INSTANT messaging services on mobile phones are likely to carry more than twice the number of messages sent by text in 2014, according to global predictions by Deloitte.

As 50 billion instant messages are set to be dispatched, 21 billion text messages are expected to be sent – a rapid lift from 2012, when 11 instant messages were sent for every 10 texts, the firm said.

While instant messaging services – such as WhatsApp and Snapchat – may win the battle for volume this year, text messaging will be victorious in revenue terms, according to the technology report, which will be launched tomorrow.

Text messaging is expected to continue to generate significantly greater revenues until 2018, by which point global text message revenues are expected to have started falling.

Deloitte expects instant messaging services on mobile phones to continue to supersede text messages and all other forms of communication, including email and phone calls.

Despite the burgeoning volumes of messages carried over instant messaging services, text messages are expected to generate more than STG60 billion ($A110.64 billion) in 2014, equivalent to about 50 times the total revenues from all instant messaging services.

Deloitte predicts that the fastest-growing part of the smartphone market in developed countries will be among the over-55s.

About 47 per cent of this group will own smartphones by 2014, an increase from 40 per cent in May-June 2013.

The first text was sent on December 3, 1992, when Neil Papworth, a 22-year-old British engineer, used his computer to send the message “Merry Christmas” to an Orbitel 901 mobile phone.