Chapter 7. Texting & Messages

The term “iPhone” has never seemed especially appropriate for a gadget with so much power and flexibility. Statistics show, in fact, that making phone calls is one of the iPhone’s least-used functions! In fact, 57 percent of us never use the iPhone to make phone calls at all.)

But texting—now we’re talking. Texting is the single most used function of the modern cellphone. In the U.S., we send 6 billion texts a day; half of Americans send at least 50 texts a day. Worldwide, we send 8.3 trillion texts a year. That’s a lot of “how r u”s and “LOL”s.

Apple, wary of losing customers to creative messaging apps like WhatsApp, Google’s Allo, and Facebook Messenger, has radically overhauled its Messages app in iOS 10. Its special effects and cool interactions easily match most offerings of rival apps—and, thanks to a new Messages app store, even surpass them. Text-message conversations no longer look like a tidy screenplay. Now they can be overrun with graphics, cartoons, animations, and typographic fun.

There are so many creative ways to express yourself now that “Oh, sorry—it’s so hard to convey tone in a text message” will no longer cut it as an excuse.

Text Messages and iMessages

So why is texting so crazy popular? For reasons like these:

  • Like a phone call, a text message is immediate. You get the message off your chest right now.

  • And yet, as with email, the recipient doesn’t have to answer immediately. The message waits for him even when his phone is turned off. ...

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