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When building a successful mobile application, you pay attention to many things including its usability, design, and, of course, functionality. In fact, the set of features available to users might be one of the keys to creating an outstanding product. And, while providing the service that is important to your customers is essential, having an excellent communication is a crucial part of this process.
SMS & voice APIs are a must-have in a modern mobile app. If you are wondering what they are and which one is better for your business, this article is going to be your guide to choose SMS & voice APIs in order to help you make up your mind. Besides, we are going to provide you with key information about the biggest players in this market as well as compare some of their main features.
The main advantage of SMS and voice APIs is that they allow you to communicate any updates or changes to your audience instantly. This makes the process easier for everyone involved. Of course, an application can do without these features but it can be a beneficial addition to your product. Before we dive into the comparison of available voice & SMS APIs, we need to be on the same page regarding their usage. Below you can check descriptions of the main features and why they can be valuable for enhancing your business.
Many applications include verifying a user account using the phone number during the signup or password reset. So, the SMS and VOIP APIs can help perform this verification in an efficient manner.
The internal communication performed within the application is a great way of providing excellent service. This makes it possible to connect providers with the customers and vice versa. With the voice and SMS APIs integration, this communication process can be carried out with no delay.
Keeping customers up-to-date during the whole length of their experience with your application is a great practice. Push notifications can be triggered by some changes within the account, the order status update or any other actions. In order to send these notifications, integrating SMS APIs in your iOS app is necessary.
This feature can be a great deal in keeping your customers’ information safe if they need to contact the service provider and they are not willing to disclose certain information about themselves. This interaction from inside the app can be made possible by integrating VOIP APIs.
At times, some information will need to be communicated to the customers. That’s when broadcasting messages comes in handy. These notifications may be about some important changes you are about to implement, or have just implemented, any discounts, ToS changes. Basically, anything that has to be shared with a large group of people falls into this category. Such announcements require an SMS API to be integrated.
The differences between SMS APIs and voice APIs should be taken into account to see which one is a better fit for your business. These descriptions should provide you with an idea of why you may need voice and/or SMS APIs for your application. But the question how to choose one still remains. Let’s see what you need to know to make your choice.
Here are a few things you would like to look at first when choosing SMS & voice APIs for your on-demand mobile app.
Pricing. The most expensive solution does not always mean it is the best one. If a cheaper option has everything you require, do not hesitate to use it.
Reliability. Don’t hesitate to check the reviews or give it a test drive (if possible) to see how reliable the system is.
Geographical availability. This point might limit you in your choice as some of the APIs simply might not have coverage in your country.
Delivery reports. It’s not an obligatory option but it will definitely give you some great pieces of information for analysis.
Integration. Last but not the least point to consider is how easily can you integrate VOIP & text SMS in a mobile application.
Further description of each of the four API providers will give you a better understanding of their differences. Also, it will be more convenient for you to compare Twilio vs Plivo, Twilio vs Nexmo, or Twilio vs Sinch. We included some features which may be of interest to you besides the basic ones. To find out more about each of the API providers and check availability and pricing in your country, follow the links in the descriptions.
Each of the four companies has a certain set of basic options to offer their customers. The price for leading SMS and voice APIs, however, differs depending on the country. Each of the companies provides the clients with the ability to send and receive text messages and phone calls as well as to send notifications. The number of destination countries is generally not limited or the very next thing to that. Nevertheless, the list of countries where you can send your messages from depends on the company. At the moment, Twilio has the widest global coverage but it also has one of the highest pricing in the market.
Twilio has packages available for SMS, shortcodes, MMS, etc. with a preset price for a certain amount of messages.
Copilot option available. It is an AI-based function which helps you determine the best source for your messages.
Basic conference calls can be made for free and global ones are available for a very attractive price.
A two-factor authentication is available with a dedicated product.
Operates in over 150 countries.
24/7 support is provided to the customers.
You can find more information about all the features and pricing here.
Free incoming SMS messages
Shared shortcode provided for free
SMS numbers available in more than 35 countries
Voice numbers available in over 90 countries
“Per second” charge possible
24/7 email support available for free with a possibility of upgrading to a paid premium option
More details, as well as availability and pricing, can be found here.
Free incoming SMS for long- and shortcodes
Instant messages for up to 25,000 users per one month are free
App to app calls for 25,000 minutes per one month are free
Availability in 196 countries
Community help page available for discussion with developers
Free trial available
To check more about Sinch and their features follow the link here.
Calls can be recorded and stored for free
Free incoming SMS for long- and shortcodes
Real-time reports for messages can be shown
Voice numbers in over 50 countries
SMS numbers in 19 countries
24/7 support via online ticket system is available
You can further explore Plivo by visiting their website here.
Before reaching the final decision on which provider suits your application the best, you should look through the features available from each of them and mark those that are important to you. While Twilio seems to be the leader in the industry at the moment, it might make more sense for you to go with another option. Your choice should be made based solely on your current development phase and the budget available.
You might also want to discuss integrating SMS and voice APIs in your Android app with your development team. This could simplify the process and make it as flawless as possible to help you achieve the most benefits.