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Updated: March 25, 2010 17:21 IST

Americans sent out 1.5 trillion text messages in 2009: study

PTI
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A person checks her text messages while catching a late lunch at a McDonalds restaurant.
AP A person checks her text messages while catching a late lunch at a McDonalds restaurant.

Mobile phone users in the US sent a staggering 1.5 trillion text messages in 2009, with an average of five billion messages sent out per day in the second half of last year, according to data from a wireless industry trade group.

In its semi-annual survey, CTIA-The Wireless Association said text messaging continues to be enormously popular, with more than 822 billion text messages sent and received on carriers’ networks during the last half of 2009-amounting to almost five billion messages per day at the end of the year.

“During the 2009 calendar year, there were more than 1.5 trillion text messages reported on carriers’ networks,” it said.

Wireless subscribers also sent more pictures and other multimedia messages with their mobile devices.

Over 24.2 billion MMS messages were reported for the last half of 2009, more than double the number from the previous year, when only 9.3 billion were reported for the last half of 2008.

“With wireless connections now equal to more than 91 per cent of the US population, mobile broadband is pivotal to ensuring all Americans are digitally literate.

The wireless ecosystem is constantly reinventing itself, and other industries, to be more productive and efficient,” president and CEO of CTIA Steve Largent said.

As of December 2009, the industry survey recorded more than 285 million wireless connections, a year-over-year increase of more than 15 million.

Largent added that mobile broadband would increasingly play a vital role in people’s lives.

Further, there are now more than 257 million data-capable devices in consumers’ hands, up from 228 million at the end of 2008.

Fifty million of these devices are smart phones or wireless-enabled PDAs and nearly 12 million are wireless-enabled laptops, notebooks or aircards.

According to the survey, wireless customers used more than 1.12 trillion minutes in the last half of 2009, up 38 billion from the same period a year ago.

This was 6.1 billion minutes-of-use per day.

Wireless service revenues for the last half of 2009 amounted to almost USD 77 billion-up from a little more than USD 75 billion in the last half of 2008.

The semi-annual survey results highlight the industry’s continued positive economic impact and growth in the United States, CTIA said.

In particular, wireless data service revenues increased 25.7 per cent from the last half of 2008 to reach more than USD 22 billion for the last half of 2009.

Wireless data revenues, which represent what consumers spend on non-voice services, were more than 28 per cent of all wireless service revenues.

Keywords: text messageUSPDAsmart phone

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