SMS and sending messages

A friend of mine was implementing SMS text messaging in his application, in which a one way text message was sent to a user alerting them of some action.  I was intrigued, so I looked into what options were out there.  NOTE: I have no experience in using these servies or implementing them in my applications, so I cannot vouch for these solutions.  I imagine each has their benefits and limitations, which unfortunately are usually found during UAT or later.

One of the services my friend informed me of is Twilio, a cloud-based service that can send text messages for a very small fee per message.  Twilio has additional services, in which texting is included.  It has a comprehensive REST API, and a library for use in an application (JavaScript library and IOS/Android framework).

However, we can achieve texting to a user’s machine very simply through an existing mechanism: email.  Sending an email address to the provider can redirect the message to a user’s phone as a text message too.  There is a complete list of email addresses for providers at http://www.emailtextmessages.com/.  I also found another useful list at Wikipedia, which contains a brief overview of the format the message should be in.  Certain providers require different formats of the body message.

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