[VoiceOps] SMS gateway API.

Alex Balashov abalashov at evaristesys.com
Fri Aug 7 21:03:17 EDT 2009

Hi everyone,

Sorry if this is a little off-topic, but I thought I would tap the
enormous collective wealth of knowledge here.

I come from the fixed-line world, so I don't know terribly much about SMS
or mobile anything.

I have a situation where I need an endpoint to receive a fairly large
amount of SMS messages in something close to real-time and then be able to
automatically do something with them as part of a backoffice process, and
need to set up something rather quickly.

For example, an SMS message comes into some sort of device or service, and
this triggers a RESTful HTTP call (or SOAP, or whatever) to some agent
that does something with that data.

Speed is of the essence;  this rules out most SMS-to-email gateways
because it usually takes at least several minutes to receive the e-mail. 
In this case, that won't work; the delay is just too long.

Likewise, vertically integrated SMS gateway services that provide some
sort of interactive online "chat" window with an interface into an SMS
conversation won't do.  This needs to be development-friendly;  I need to
be able to write some code to do something with the contents of that
message post haste.  The other thing is, vendors providing those products
and services in this category charge a fair bit per text message, which
isn't going to fly in this case because there may be a dozen text messages
per minute or more, occasionally.  Something flat-rate would be desirable,
even if it's expensive (say, a few hundred dollars a month).

Lastly, I don't know if it's possible to get any kind of access circuit in
North America over which SMS messages can be received, but even if it
were, that's not really an option in this case due to time constraints. 
Likewise, setting up a GSM or CDMA receiver device registered on a cell
network - legitimately or otherwise - is out too, for similar reasons.

What it really comes down to is that I need a fast SMS data relay service
that handle a relatively high-volume at relatively little expense, and one
which can provide that data via some sort of HTTP or XML-RPC or SOAP type
API callback so that the data can be plumbed to an agent on my side for
further processing.

I have no idea if something like this exists, or if that's tantamount to a
request for magic.  That's why I'm inquiring.


Alex Balashov
Evariste Systems
Web    : http://www.evaristesys.com/
Tel    : (+1) (678) 954-0670
Direct : (+1) (678) 954-0671
Mobile : (+1) (678) 237-1775

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