Text messaging more popular than ever on its 21st birthday

The average mobile phone user sends twice as many text messages now than they did four years ago, muckrack.com reports.

According to new figures released by Ofcom, the typical Brit now sends around 50 messages per week, or 200 a month. This shows, analysts have claimed, that the SMS industry is not suffering through the likes of OTA services such as WhatsApp or social networks like Facebook, but instead becoming more popular.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, text messages were deemed to be most popular among those aged between 12 and 15, who would typically send a month’s worth (193) in just one week.

These results have meant that text messages are now the preferred method of communication for mobile phone users, beating not only messaging services and social networks, but even video or voice calls.

When quizzed on the communication methods they used daily, the highest proportion (90 per cent) of those aged between 16 and 24 cited text messages. This fell to 74 per cent for social networking, 67 per cent for mobile phone calls and 63 per cent for face-to-face contact.

This announcement came at a time, itv.com notes, when text messaging “comes of age”, seeing as the first SMS was sent on December 3 1992. The sender, Neil Papwell, programmed his computer to send the message “Merry Christmas” to an Orbitel mobile.