Instant messaging services like WhatsApp are set to outstrip text messages by more than double this year

Instant messaging surges ahead of text in 2014

Mobile instant messaging services will carry more than twice the number of messages sent by text in 2014, predictions show.

While 21 billion text messages are expected to be sent a record breaking 50 billion instant messages are set to be dispatched – a rapid growth from 2012 when 11 instant messages were sent for every 10 texts, the firm said.

But while instant messaging services like WhatsApp and Snapchat should win the battle for volume this year, text messaging will still generate more revenue, according to the predictions in a technology report to be launched tomorrow.

Text messaging is expected to continue to generate significantly greater revenues until 2018, by which point global text message revenues are expected to have started falling.

Deloitte expects instant messaging services on mobile phones to continue to supersede text messages and all other forms of communication, including email and phone calls.

Despite the burgeoning volumes of messages carried over instant messaging services, text messages are expected to generate more than £60bn in 2014, equivalent to approximately 50 times the total revenues from all instant messaging services.

Deloitte predicts that the fastest growing part of the smartphone market in developed countries will be among the over-55s – nearly half (47 per cent) of this group will own smartphones by 2014, an increase from 40 per cent in May to June 2013.

The first ever text was sent on December 3 1992, when Neil Papworth, a 22-year-old British engineer, used his computer to send the message ''Merry Christmas'' to an Orbitel 901 mobile phone.

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