[Posted by Neil Strother]

Some interesting numbers you might have missed in the past few days. VeriSign said it delivered a record 94.8 billion mobile messages (SMS, MMS, A2P) worldwide in the second quarter, up more than 82% from the same quarter a year ago.

OK, but now the clincher: the company delivered nearly 179 billion messages globally in the first half of the year. To put this into perspective, that equates to 26 messages for every person on the planet (6.7 billion). Staggering.

Premium content (alerts, ringtones, voting, etc.) also rose, with premium SMS transactions growing 36% in the quarter compared to the second quarter of 2008, VeriSign said. Marketers continue to recognize that SMS is the most efficient way to reach a wide audience on mobile, something we pointed out in our recent report on best practices for mobile marketing. So, in spite of all the hype surrounding marketing via mobile applications – which we like, mind you – text messaging still delivers the reach.

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