SMS – better known as texting – is a popular way to share quick information between individuals. While it first gained popularity among the teenage sect, SMS drew the attention of enterprises everywhere as a way to communicate with mass markets for a tiny price. Carriers liked the platform as it brought in significant profit without a large burden on the network.
While this is all good news, the future may not bring more of the same. According to this Connected Planet (News - Alert) Online piece, the price of texting has been slowly rising, forcing companies to re-examine their mass communication strategies. As SMS is becoming a big expense, companies are asking how they can mitigate this expense in the future.
The enterprise environment has morphed into a networking environment characterized by IP everywhere. This has a number of people asking when IP is going to truly impact SMS. The answer may have arrived in IP-based Push notifications. IP-based Push offers everything a company likely wants to see in a next-generation SMS product: low cost, real-time two-way communications, ability to place apps on the phone and more.
The arrival of IP-based Push has not escaped notice by carriers and a number of them are moving to embrace Push as part of their communication mix. Even with this movement, however, there are still a number of carriers that are taking a “wait and see” approach. This could be a dangerous move given the importance of real-time communications with mobile phones.
According to Scott Kveton (News - Alert), CEO of Urban Airship, Push is the real deal as the platform has grown from zero to billions of messages served in roughly 18 months. While this does still pale in comparison with the number of SMS messages moving across the mobile networks, SMS also experienced some stagnant years in the beginning. And, the price advantage of Push is nothing to sneeze at: SMS is roughly pennies per message wholesale rate for delivery, and Push notifications through a third-party are thousandths of a cent per message.
The downside is that Push is not yet ready to effectively compete with SMS, but that is likely to change rapidly, especially as great promise from Push aggregators has already been demonstrated. These companies will handle the complexities involved with sending Push notifications to multiple carriers and sort out the individual device compatibility issues to smooth the process.
Efficient communications at the very core are all about least cost routing: get the job done for the lowest price possible. Push offers this element in taking communications beyond SMS and integrating the potential available in an all-IP environment. It will take time, but it is likely coming.
Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Jaclyn Allard