Difference between SMS and MMS

The SMS / short message / text message service was the first premium service offered by mobile companies, apart from making phone calls. It is necessarily restricted to sending text-only messages from one mobile phone to another via the service provider’s special service offered for SMS. You cannot use SMS unless your phone supports the feature and your service provider offers you a plan for this.

Multimedia Messaging Service or MMS is much more enhanced than SMS service and can include not only text and images but also short videos. Similar to SMS service, MMS requires a plan from your service provider and your phone must support this feature. However, all cell phones offer SMS sending and receiving services, not all phones are designed to send and receive MMS messages.

Although sending SMS is much cheaper than MMS, it is restricted to approximately 164 characters at a time, depending on the built-in features of your phone. Some phones come with an increased ability to send SMS. Basic mobile devices may have a length restriction of just one line or so. While SMS requires basic texting capability, MMS requires uploading, storage, and the ability to capture video via a built-in camera as well. Both SMS and MMS have become modern methods of instant contact but the features of SMS stand out in this.

SMS is still the preferred way to send quick, important and short messages. For example, if you need to tell your friend that an appointment will be delayed, a short quick SMS will suffice. MMS, on the other hand, is still more a part of the exchange of entertainment and fun items.

SMS has also developed its own slang which some say has ruined the English speaking habits of youngsters and children. For example, in SMS parlance to say ‘See you later’, you would normally write ‘CU latr’. The emoticons or “expressions” formed by signs on the keyboard to express your emotion at a certain moment are also part of the SMS jargon. For a quick smile, just write :). This looks like two eyes and a sideways curved smile. MMS emoticons are an enhanced version of plain text emoticons with pictures, cartoons, music, and motion built into them.

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