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August 16, 2011, 12:08 AM GMT+0

British people whose main phone is a smartphone value texting as highly as making and receiving calls, our survey has shown. More than a quarter say making and receiving calls is the most important function their smartphone offers compared to slightly less who say texting is most important. The use of apps and emails come next in the list of functions that smartphone users value most.

  • 27% of British people say making and receiving calls is the most important function of smartphones, compared to 26% who say texting is most important
  • One in seven (14%) people now value ‘apps’ as the most important function on their smartphone
  • The fourth most valued function on a smartphone is email (12%) followed by the ability to access social media such as Facebook or Twitter (9%)
  • Women (32%) are more likely than men (20%) to value texting the most
  • Whereas more men (18%) than women (10%) most value apps
  • Young people aged 18 to 24 are more than three times as likely to value texting as a function on their smartphone over making and receiving calls (40% compared to 12%)
  • While people 55 and over are much more likely to value making and receiving calls (44%) rather than texting (23%)
  • But when it comes to sending a message to a friend or relative, texting is by far the most popular method, with 82% choosing this, 7% choosing email and 6% apiece picking Facebook, and forms of instant messenger (such as BlackBerry or MSN)

Despite all the new functions available on smartphones including email, social media, camera, games and maps, people still value making and receiving calls and texting most highly. The poll also shows that smartphone apps are now even more valued by users than the ability to use email on smartphones.

Santanu Nandi, Executive Vice President of Firstsource Solutions, Telecom and Media division, said: ‘Who could have predicted when mobile phones were first introduced that texting would become as important a part of our lives as making and receiving calls? This new data proves that texting is still thriving on smartphones and predictions of its decline due to new technologies such as instant messenger and social media were premature.’

He advised, ‘Brands should consider texting as an important customer service channel. This should help them in delivering better customer experience by providing customer service related updates through SMS.’