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January 03, 2007

In-Stat: Messaging Services Succeed as Mobile Entertainment in Latin America, Elsewhere

Modern communications technology has made it easier than ever for people to send message to each other—and more fun too. In fact, messaging (think e-mail, voicemail, IM) is no longer merely a practical form of communication, but a form of entertainment as well.
Industry analysis firm Frost & Sullivan noted the messaging-as-entertainment trend in a new report out this week, examining the phenomenon as an important and growing revenue source for mobile operators.
The importance of revenues from messaging is being driven in part by the fact that carriers are actively marketing such services with an entertainment wrapper. In the Latin American market, at least, the tactic is posed for much success: the messaging market in that region brought in revenues of $2.4 billion in 2005, and if current growth continues that number will rise to $7.9 billion in 2011.
The extent to which competition exists in a given market will largely determine how much revenue messaging services can bring in for mobile providers, In-Stat (News - Alert) analyst Jose Crujeiras noted.
“The stronger competition, marketing strategies, and stronger advertising campaigns are likely to foster the demand of messaging services, especially multimedia messaging services (MMS) due to the accessibility of enabled handsets,” Crujeiras said in a statement.
In-Stat noted in its report that competition and growth in messaging industry markets vary by country, depending on factors such as mergers/acquisitions, the introduction of new companies, the sophistication of marketing campaigns, and price levels.
“High prices and low offer of attractive plans can obstruct the growth of the markets causing a lower usage of the technology,” Crujeiras explained in a statement. “Moreover, despite agreements that have been consolidated between operators for these types of services, there are still restrictions for MMS.”

Major opportunities to offer high-quality messaging plans to young users tend to be localized, but other segments of the market (SMS and MMS, for example) present broader opportunities targeted to enterprises, In-Stat said.
Interested in learning more about how mobile technologies are changing are people work, live and play? Be sure to check out TMCnet’s White Paper Library, which provides a selection of in-depth information on relevant topics affecting the IP Communications industry. The library offers white papers, case studies and other documents which are free to registered users.
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Mae Kowalke previously wrote for Cleveland Magazine in Ohio and The Burlington Free Press in Vermont. To see more of her articles, please visit Mae Kowalke’s columnist page. Also check out her Wireless Mobility blog.


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