Mobile phones have become ubiqitous. Rare to find a person without a mobile phone. And like email is the killer application on the Internet, SMS is the killer app on mobile phones, at times preferred to making a call. So much, that Yahoo Messenger IM client supports it.
SMS is pretty reliable, and delivery is not delayed..unless of course the receiving phone is off.
But has SMS usage been restricted to sending mostly silly forwards between friends? I feel SMS can be used for more. A simple example is a self monitoring and reporting mechanism. A device monitors itself...and if it detects a fault then a SMS message can be sent to the appropriate persons to take appropriate action.
One example : The traffic lights fail at some place and the policemen who are currently around the place can be informed. They can then go to the spot and manually direct traffic till such time the lights are restored.
Well now one can say 'what if the person who received the message repudiates'. That is a lack of professionalism to say the least and that is not the point of discussion here.
Second: Consider the case of call centers, where employees are picked up from home. If there is a change in the driver, who is to do the pick up, then all people who are supposed to come in that vehicle can be immediately informed by SMS. Use a simple app on the PC to send the message to a distribution list and then the s/w can handle the rest. Infrastructure? May be needed..i dont know. Maybe this can prevent another Pratibha incident.
Third:Building on the previous one slightly. RFID the vehicles. And when it gets near a certain point the person to be picked up can be informed tht the vehicle is near, so he/she can go the the designated pick up spot.
Issues of privacy, security etc....i have no idea. Maybe there isnt something so critical for someone to be alarmed about.
Rambling over!!...now coffee time.