Cingular will be raising the price of sending and receiving an SMS text message to 15 cents starting on January 21, 2007, according to news reports (Cingular raises text messaging fee from 10 to 15 cents :: RCR Wireless News).
Sprint made a similar move back in October.
The current price is just 10 cents (assuming you haven’t purchased a bulk SMS plan, which gives you a discounted rate) so this represents a price increase of 50%.
It’s hard for me to understand why U.S. carriers, which are struggling to get consumers to embrace SMS as enthusiastically as Europeans, would choose to raise their prices. Yes, many more Americans are using SMS than ever before. But the market still has a long way to go before SMS use is truly ubiquitous. As many readers of this site have testified, lots of people aren’t even aware that they can use SMS to send email to a cell phone until they read how to do it here! Raising prices by 50% seems like a sure-fire way to slow down SMS adoption to me. But then, I’m not a greedy telecommunications executive either.
What do you think? Is an SMS text message worth 15 cents?