Feature Article

October 18, 2012

RCS to Top 83 Billion Messages Sent Per Year by 2017

Mobile messaging is already huge, but is expected to get even bigger in the years to come, according to a new report from analyst firm Juniper Research. For example, by 2017, users will generate 83 billion "Rich Communication Suite" (RCS) mobile messages yearly. This is a huge number, to be sure, and so Juniper's prediction that that this amount will only account for less than one percent of total messaging traffic in five years' time is staggering. Obviously, traditional SMS, along with IP instant messaging, e-mail and social messaging will make up the remainder.

Put simply, RCS is an industry effort focused on using IP multimedia subsystem for mobile phone communication services. It encompasses services such as presence, voice call, instant messaging, video and image sharing, SMS and MMS. Juniper's report includes joyn-branded RCS-e and RCS services together as RCS.

Image via Shutterstock

Many operators in Western Europe, as well as other developed markets, are planning to launch joyn-branded RCS-e services, while Spain has already experienced a few launches. The Juniper report also assesses user experience, rollout costs, handset vendor support and business models for RCS-e and RCS, with the general overall response being cautious optimism.

The report goes on to point out, though, that SMS, which still holds top position in the mobile messaging world and will continue to do so by 2017, took three decades to reach the level of use it enjoys today. Joyn-branded RCS-e services, meanwhile, will only be five years of age by 2017, while there are still obstacles to overcome before these services can topple SMS.

“While nine of the 10 handset manufacturers are pre-installing the joyn app on smartphones, more work needs to be done to get chat services onto feature phones,” said report co-author Dr. Windsor Holden in a statement.

Other Juniper reports recently released include one regarding roaming revenue, which is expected to exceed $80 billion by 2017, while another on the topic of mobile shopping expects the practice to increase by 50 percent within the next two years.

Edited by Brooke Neuman

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