Misconceptions between SMS and MMS

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The operation of composing and sending electronic messages (generally consists of alphabetic and numeric characters) between two or more than two users of any electronic device is referred to as text messaging. These can be sent by a cell organization or through a web association. Due to their similarities, people get double confused, and these terms are used interchangeably. But they refer to different types of messaging. Straightforwardly, SMS are TEXT MESSAGES, and MMS are TEXT MESSAGES WITH DIGITAL PICTURES, IMAGES, VIDEOS, AUDIOS AS WELL AS IDEOGRAMS OR EMOJIS.

What is meant by SMS?

SMS is an abbreviation used for short message service, and in layman’s language, it is meant a text message. These messages only contain text, without pictures, videos, audios, etc., with 160 characters limit. To exchange short text messages, they use standardized communication protocols to facilitate mobile devices. It was developed in the 1980s and is considered one of the oldest texting technologies. SMS are raised from radio telegraphy in radio memo papers, which uses standardized phone protocols. In 1958, these were settled as part of the global system for mobile communications (i.e., GSM) series of standards. Despite a vastly growing number of communication alternatives, it is the most widely used service till now.


There are some common questions that people generally ask, which are listed below:-

  • What will happen if SMS exceeds a 160 character limit?

Depending on its length, SMS messages will be broken into several other letters. Most carriers chain these messages so that they arrive in the order in 2020.

  • Comment on the popularity of SMS?

Over 6 billion SMS messages are sent daily in the U.S.

  • State the difference between SMS and iMessage or WhatsApp?

Messaging applications like iMessage or WhatsApp are referred to as over the top or OTT applications. To send these, devices don’t need a cellular network as they rely on internet services. The recipient should have the same app downloaded on their phones to send these messages. For Example, each iPhone clients have an iMessage introduced on their telephones, and their messages will default to an iMessage if the beneficiary is utilizing an iPhone. Still, if they are using other devices, then the message will default to an SMS, which appears as a green bubble on the sender’s iPhone instead of a blue bubble.

What is meant by MMS?

MMS is the abbreviation used for multimedia messaging services. It is a developed form of standardized SMS messages. The main difference between SMS and MMS is people can send multimedia in their messages. Videos, pictures, audio clips, GIFs, emojis, etc., are media included in MMS. These rely on the cellular network. MMS allows up to 1600 characters of text in the messages as compared to standard SMS. On a commercial basis, media companies nowadays use MMS to deliver news and entertainment content. MMS faces challenges like content adaptation, distribution lists, bulk messaging, handset configuration, WAP Push, etc.

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The pros and cons of MMS vs. SMS

There are specific pros and cons of each. One is superior to the next at times. These pros and cons are listed below:-

Pros of SMS

SMS messages sound formal and professional, whether for marketing or communication.

  • These are short, sweet, and to the point because of the 160 character limit.
  • It is cheaper than MMS.
  • Most carriers offer plans with unlimited texting; therefore, it is like a no-cost subscribing.

Cons of SMS

There are some occasions where SMS can’t be used.

  • Can’t send videos, photos, etc., related to work in a traditional SMS system.
  • One hundred sixty characters limit can become a hindrance when people have to send information regarding work.

Pros of MMS

MMS messages can be informal and powerful.

  • They are more eyes catching because of photos and videos.
  • Can send an elaborated message because it has a 1600 character limit.

Cons of MMS

MMS cannot always be used.

  • MMS is more costly than SMS.
  • Everyone cannot receive MMS.
  • Have to hire a graphic designer to arrange graphics or videos for MMS.

The cost difference between multimedia messaging service and short message service

MMS will always cost higher than SMS because it requires the senders to send more data than a typical SMS message. The pricing can vary from service to service. For Example, if an SMS costs 100 INR, then an MMS can cost 300 to 500 INR depending on the device’s plan.

MMS and SMS use different protocols

MMS and SMS use different delivery methods to send a message to the recipient. SMS is sending a procedure that passes the message through the base station to another station, switchers, or servers. MMS uses communication methods that allow sending media and uses TCP/IP Technology to encode and decode the message.  TCP/IP messages use internet protocol; senders upload the content, and receivers download them after receiving.

Marketing perspective of MMS and SMS

MMS and SMS use different formatting settings. Widespread of SMS because of these texts’ rates, but MMS can be used as location-based messaging, time-sensitive texts, reminders, Etc. Visual content has a higher value in the market because people like to watch, observe, or listen than reading boring marketing materials. Due to this, MMS reaches the heart of more customers to establish marketing goals.

Compatibility of MMS and SMS

To reach wider recipients, a compatible messaging system should be chosen carefully because MMS is not compatible with many devices.

MMS is more compatible with smartphones and other digital devices such as tablets, smartwatches, etc. On the other hand, analog cell phones are only compatible with SMS and don’t support the MMS system.

SMS is more useful for all devices because they use cell towers, which are used by analogue cell phones and smartphones.

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