futures 2012-2016'

contends that while traffic for Over-the-Top (OTT) messaging services will hit 20.3 trillion by end-2016 - a staggering number which Portio Research believes is still extremely conservative - this does not mean that OTT messaging will cannibalise over 20 trillion text messages.

Portio Research sees OTT and SMS traffic growing side by side, synergistically, as the overall volume of mobile P2P messaging increases dramatically. It seems OTT may effectively slow down the growth of SMS over the next few years, but little ‘cannibalisation' will occur in the short term.


However, SMS is at its peak. And while the demise of SMS has been greatly exaggerated, the mobile and wireless community worldwide needs to face the fact that nothing lasts forever, and no product or service or company stays in place as number one forever.

Look how Nokia has lost its dominant global brand strength, and how Apple has risen; look how CDs were replaced by MP3s; look how cheques were replaced by credit and debit cards, which may now possibly be replaced by NFC-enabled smartphones over the next 20 years; and look at how Hotmail gave way to Gmail.

Trends, fashions, favourites, all come and go. SMS will eventually yield to new services.

However, there are many reasons to remain upbeat about SMS.


While this new Portio Research report forecasts ‘the beginning of the end' for the dominance of SMS in North America and Europe, this is hardly a picture of impending global doom and gloom. Let's look at some facts:

 Worldwide SMS traffic reached a staggering total of 7.8 trillion messages in 2011

 This figure is set to grow even further to a breath-taking 9.6 trillion messages in full year 2015

 Worldwide, SMS revenues are forecast to keep growing yearly to 2015

 Our data forecasts worldwide SMS revenue to break the USD 150 billion mark for the first time next year (in 2013) and then continue growing for 2 more years

 Even with revenue levelling off, worldwide SMS revenue is forecast to stay far above 2011 levels for the entire forecast period and beyond

 Throughout the Asia Pacific region, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America, SMS traffic and revenues are forecast to continue growing year after year from 2011 to end-2016

 Worldwide SMS revenues for the period 2010-2016 inclusive, total a staggering USD 1 trillion

The above facts are extracted from Portio Research's ‘Mobile Messaging Futures 2012-2016' report, which is available now.

John White of Portio Research explains, "SMS still has an amazing future. SMS is not dead. SMS is still the king and will remain so for some time to come. The only region seeing a serious dip in SMS revenue at all over the next five years is North America, and that is in some ways because of the mistakes that have been made over pricing in the last few years. With revenue growth heading for USD 150 billion, SMS is a profit powerhouse, and even in those markets forecast to witness some decline, the market will remain at least ‘as good as it is now' for a few years yet."

Fevered interest about SMS and OTT is understandable and relevant, but it is only one element of a wider evolving messaging story that is explored in the expansive sixth edition in Portio Research's hugely popular messaging series. Covering SMS, OTT, mobile e-mail, mobile IM, SMS hubbing, mobile marketing and advertising, and much more, ‘Mobile Messaging Futures 2012-2016' is one of the most detailed and popular reports ever written on the worldwide mobile messaging market.

For further information or to purchase a copy of this report please send an e-mail to: info@portioresearch.com or phone: +44 (0)1249 656964