SMPP and HTTP are both great protocols for businesses and individuals that need an efficient way to transmit SMS messages. Ultimately you have to choose one that’s best for your needs. This creates confusion as to which one of them is better.
In this article, we will understand and compare both to decide which is the best option for you.
What Is the SMPP Protocol?
Short Message Peer-to-Peer (SMPP) refers to an industry-standard, open protocol in the telecommunication sector that provides a flexible interface for data communication and transferring short messages between routing entities (REs), External Short Messaging Entities (ESMEs), and Short Messaging Service Centers (SMSCs).
SMPP allows third parties, such as service providers, to submit SMSs or messages. This protocol is also used to enable SMS peering. It can transmit short messages like text messages, voicemail notifications, EMS, MMS notifications, cell broadcasts, USSD messages, etc. It’s one of the most used communication protocols because of its support and versatility for non-GSM SMS protocols.
Talking about its origins, SMPP was designed by an Irish company, Aldiscon, which was acquired by Logica later. It was created as a test to check how SMSC functions without Signaling System No. 7 (SS7) networks for sending messages.
Some of the common versions of SMPP are as follows:
SMPP 3.3: This is still one of the most widely used SMPP versions. It supports only GSM and creates a faster response for every message sent.
SMPP 3.4: It’s a more versatile and advanced SMPP version. It can add optional tag-length-value (TLV) parameters and supports non-GSM SMS techs as well as the transceiver. The transceiver is a single connection capable of sending and receiving messages. In SMPP 3.4, the exchange of response PDUs and SMPP requests between SMSC and ESME transmitters may occur asynchronously and synchronously.
SMPP 5.0: It’s the latest SMPP version that supports smart flow control and cell broadcasting. However, it’s not used that widely.
SMS SMPP Gateway: What’s It and How Does SMPP Work?
SMS SMPP Gateway is an SMS Gateway using the SMPP protocol to enable exchanging short messages and data communications to and from SMS-enabled devices like smartphones via the global telecommunication network.
Also, the computer sending the SMS is the SMPP client while the service provider’s computer delivering the message to the mobile device’s network is the SMPP server.
SMS Gateways connect a mobile network’s SMSC with SMS applications. Previously, SMS Gateways used to have hardware equipment with embedded radios and SIM cards. But modern Gateways transfer SMSs to telecommunication networks via an SMPP interface.
Let’s understand how this really works.
SMSs are generated from mobile devices like laptops, mobile phones, etc. that leverage GSM networks to send the SMSs. They have SMEs acting as the beginning and ending points of an SMS.
Now the challenge here is these devices can’t directly connect to enable communication. SMSC comes to the rescue here. It stores and forwards the messages to/from the ESMEs. And to complete the process of sending and receiving SMSs, an SMPP protocol is needed.
SMS Gateways utilize SMPP as the access protocol. Because of its versatility and support for sending and receiving SMSs, it has become popular and is preferred widely, especially for transferring SMSs in bulk.
An application or software program can interact with a mobile device with the help of SMPP working between the app and the SMSC located nearest to it.
So, if you are looking for a reliable SMS SMPP Gateway, SMS.to is a great option. It offers bulk SMS messaging for SMS hubs, enterprises, carriers, and aggregators via the SMPP protocol. Its scalable and redundant infrastructure is available worldwide and capable of sending 2000+ messages a second through its efficient systems.
Apart from SMPP, there are other protocols available, such as HTTP, XML, and SMTP.
SMPP vs HTTP
HTTP SMS API is an SMS API using the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) to establish communication between two devices or systems.
Both SMPP and HTTP SMS API are used for sending SMSs, but there are some differences between them.
SMPP protocol is an open standard, capable of sending a large pool of users through a TCP connection. Hence, it’s best for large organisations.
On the other hand, HTTP API is more suitable for individuals and small to mid-sized businesses. With that said, it’s a bit easier to integrate with almost any programming language and has less complexity than SMPP.
A developer can easily customize and manipulate a communication session for their application. However, doing this in SMPP will need you to set up a special server along with a middleware app to transfer messages to your app.
Furthermore, SMPP APIs involve seamless delivery reports with SMPP support while webhooks mainly manage HTTP APIs. Also, SMPP supports Unicode messages, Unicode flash, and extended SMS lengths.
- Less complex
- Easy to integrate
- Seamless delivery reports
- Versatile, flexible, and interoperability
- Best for sending bulk SMS
Cons of SMPP
- Incompatibility between various SMPP versions for submitting a response
- Formatting issues
- Connection setup can be tricky
Pros of HTTP
- Easy to customize communication sessions
- Flexibility in sending bulk messages
- More features are easy to add
- Best for SMME and individual use
Cons of HTTP
- Requires you to ensure security with SSL and HTTPS
- Managed by webhooks
SMPP SMS Software
SMPP SMS software refers to an application that can encrypt and transmit SMS between two different systems or devices.
Since businesses need to stay connected 24/7 with their customers and clients, they need reliable and fast software programs.
To solve this problem, software vendors are creating SMPP SMS software systems that allow their clients to build custom-made applications with interactive features. These software systems are more affordable than building a software system from scratch. You can use SMPP SMS software for a variety of purposes and is quick and convenient to use.
So, when you choose an SMPP SMS software, ensure a few things:
- Its interface must be intuitive and effortless to use
- Check the software vendor’s reputation in the market
- Their support team must be good
- It must come under your budget
Some of the best open source SMPP SMS software solutions are:
Kannel: Kannel is an open-source, powerful, and compact WAP and SMS gateway. It has served trillions of SMSs, mobile internet connectivity, and WAP Push Service and is used extensively worldwide.
Jasmin SMPP: Jasmin SMS is another excellent open-source SMS gateway that comes with amazing enterprise-grade features. It can easily be customized as per your specific needs for messaging. It offers strong algorithms and greater flexibility to specify rule-based routing. Written in Python, it’s suitable for scalable applications.
There are of course commercial systems in the market with advanced reporting, billing, and client management that come with hefty fees for the extra convenience.
SMPP Server Setup for SMS
In this SMPP vs HTTP SMS APIs comparison, it’s essential for you to know how to configure each. This will also help you make your final decision.
- You need to set up your SMPP server before using it. So, install a good SMPP server software. It can be open source or paid, which will help you send messages, binary content, and DLR.
- When installing, login to the SMPP server and SMPP client accounts. This will allow you to monitor the process of communication.
- Now, open the server details page and click the “Channels” node. Next, click the tab – “Test” and send your test message. You will be able to view the traces of the response from the SMPP server.
Choosing one among SMPP vs HTTP API depends completely on your requirements. For some, SMPP would be better while it would be HTTP for others.
So, go for the one based on the above guidelines and select a reliable SMPP SMS Gateway provider based on the features, ease of use, and budget.