Text Messaging and Special Populations

texting iconYoung Adults

Text messaging is probably one of the easiest and best ways to reach young people who text message more than any other age demographic — 97% of young adult cellphone users text and many prefer text messaging to voice calls (Pew Research Center, 2012).

The Deaf Community

Text messaging has been important for the deaf community. Prior to text messaging over wireless networks, people who were deaf or hard of hearing relied on TTY telephones or relay services.   Increasingly, texting is a preferred method of communication among deaf people in a variety of situations, including if or when there is an emergency (Cromartie, Gaffey and Seaboldt, 2012).

Other Populations

Text messaging use is likely to increase among the older population as current users’ age and are surrounded by friends and family who text. Further, as adaptive text message applications a (e.g. large buttons, text to speak etc.) are developed, texting is expected to increase among a variety of populations.  It is also likely that age is a more important predictor of text messaging than disability type. To date, texting has been used by teachers to help students with dyslexia and ADHD remember important tasks and deadlines (Center for Implementing Technology in Education, 2008). Additional cellphone applications may have even greater relevance for young people with disabilities.