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In the past 15 years, by and large about 200 million seasons greeting sms messages were sent by Telekom customers

Budapest, December 21, 2016 14:00

We send a lots of SMS in the era of smart devices and mobile internet, however by today it is only one of the tools to forward holiday greetings

  • Changing habits: Mobile data traffic can increase minimum by one fourth/one third at Christmas and New Years Eve
  • SMS traffic is also expected to reach a peak in the millions, however the time of absolute records passed already – as revealed by the data of Magyar Telekom.
  • While in the early 2000 years people bombarded each other with Christmas SMS messages and the SMS traffic exceeded 10 million on Christmas Eve, today emoticons sent on snapchat and family photos tuned up with filters are more trendy.

The first SMS was sent on the network of the former Westel 900 back in 1995 and short text messages became the favorite of subscribers for many years, gaining also an important role among modes sending of seasons greetings. In 2002 the number of sent and received SMS messages on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve reached 15.5 million. Even in 2004 about six times the daily average, around 10 million SMS messages were sent on Christmas Eve, while the total SMS traffic also reached 15 million during the Christmas holiday. The number of Christmas SMS and MMS messages reached another peak in 2006- 2008: in these years about 18 million were sent by the subscribers of Telekom (known as T-Mobile at that time). According to the data of the company the number of the seasons greetings SMS messages started to decline from 2009. In the Christmas holiday season of the past years the SMS and MMS traffic showed 10 to 20 percent decrease each year, while in 2015 the company’s subscribers only sent 7.5 million SMS messages during the 3 days of the Christmas holidays.

With the rapidly spreading smart devices and in parallel with building 4G networks offering fast mobile internet, ever more people enjoy the comfort offered by mobile internet and communication habits shifted towards online. Therefore even if the number of SMS messages sent decreases, the mobile internet traffic grows significantly among Telekom subscribers during the Christmas holiday, by about one third. The increase of 4G traffic each year shows a multiple increase versus the previous year. The short poems sent formerly in SMS are replaced by icons, emoticons, images and videos.

„Emoticons constitute a certain code system that is very easy to de-code, while it also offers room for creativity, saves time and is also trendy. Their role within digital literacy and visual rhetoric is so important these days, that it makes a youngster wonder if there are hard feeling when a sentence is received without an emoticon at the end” – said Horváth Dorka, researcher of new media. „SMS is still important in the age of smart devices and mobile internet, however it is only one of the many ways for communication, also during the holiday season. Insta live, snapchat, Facebook chat, iMessage – we can send text messages, icons and photos in many ways. We tend to write text on images, as opposed to attaching an image to the text” – she emphasizes.

„Seasons greetings SMS messages sent to multiple telephone numbers are ever more replaced by Christmas images posted on Facebook, where even 100 friends and relatives can also be tagged. Currently the own content is most trendy, like for example a circulated family photo with filters and text, however simple text and emoticons appropriate for the occasion did not go out of fashion either” – says Horváth Dorka.