When it comes to staying in touch with the world, cell phones offer a wide variety of viable options. In addition to making regular phone calls, you can send and receive messages in a number of different ways. The two most popular ways to send messages with a cell phone are text messaging and instant messaging. As similar as these options are, there are distinct differences between them. There are also pluses and minuses associated with both forms of communication, and it pays to keep them in mind when deciding which one to use on a regular basis.
In order to send and receive text messages, you have to add a texting package to your cell phone plan. This option doesn’t usually cost a lot, but it’s just one more expense that you have to pay. The nice thing about text messaging is that you can send and receive messages to anyone who has a cell phone or mobile device with a texting plan. You simply need their phone number. You don’t have to worry about whether or not a person uses the same IM client as you do.
There are smartphone apps for all of today’s most popular IM services, so it’s not a problem to add this functionality to your cell phone or mobile device. There are also apps that support a wide variety of different IM services, so you don’t have to download and install separate apps for each one. That being said, there are plenty of people who don’t use IM services at all. Without a text messaging plan, you will be unable to communicate with a significant percentage of cell phone users.
Why Not Both?
IMing is free, and text messaging usually costs extra. There’s no reason not to use both types of messaging services. Whether you end up sending instant messages most of the time, or if you primarily stick with text messages, you’ll be able to communicate with a really wide range of people. Having both options isn’t any more expensive than just having a text messaging plan, and many IM programs have notifications that pop up on your phone’s screen. If being in touch at all times is your top priority, you should consider using text messages and instant messages. In the long run, making use of them both is quick, easy and convenient.