Smartphone messaging apps may be slowly killing mobile SMS messages and leading the frontline is Japanese company Line. It announced in a press conference this week that it has already reached the 300 million users landmark in terms of global users and 100 million of those came only in the last four months.
These are huge numbers for the Tokyo-based company, given that it took them 19 months to get to their first 100 million users. But the next 100 million just came six months after that, and then it just took them four more months to get to the 200-300 million user database. The company’s next target is to reach 500 million users by 2014. However, the numbers they have provided include everyone who has downloaded the application and may or may not have been using it. The figures also count users who are using the app in multiple mobile devices as different people, which may bloat the numbers a little. Even users who download it and then later delete it are also included in the count. So technically, they may not really be 300 million users worldwide who are using the app in actuality.
But Line needs to boost up its profile, given the emerging messaging apps like WhatsApp, WeChat and Viber, which more or less have the same functions. Line’s previous advantage, the cute stickers that are being used as their unique emoticons, are also being copied by its competitors. Line needs to make headway in countries in Asia with emerging high smartphone penetration, like India and the Philippines.
[ via Mobiletor ]