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A recent report by market research firm, Informa, found that in 2012, and for the first time ever, more messages were sent by chat apps, such as WhatsApp and NimBuzz, than by SMS.

If the current trend continues, the number of messages sent by chat apps will very soon be double the number of SMS messages.

Naturally, we wanted to know which method – SMS or chat apps – Conversations readers used the most. We ran an informal poll last week and here’s the result:

Poll Results
Poll Results


So a clear majority of you voted for chat apps, which seems to confirm the underlying global trend identified by Informa’s report. However, breaking down the results country-by-country shows a more nuanced picture. For example, take the UK and India:


Poll ResultsIndia

Poll Results

Perhaps because a lot of people in the UK enjoy free and unlimited SMS allowances, they are still more likely to use that instead of chat apps? 

It cannot be denied that chat apps are the king of messaging at the moment. Although there’s clearly still a lot of love for SMS – most of the comments on the original post indicated a clear preference for SMS.


SMS of course. Using chat requires a special installation in both my and the recipient’s phone, and internet connectivity. The UI in all phones is also optimized for SMS use. For me, chat apps are totally pointless.


The chat app space is too fragmented for convenience. Some people use Whatsapp, other FB chat, some Skype or Viber; there’s just so many of them. SMS works always, or email if you’re not in a big hurry.

Jeff Daly

I try to get people to use the chat apps as much as possible. It’s little things like knowing if the message has been seen that make it more convenient.

Thanks for taking part in our poll and for all the comments.

image credit: Flavia_FF

poll results