Worldwide IP-based mobile message traffic is expected to catch up with SMS this year, at nearly 10 trillion each, according a study by business mobile systems integrator Tyntec and GigaOM Research. IP mobile messages using OTT technologies such as WhatsApp and Facebook Chat are projected to overtake SMS in 2014 and to reach 15 trillion units by 2016, compared to 11 trillion SMS by the same year. According to the study, users are forced to switch between IP-based messaging and SMS, as they migrate to lower cost messaging services, due to a lack of interoperability and inconsistent delivery of IP messaging.
Nevertheless, SMS is projected to continue to grow, by 5 percent CAGR until 2016, partly due to its ubiquity, interoperability and global reach for app-to-person messaging. The report concludes that the growth of IP-based messaging and SMS solutions have ultimately reached an impasse and will be forced to converge as end-users continue to demand more streamlined messaging. It suggests that virtual phone numbers are a promising solution to the fragmentation, as these provide a universal identifier to seamlessly converge the two technologies.
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