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Three-Quarters of All Electronic Messages are Sent Via Mobile Phones

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A survey has found that 74% of all messages globally are now sent through a mobile device, report TNS. This is a huge increase on 12 months ago where this figure was only 59%. This trend is even higher in emerging markets where nine out ten messages now go out via mobiles.

"As mobile devices slowly take away usage share from fixed services in developed markets, in emerging markets consumers are more likely to by-pass fixed communications altogether and go straight to mobiles," said Sam Curtis, Sector Development Manager at TNS Technology. The study reveals that in India, for example, consumers are twice more likely to have a mobile phone than a fixed line telephone.

Although emailing from a PC is still the most popular form of messaging in the developed world, there are signs that this too is changing. In Japan for instance, 40 out of 100 emails sent are from a mobile device and in North America, 69% of those using email on their mobile phone use it daily, compared to only 43% globally. This trend looks set to continue, not least because of the rise in Smartphones entering the market.

Mobile Instant Messaging (MIM) is another communication technology experiencing strong growth. 13% of mobile users now use this feature globally, compared to only 8% in the previous year. The growth amongst Smartphone users is even more dramatic with an increase from 13% to 41% this year.

But once again, it is in the emerging markets that MIM has the most opportunities. In China for example, a significant 16% of mobile phone owners use MIM, which accounts for 27 out of every 100 messages sent across all technologies. When we compare this to the US, MIM penetration sits above China at 17%, but only accounts for 5 out of every 100 messages sent.

Sam Curtis continues: "This is another example of the emerging market consumer leap-frogging right to the most suitable technology. We have also seen very similar trends emerging in Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. MIM's low cost and less formal tone is ideally suited to consumers who can communicate without boundaries for the first time.

The way that consumers communicate is changing and diversifying and not one brand or service provider can claim to have effectively captured these trends and delivered the complete consumer communication experience. With stats like these, this won't be the case for much longer. "

TNS completed analysis of the results of its Global Technology Insight in 32 markets with more than 20,000 consumers in January 2009. The study looked into some of the most pressing themes in the telecoms industry such as the purchase process, brand commitment, usage, opportunities in the emerging markets and convergence.

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Tags: sim  smartphone  smartphones  instant messaging  tns  email  latin america