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When did short text messages become so popular?

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Quick Answer

Short text messages became a popular method of communication during the late 1990s due to the inclusion of Short Messaging Service capability on cellphones. The 160-character limits of SMS messaging combined with the limited keypads of older cellphones made the use of relatively short messages a necessity.

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Full Answer

The original SMS protocol is a relatively simple text message system that is suited for use on systems with limited bandwidth, making it ideal for use on early cellphones. Though SMS has been supplemented with later technologies, such as Multimedia Messaging Service, that permit transmission of data such as pictures and emojis, the brevity of SMS messages has endured since the use of text messaging became popular.

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