The Herald reports:
Still paying for your mobile phone calls and texts? It won’t be long before you’re in the minority.
Technology commentators say apps that allow free calls and texts from their smartphones are becoming so popular that paid calls and texting will soon go the way of the fax machine.
Popular apps include Viber, Skype and WhatsApp. Even Facebook offers free messaging and numerous websites allow text messages to be sent free to mobile numbers around the world.
I use WhatsApp, and it is very good. Only a small proportion of my contacts are on there, but as that grows I suspect it may become the dominant message app.
Of course if you have an iPhone, you can also send a iMessage instead of a text.
The Commerce Commission’s annual telecommunications market monitoring report shows mobile voice call minutes declined to 4.35 billion in the 2011/12 year, down from 4.40 billion the previous year and 4.44 billion in 2009/10.
The number of text messages sent was still growing but the growth had slowed markedly.
More than a billion more messages changed hands between 2008/09 and 2009/10. By 2010/11 and 2011/12, the growth was only 300 million.
“The market for voice and text is as dead as a dodo,” Brislen said. “It’s a matter of letting it all play out. All you need now is to buy a data pack.
“Vodafone is already offering unlimited calls and texting if you buy a big data bundle. That’s the writing on the wall.”
Data is king.