438 billion messages to be sent every day by 2019

Mobile and online messaging traffic is set to reach colossal new heights in before the end of the decade, with researchers predicting we’ll soon be sending 438 billion messages every day.

The data, compiled by Juniper Research, includes SMS and MMS, as well as instant messaging, social media and email communications. In total, the firm’s experts expect 160 trillion messages to be sent annually by 2019, up almost 70 per cent from the current figure of 94.2 trillion.

While the popularity of over-the-top (OTT) messaging services is growing rapidly among consumers, the study found that enterprises continue to regard application-to-person (A2P) SMS as more secure than the alternatives. Perhaps as a result, A2P revenue is expected to hit $70 billion (£45.6 billion) by 2019, marketwatch.com reports.

Email accounted for the biggest share of traffic in 2014, but it’s worth noting that 80 per cent of the 35 trillion messages sent were spam.

What’s more, the report’s authors expect instant messaging to take the top spot within the next 12 months. According to itproportal.com, WhatsApp alone already accounts for more than 30 billion messages every day.

The rise of OTT will bring the industry’s value down by around $600 million (£390.7 million), however, with each online message generating less than one per cent of the revenue of a regular SMS or MMS. The long-term sustainability of these channels has been called into question, though, as continuing with the free model could potentially make it difficult for instant messaging services like these to remain profitable.