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In 1933, the German Reichspost (Reich postal service) introduced the first "telex" service.
Friedhelm Hillebrand conceptualised SMS in 1984 while working for Deutsche Telekom.
In countries such as Finland, Sweden and Norway, over 85% of the population use SMS.
The European average is about 80%, and North America is rapidly catching up with over 60% active users of SMS by end of 2008 Text messaging is most often used between private mobile phone users, as a substitute for voice calls in situations where voice communication is impossible or undesirable (e.g., during a school class or a work meeting).
The GSM in the US had to use a frequency allocated for private communication services (PCS) – what the ITU frequency régime had blocked for DECT – Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications – 1000-feet range picocell, but survived.
American Personal Communications (APC), the first GSM carrier in America, provided the first text-messaging service in the United States.
APC operated under the brand name of Sprint Spectrum and launched its service on November 15, 1995 in Washington, D. However, not all text-messaging systems use SMS; some notable alternate implementations of the concept include J-Phone's Sky Mail and NTT Docomo's Short Mail, both in Japan.Sprint Telecommunications Venture, a partnership of Sprint Corp. made the initial phone-call to launch the network, calling Mayor Kurt Schmoke in Baltimore.and three large cable-TV companies, owned 49 percent of APC. One factor in the slow take-up of SMS was that operators were slow to set up charging systems, especially for prepaid subscribers, and to eliminate billing fraud, which was possible by changing SMSC settings on individual handsets to use the SMSCs of other operators.Advertisers and service providers use direct text marketing to send messages to mobile users about promotions, payment due dates, and other notifications instead of using postal mail, email, or voicemail.The service is referred to by different colloquialisms depending on the region.