Almost all (95 percent) Singaporean smartphone owners use multiple messaging services today, including SMS, MMS and over-the-top (OTT) instant messaging (IM) apps, according to a latest research by Acision.
Despite the rising addiction for richer messaging services sparked by rich features and lower cost, SMS still remains the bedrock (97 percent) in terms of messaging for Singaporeans.
The reliability of SMS stood out most for its continued existence, followed by its usage as a professional medium for work related massages.
Meanwhile, OTT messaging services are favoured for their rich messaging features - the ability to share files, images and videos and the option to chat with more than one person or a group, as well as the perception of negligible costs.
The findings reveal a striking opportunity for telcos in the region to create a single, unified messaging service which is absent in the market today, said Michael Frausing, senior vice president and general manager of Acision Asia Pacific.
This is underpinned by an overwhelming interest expressed for GSMA's Rich Communication Service (RCS) by 85 percent of those surveyed, given the right price.
RCS combines voice and SMS with instant messaging or chat, live video sharing and file transfer across all devices and networks for users.
"Tech-savvy consumers now want something 'extra' - which can only be achieved by using multiple services concurrently," Frausing added.
"With these new trends rapidly emerging in the market, the technology is ready now for operators to launch a single consolidated messaging platform today."
Besides, operators will be able to draw user data analytics from their networks to provide additional value to their subscribers, through a single messaging platform. This will in turn boost greater service monetisation for incremental revenue.
According to Informa Telecoms and Media forecast, multiple messaging traffic is poised to double over the next three years, hitting global mobile messaging revenues of US$195.9 billion by 2016.
With this, Jorgen Nilsson, chief executive at Acision, said: "If operators act now by launching their own rich messaging or RCS services, they can carve out a service experience which combines all consumer elements and improves user satisfaction, stickiness and incremental revenue generation through new service add-ons."
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