Mobile Instant Messaging will cross 1.3 Billion Users by 2016

Juniper Research, in a recent report has projected that the number of mobile instant messaging (IM) users will exceed 1.3 billion by 2016, marking a 300% increase from 2010. The growth is expected to be driven by the continued growth of services like AOL’s AIM, Blackberry Messenger, Microsoft’s Windows Live, Skype and Yahoo! Messenger and Apple’s iMessage.

Increase smartphone adoption, low-cost data packages and the development of high speed mobile networks by the service providers are the key factors to thank for the impressive growth of mobile IM. Further, most IM services are free and considered as customer retention tools by the operators. However, the report suggest that apart from the strengths of mobile IM it won’t be able to take the place of ubiquitous and easy to use SMS.

Some of the key findings from the reports include:

  • With larger screens, internet access and QWERTY keyboard support in more and more mobile devices, the mobile email adoption will also increase.
  • Challenges in other form of billing/delivery will result in the decline of premium-rate SMS and MMS.
  • There will be constant growth in MMS traffic and revenue, however, the impact of A2P (Application-to-Person) MMS will be less than A2P SMS.

You may visit Juniper’s website for further details on the their report titled “Mobile Messaging Markets: SMS, MMS, IM & Email Strategies 2011-2016″.