Messaging apps are killing SMS – text messages fall 23pc in Q2

11 Sep 2014

The impact of apps such as Facebook Messenger, Snapchat and WhatsApp on SMS messaging is becoming clear – 1.8bn text messages were sent in Ireland during the second quarter, a 23pc drop on last year.

Ireland now has a mobile penetration rate of 122pc, or 5.6m mobile phone subscriptions, communications watchdog ComReg reported, revealing that 59pc of all mobile phones in the country are smartphones.

In its market report for the second quarter of 2014, ComReg said broadband subscriptions (fixed and mobile) fell by 0.3pc and currently stand at 1.7m subscriptions.

Across Ireland, the estimated household (fixed and mobile) broadband penetration rate at the end of the second quarter stood at 67pc, with 59pc of all broadband subscriptions now beyond 10Mbps, up from 40pc in the second quarter.

Fixed voice traffic declined 5.4pc, while mobile traffic increased 2.4pc compared to the previous quarter.

The decline of SMS

More than 1.88bn text messages were sent in the second quarter of 2014, down 23.2pc on the same quarter in 2013.

The number of multimedia messages (MMS) sent decreased 6.1pc compared with the second quarter of 2013.

Some 59pc of all mobile voice subscriptions are smartphones, up 14.7pc over the previous 12 months, and data volumes continue to rise, increasing by 53.9pc in the year to the second quarter of 2014 to reach 15,724 terabytes.

Average Revenue Per User (mobile) in the second quarter totalled €25 per month, down from €27 in the second quarter of 2013. The drop in ARPU is due, in part, to less expensive mobile plans and increased sales of bundled products.

ComReg reported there were 5,626,484 mobile phone subscriptions at the end of June, which was an increase of 0.1pc on the previous quarter. Ireland’s mobile penetration rate for the quarter was 122.0pc.

Smartphone users image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years