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SMS, MMS hit New Year card sales

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FOR A DEAR ONE: Students look at a greeting card at a shop in Vijayawada on Saturday.
FOR A DEAR ONE: Students look at a greeting card at a shop in Vijayawada on Saturday.

J.R. Shridharan

Generation X prefer SMS, MMS to cards as it is considered convenient, timesaving

Patronage is more from elderly and children Corporates wish to send cards by post as an image-building exercise Rural Indians still prefer to send cards by postal department

VIJAYAWADA: Gone are the days when denizens used to mill around dozens of kiosks to buy trendy New Year greeting cards to wish their near and dear ones. Till a decade ago, the exercise of sending the cards used to begin a week before the D-Day, considering the distance the cards should travel to reach the destination. Even the post offices used to witness hectic activity with people fixing the stamps in a frenzied manner before dropping it in the huge red box. Not anymore.

Thanks to the technological advancement, the multimedia messing service (MMS), short messaging service (SMS) available in mobile phones and Internet accessibility have literally shortened the lifespan of the once-prosperous greeting card industry.

Says Rajesh of Fancy Novelty Centre at Mogulrajapuram: "The response is lukewarm. Gen X prefer SMS, MMS to cards, as it is more convenient and timesaving. Now that even pictures can be transmitted, the significance of sending cards is fast losing its relevance."

Many shopkeepers said the patronage was more from the elderly folks and children, who still believed in greeting people in a traditional manner by sending cards. "Corporate sector, institutions, officials and bureaucrats still prefer sending cards as they consider it as an image-building exercise," says Venkatakrishna of Spurthi Novelty at MG Road.

E-mail era

Many youngsters feel by just a click of the mouse, people can send greetings to as many people as they want all around the world. "It is the era of e-mail. The snail mail (read postal department) is not our cup of tea," says a yuppie.

However, Postal Master-General B.V. Sudhakar's words defy the myth prevalent among the majority of the youngsters. "The statistics available in the postal department proves that national greeting mail is increasing by five per cent every year.


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