According to new research, traditional carriers are more and more willing to work with third party OTT services. According to U.K. analyst mobilesquared, who analyzed a pool of over 40 mobile network operators, more than a third of the polled telecoms partnered with OTT providers. Apps like WhatsApp, WeChat, Skype, and Line command billions of regular, highly engaged users, which commands a certain sense of jealousy on the part of carriers. Indeed, mobilesquared expects the OTT market to be worth $53.7 billion, with a total of 2.1 billion users by 2017, with a total penetration of smartphone users at 66%. These stats are telling: the OTT, startup messaging era is upon us.
THe ver-The-Top (OTT) messaging space continues to grow rapidly and affect user behavior in the mobile space. Today popular messaging app What’s App reported having processed 27 Billion (yes, with a b) messages in just one day.
OTT messaging allows users to send messages to eachother without encroaching on carrier SMS limits, and enables smoother group chat functionality than is typically available within an SMS context.
While many large rivals including China’s We Chat or Canada’s Kik employ a freemium model and/or are ad supported, What’s App is ad-free and costs 99 cents per year to use.