Growth of Texting

It should come as no surprise, especially if you have kids, that the amount of texting for smartphone users continues to increase.


Some 83% of American adults own cell phones and three-quarters of them (73%) send and receive text messages. The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project asked those cell phone owners in a survey how they prefer to be contacted on their cell phone and 31% said they preferred texts to talking on the phone, while 53% said they preferred a voice call to a text message.

Heavy text users are much more likely to prefer texting to talking. Some 55% of those who exchange more than 50 messages a day say they would rather get a text than a voice call. Young adults are the most avid texters by a wide margin. Cell owners between the ages of 18 and 24 exchange an average of 109.5 messages on a normal day—that works out to more than 3,200 texts per month—and the typical or median cell owner in this age group sends or receives 50 messages per day (or 1,500 messages per month).

Overall, the survey found that both text messaging and phone calling on cell phones have leveled off for the adult population as a whole. Text messaging users send or receive an average of 41.5 messages on a typical day, with the median user sending or receiving 10 texts daily—both figures are largely unchanged from what we reported in 2010. Similarly, cell owners make or receive an average of 12 calls on their cells per day, which is unchanged from 2010.

These results come from a nationally representative phone survey of 2,277 adults ages 18 and older conducted from April 26-May 22, 2011, including 755 cell phone interviews. The margin of error for the whole survey is +/-2.3 percentage points, while the margin of error for cell phone users is +/-2.7 percentage points.

Steve Anderson provides information to insurance agents about how they can use technology to increase revenue and/or reduce expenses. He speaks professionally to hundreds of agents each year on the future of technology, the social web, and how insurance agencies can establish their Internet presence.

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2 thoughts on “Growth of Texting

  1. There are a couple of ways to send text from your computer. If you know the person’s mobile number and the service provider (ATT, Verizon) you can look up the “e-mail address” of that mobile phone. For example, for AT&T the address would be the following: Using any email program you can send a message directly to that phone using this address.

    You can also add to Microsoft outlook the capability to send text messages just like email message. You need to add a new account to Outlook and also subscribe to an SMS Gateway Service.

    The third way is to secure a Google Voice phone number. This is a free service offered by Google. This phone number will accept text messages and allow you to send text messages. More information is available at