4. Will the
purchased credits or SMS messages expire after a certain period?
some SMS gateway providers, the credits or SMS messages purchased can
only be used within a certain period. After which the credits or SMS
messages will expire and cannot be used any more. If you choose an
SMS gateway provider that imposes such restriction, you should be
more conservative when estimating the amount of SMS traffic of your
5. How good is the
SMS gateway provider's network coverage?
coverage is an important factor you need to consider, since it is
possible that an SMS gateway provider cannot deliver SMS messages to
your SMS application's targeted countries or mobile operators. You
can very often find a detailed list of the supported countries and
mobile operators on the web site of an SMS gateway provider.
it should be noted that the network coverage web page may not be
updated. Even if it is updated, some SMS gateway providers cannot
guarantee that you can definitely send SMS messages to a mobile
operator listed on their network coverage web page. This is due to
the fact that an SMS message may be routed to other gateways not
controlled directly by the SMS gateway providers themselves.
addition, it should be noted that for some SMS gateway providers, SMS
messages cannot reach mobile phone numbers that have been ported
between mobile operators.
SMS gateway providers give new users a few free SMS messages. You can
use them to test the SMS gateway provider's network coverage.
6. How good is the
SMS gateway provider's network quality?
few SMS gateway providers offer a very low price per SMS message, but
their network quality is poor and an SMS message may not reach its
destination, or it may only reach the destination after a long delay.
So, remember to test an SMS gateway provider's network quality. Many
SMS gateway providers offer a small amount of free SMS messages to
new users. You can use them to test the network quality.
SMS gateway providers offer several message routing options. You can
decide whether to route SMS messages through more reliable but more
expensive networks, or less reliable but cheaper networks.
7. Is the protocol
/ interface you intend to use supported by the SMS gateway?
/ interfaces commonly supported by SMS gateway providers for sending
and receiving SMS messages include:
It is the most commonly supported protocol for sending and receiving
SMS messages. It is very simple to use.
(HTTP + SSL encryption). Data transmitted over HTTP is not
secure. If you do not want your data to be seen by others on the
Internet, you should use HTTPS instead. With HTTPS, data are
encrypted before transmitting over the Internet, thus protecting the
data from eavesdropping.
over HTTP / HTTPS. One or more SMS messages are put in an XML
file and uploaded to the SMS gateway provider's server. XML over
HTTP / HTTPS is a better choice than HTTP / HTTPS for sending bulk
SMS messages since it enables the submission of a large amount of
SMS messages in a single HTTP request.
(email to SMS / SMS to email). Choose SMTP if you want to send
or receive SMS messages in the form of email.
One or more SMS messages are put in a text file and uploaded to the
SMS gateway provider's FTP server. Like XML over HTTP / HTTPS, FTP
is a better choice than HTTP / HTTPS for sending bulk SMS messages
since it enables the submission of a large amount of SMS messages in
a single upload.
The SMPP protocol is usually used by advanced users. It is a binary
protocol for communicating with SMSCs (SMS centers) and SMS
gateways. SMPP is suitable for sending and receiving bulk SMS
SMS gateway provider usually supports only a subset of the above
protocols / interfaces. A few SMS gateway providers also provide
their users a COM object free of charge. You can integrate the COM
object into your ASP pages or Microsoft Windows-based programs (COM
is a Microsoft technology) and call the methods of the COM object to
submit SMS messages to the SMS gateway.
8. Is the SMS
gateway provider's API well documented and easy to use? Is there any
sample code provided?
APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) and sample code are
invaluable to developers. They can help save a lot of development
good use of the API documentation during the SMS gateway provider
selection process is to check whether an SMS gateway provider
supports a particular feature required by your SMS application. For
example, to find out whether an SMS gateway provider supports the
sending of concatenated SMS messages, you can check the API
documentation to see if there is a description of the commands and
parameters for sending concatenated SMS messages.
SMS gateway providers require you to register an account or make a
purchase before you can download the API documentation or sample code
from their web site. Such SMS gateway providers are less preferable.
9. What payment
options does the SMS gateway provider offer?
often SMS messages or credits are purchased from a web site. So, most
SMS gateway providers support online credit card payment. Some also
accept PayPal, check payment, direct deposit or wire transfer.
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