Implications of Electronic Mail and Message Systems for the U.S. Postal Service

46 .Implications of Electronic Mail and Message Systems
EMS growth and timing parameters have
been held constant while other variables (e.g.,
EFT growth rate, Generation III 5 percent
penetration date, underlying mainstream
growth rate) have been changed. In order to
test the sensitivity of the projected mail
volumes to changes in the baseline Generation
II EMS assumptions, computer runs were con
ducted for each of the four Generation II EMS
alternatives defined in chapter 3 (table 7):
1. baseline alternative high but plausible
Generation II EMS growth;
2. very high Generation II EMS growth;
3. moderate growth; and
4. slow growth.
The Generation II EMS market projections
for these four alternatives are presented in
figure 8. Results are shown for both 2- and
3 percent underlying mainstream growth rates.
The market projections developed by RCA
(under contract to USPS for the electronic
message service system concept, known as
EMSS) are also included in figure 8 for com
parison purposes.
As expected, projected volumes for the high
but plausible Generation II growth alternative
fall in the middle when compared to the very
high, moderate, and slow alternatives. Some
what surprisingly, however, volumes for the
high but plausible alternative are considerably
below the RCA projections. If this alternative
is indeed a high but plausible market develop
ment scenario, as assumed by OTA, then it
would appear that the RCA projections repre

for the U.S. Postal Service

sent a very high (i.e., optimistic) market
development scenario, that they have ignored
competition with Generation III EMS serv
ices, or both. The size of the Generation II
EMS market takes on considerable impor
tance with respect to the actual deployment
and pricing of any USPS EMS offering.
Based on the figure 8 results, it would ap
pear that a conservative estimate (assuming
slow to moderate Generation II growth and
a 2 percent underlying mainstream growth)
would place the year 2000 Generation II EMS
volume in the range of 7 billion to 14 billion
pieces, rather than the RCA estimate of 25
billion. Likewise, a conservative estimate
would place the 1995 volume in the range of
3 billion to 10 billion pieces, rather than the
23 billion RCA estimate. If Generation II
EMS growth actually followed the slow
growth path, volume is projected to reach only
40 million pieces in 1985, equivalent to the
volume of Mailgrams for fiscal year 1980. On
the other hand, if Generation II EMS grows
very rapidly, the projected volume would ex
ceed the RCA estimates until the late 1990's.
If a 3 percent underlying mainstream growth
rate is assumed, the projected year 2000 vol
ume of about 23 billion pieces for the high but
plausible Generation II EMS alternative is es
sentially the same as the RCA estimate.
In sum, the projected mail volumes are very
sensitive to the assumptions implicit in the
four alternatives considered for Generation II
EMS development.

United States. Congress. Office of Technology Assessment. Implications of Electronic Mail and Message Systems for the U.S. Postal Service. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc39480/. Accessed August 27, 2014.