Flowroute Messaging API Overview

Posted on April 24, 2020

The Flowroute Messaging API allows you to give your apps SMS & MMS capabilities.

You can unify calling and messaging on a single phone number through one provider with a single API and enable the creation of contextual communication experiences. The Flowroute Messaging API will let you send and receive messages, and since you also need to read the text, the API accepts your message input to the phone number for SMS and MMS and gives you the messaging detail record, which includes the body of the actual message.

Flowroute gives developers the tools needed to integrate SMS and MMS into cloud-based applications and services and programmatically send and receive messages through the Flowroute messaging API.

One of the actions you can enable with the API includes customized routing. You can gain real-time control over how SMS & MMS messages are routed through customizable webhooks to ensure streamlined delivery at the account or individual number level. As mentioned earlier, you can also unify calling and messaging with one phone number using the Flowroute Messaging API.

Additionally, you can configure SMS & MMS functionality over any toll-free or local number you own immediately to send and receive SMS & MMS. You’ll get send and receive control to reply and scale your application in seconds.

Our message detail records (MDRs) let you review your detailed SMS & MMS statistics and records usage in real-time. You can receive detailed information that includes message direction, message status, billing info, timestamps, and the content of the message.

Some Typical Uses of the Messaging API

The Flowroute Messaging API is used extensively in the healthcare industry. Some examples include appointment reminders for doctors and other healthcare providers and prescription refills.

Doctor appointment reminders can be configured to send a reminder to your phone a few days before the appointment, a day before and an hour before. Reminders can be tailored to the optimal communication cadence that is most effective at getting people to the appointment on time without a human having to take an action.

Appointment reminders don’t have to just be in the medical field either. Reminders can be used for a hair appointment, a meeting with a financial advisor, or any number of appointments and meetings.  There are also marketing outreach examples for selling products like insurance. You may have customers who have bought homeowners insurance and you want to remind them to renew their policy. Other examples include big box stores that can set up awards programs and send messages to get customers through the door. Political campaigns can also use the Flowroute Messaging API to do political SMS messaging.

The Messaging API v2.2 allows you to send and receive SMS (text messages) and MMS (multimedia messages) on long code and toll-free numbers. Flowroute has many supported content types for MMS.

For outbound MMS, the destination mobile operator and device ultimately determine compatibility, however, Flowroute supports most common formats.

For inbound MMS, Flowroute sends the message attachments as they are received from a mobile operator. Most operators have a maximum message size of 1.5MB but can send payloads up to 15MB.

Limitations for sending and receiving

On the inbound message side, while we don’t have a rate limit for receiving messages, we reserve the right to block a number that is sending a large volume of inbound messages to any Flowroute phone numbers on your account where fraud is suspected.

Inbound Messages

  • When an SMS is received, Flowroute will make an HTTP request to the SMS Callback URL that you have configured in your Manage account. Note that we may still block a number that is sending what we deem to be an unreasonable number of messages.
  • For inbound MMS, the same general rules apply. We will make an HTTP request to the MMS Callback URL that you have configured in your Manage account.

Outbound Messages

  • By default, your Flowroute account has a sending rate of 5 TPS (transactions per second). This rate can be distributed across multiple sources and is metered at the account level. Additionally, you can configure a system that your servers can query to see the maximum throughput that they can use.
  • For outbound MMS, a sending rate of 1 TPS applies. In addition, the total size limit is 750 kB per message.

Flowroute doesn’t limit the length of the message for outbound messages. We may truncate it into appropriately sized segments and add concatenation headers if the receiving carrier has a message length limitation. If the carrier does not support concatenation headers, the message will be received in multiple parts.

For inbound messages, Flowroute will reassemble the message and deliver it to your endpoint as one continuous message if concatenation headers are received. In this case, you will be charged per message segment, however, the message will appear both at your callback URL and in the Message Detail Record (MDR) as one long message. If concatenation headers are not received, each message segment will be delivered separately along with a unique MDR for each received segment.

The transit path of an outbound SMS typically involves several stops before making its way to its recipient. While some carriers have minimal filtering mechanisms, other carriers use various methods including adaptive and Bayesian software systems to protect their users and may end up blocking your Flowroute number for any of the following reasons:

  • Too many messages within a time period
  • Mass marketing bulk messaging
  • Content that makes it a high match for spam

Flowroute offers SMS delivery receipts on mobile phones as a way for you to track the status of each SMS that you send.

Learn more about how to get started with the Flowroute Messaging API.

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