Press Room: 2003

Keynote Warns That Millions of Wireless Text Messages Are Lost

First Ever Study Shows Critical Interoperability Problems; Lost Revenue Potential is Staggering

Note to press: Call Keynote’s media and analyst-relations hotline at (650) 403-3254 to request further information on Keynote Systems, Inc. or an interview.

SAN MATEO, California — January 15, 2003 — Keynote Systems (Nasdaq: KEYN) today released the results of a study it conducted that for the first time ever quantifies the percent of Short Message Service (SMS) wireless text messages lost between the major wireless carriers in the United States, and the results are dismaying. 7.5% of the messages sent were not received within 120 seconds and were counted as “lost” during the two-week study (December 1 through December 14, 2002). 92.5% of all messages sent arrived at their destination. An availability of only 92.5% may represent a significant loss of information and business when the number of lost messages is calculated.

The study indicates the urgent need for monitoring and diagnostic services that help expose performance problems between the major wireless carriers and ultimately improve performance. Keynote’s data, for the first time, provides carriers with visibility into the performance of SMS once a message leaves their network. Wireless customers with text messaging service are charged for both outgoing and incoming messages and typically will quickly know whether or not the text messages they send are received by the intended recipient. Until now wireless carriers had no way of knowing whether or not a text message was received once a message left their network. Now they do. Giving needed visibility into the performance of their text messaging systems helps carriers optimize potentially lost revenue due to customer dissatisfaction with the quality and consistency of their wireless text messaging service.

Keynote also announced new versions of its Wireless Perspective® Carrier Edition Service (see separate press release issued today).

According to Tom Wheeler, president and CEO of Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA), “30,000,000 text messages were sent in the month of June last year. By June 2002, we saw one billion text messages exchanged. That’s billion with a B. These statistics capture my imagination because text messaging is the training wheels for the wireless Internet.” He went on to say that this amazing growth bodes well for the future of wireless data applications.

"Among the challenges for the adoption of SMS messaging by consumers has been the lack of cross-carrier SMS interoperability,” said Chuck Mount, general manager of Keynote’s Wireless Perspective Service. “If we calculate that out of 30 million messages as many as 10% are lost, the projection for next year could represent a staggering revenue loss for the carriers. In the past year the performance and availability of SMS across a single carrier’s network as measured by Keynote has shown improvement, while the performance of messages sent between carriers is still erratic at times and reflects the infancy of this inter-carrier capability that carriers announced over this past year. That speaks to the real need for an inter-carrier benchmark to avoid the potential for significant loss of revenue for the carriers and the continuing need to improve that performance.”

The addition of inter-carrier measurements gives carriers a benchmark for continued improvement of the transfer of messages between all carriers to provide consistent and reliable performance for customers using SMS. Carriers can take advantage of the expanded capabilities delivered as part of the Keynote SMS Benchmark measured by the Keynote Wireless Perspective Service. Keynote which is the only benchmarking service to provide availability and performance measurement for WAP and SMS multi-step transactions as well as ring tone and picture graphic downloads and support for inter-carrier messaging. Wireless Perspective is part of Keynote’s Total Performance Strategy for benchmarking, testing and managing the end-to end performance of e-business applications and systems.

Keynote publishes the aggregate results of its SMS Benchmark on its Web site and in America’s Network magazine. The detailed results are available through the Keynote SMS Benchmark measured by the Wireless Perspective Service. The details about the methodology behind the Index can be found on Keynote’s Web site at

Keynote SMS Benchmark Results

Aggregate results of the Keynote SMS Benchmark for December 1 through December 14, 2002:

Average Response Time (in seconds)

  AT&T Cingular Nextel T-Mobile Verizon Average
AT&T 13.98 10.57 15.59 10.7 11.8 12.66
Cingular 11.45 9.11 17.85 11.54 14.03 12.58
Nextel 15.75 23.98 8.71 15.54 17.2 15.33
T-Mobile 10.86 10.19 15.81 11.63 11.79 12.1
Verizon 8.86 9.32 16.47 8.74 20.67 13.63
Average 12.26 12.65 14.15 11.6 15.81  

Average Availability

  AT&T Cingular Nextel T-Mobile Verizon Average
AT&T 97.80% 93.80% 93.50% 93.70% 97% 95.50%
Cingular 96.40% 97.30% 92.90% 93.40% 94.50% 95%
Nextel 96.90% 96.20% 89.10% 94.10% 97.10% 94.30%
T-Mobile 86.70% 84.90% 81.60% 87% 88.60% 86%
Verizon 96.40% 95.70% 83.20% 93.90% 96.60% 93%
Average 94.80% 93.80% 87.40% 92% 95%  

About Keynote

Keynote Systems (Nasdaq "KEYN"), The Internet Performance Authority®, is the global leader in Internet performance management services that improve the quality of e-business. Keynote’s services enable corporate enterprises to benchmark, diagnose, test and manage their e-business systems both inside and outside the firewall. More than 2,400 corporate IT departments and 18,000 individual subscribers rely on the company's easy-to-use and cost-effective services to optimize revenues and reduce downtime costs without requiring additional complex and costly software implementations.

Keynote Systems, Inc. was founded in 1995 and is headquartered in San Mateo, California. The company can be reached at or by phone in the U.S. at 650-403-2400.

© 2003 Keynote Systems, Inc. Keynote, The Internet Performance Authority and Perspective are registered trademarks of Keynote Systems, Inc. Other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Public Relations Contacts:

Jason Pfannenstiel, Keynote Systems, Inc., (650) 403-3246,
Erika Freed, Ruder Finn, (212) 715-1538,

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