“The big text message explosion is over. People use Facebook instead,” said Erik Hörnefelt of Swedish mobile phone operator Tre to news agency TT.
Although Sweden’s four major telecom operators have analysed their figures in very different ways, it seems clear that many Swedes are now choosing social media rather than texting with their mobile phones to communicate and send greetings.
Telecom company Tele2 reported 30.7 million text messages being sent on New Year’s Eve, which is 4 million less than last year.
Telia users, who together sent 28.4 million, which constituted 1.2 million fewer messages than last year, from 6am on New Year’s Eve and 24 hours forward.
Tele2, however, looked at figures for the whole of New Year’s Eve as well as the early hours of New Year’s Day.
Tre reported figures of 13 to 14 million text messages over the whole 24 hours. On a normal day approximately 9 million texts are sent by their customers.
Tre also expected a similar amount of texts sent on New Year’s Day, as many users wait until after the clock strikes midnight to send their greetings to family and friends. But at Tre they also saw a slight decrease in text messaging.
“This year’s numbers are somewhat less than I thought they would be,” said Erik Hörnefelt to daily Dagens Nyheter (DN).
And the accessibility of social media through mobile phones are believed to be behind the drop in text message usage.
“We see an increased use of social media. Many people want to be covered and therefore send messages both by text and Facebook,” said Annika Christensson, Information Officer at telecom company Tele2 to DN.