SMS won't last forever, IM on mobile phones is simply too compelling. But operators, if smart, do have choices that will let them make the most from SMS while it lasts.
"One way to avoid this threat is to move further towards offering flat-rate pricing that includes messaging. In doing so, the messaging part is looked up on as being "free," and there's less incentive to look for messaging alternatives. Another, is to focus more on developing SMS as a platform for additional applications and services. This is already starting with various premium SMS offerings, but it needs to go further to differentiate SMS as a platform from basic text messaging. Either way, though, operators who think their SMS revenue is secure probably need to start thinking again."