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Why HTTP API is so much better compared to SMPP protocol

- 5 MIN READ - 12 Jan 2014

SMPP has long been industry standard for sending SMS over the Internet but HTTP API’s have quietly made it’s way to the top.

In Messente we clearly flavor HTTP API to SMPP for three main reasons – simplicity, speed and features.

Simplicity

Setting up SMPP connection requires you to have special knowledge about the protocol and the number of free software is also very limited. HTTP protocol tools on the other hand are freely available for almost all programming languages and they are extremely simple to use.

Developing your own SMPP client may take several months – using some free software may speed things up but will also have some limitations. Developing your own script for sending SMS messages over HTTP API takes just one day from scratch.

Messente also offers multiple HTTP API libraries in lots of flavors – starting with PHP library and ending with Microsoft.NET version. Make your pick.

Speed

SMPP had an edge over HTTP mostly when sending thousands of messages per day – but no more. Especially with the HTTP 1.1 persistent connections, protocol overheads have decreased significantly.

Quote from a study by W3 Consortium about the HTTP/1.1 pipelining (persistent connection):

HTTP/1.1 implemented with pipelining outperformed HTTP/1.0, even when the HTTP/1.0 implementation uses multiple connections in parallel, under all circumstances tested. In terms of packets transmitted, the savings are typically at least a factor of two, and often much more, for our tests. Elapsed time improvement is less dramatic, but significant.

HTTP/1.1 allows developers to use (multiple) persistent connections to achieve same speeds that only SMPP could deliver a few years ago. And keep in mind, that using HTTP API’s it significantly easier for developers.

More features

SMPP protocol is very strictly documented and there is not much you can do to add new features. HTTP API on the other hand is very flexible and new features can be added with ease.

Let’s say you wanted to schedule a text message – a reminder for example. You could not do that with SMPP but it is already built in to Messente’s HTTP API – just add one more parameter to your request and you are done.

Conclusion

SMPP protocol will stay for many years to come, but new users will mostly start implementing HTTP API’s just for the sheer simplicity it provides.

If you are starting with SMS messaging, there is no need for you to start with SMPP protocol – in my mind there is so much more to do with your time

Jaanus Rõõmus

Jaanus Rõõmus - CTO

Jaanus is co-founder and CTO of Messente and makes sure its wheels keep spinning and Messente always has a full tank of fuel.

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