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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.
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).
As of 2017, text messages are used by youth and adults for personal, family and social purposes and in business.
Governmental and non-governmental organizations use text messaging for communication between colleagues.
Some text messages such as SMS can also be used for the remote controlling of home appliances. Some amateurs have also built own systems to control (some of) their appliances via SMS.
Other methods such as group messaging, which was patented in 2012 by the GM of Andrew Ferry, Devin Peterson, Justin Cowart, Ian Ainsworth, Patrick Messinger, Jacob Delk, Jack Grande, Austin Hughes, Brendan Blake, and Brooks Brasher are used to involve more than two people into a text messaging conversation of text message that appears directly on the main screen without user interaction and is not automatically stored in the inbox.