Introducing Plivo Rate Limiting & Message Queueing

We’re excited to announce the release of Plivo Rate Limiting & Message Queuing for outbound SMS - an intelligent queuing system that keeps you compliant by managing your messaging traffic based on local in-country regulations and best practices.

Many of our customer’s businesses require sending messages in bulk to customers & prospects. While being a very important communication channel, the practise has been subjected to much scrutiny in recent times due to potential spamming. This has resulted in operators and regulatory bodies around the world defining a pre-set limit on number of messages that can be sent out per minute from a given number. The business impact of this rate limiting could range from reduced customer reach, poor delivery rates to potential blocking of service for non-compliance.

Plivo’s messaging platform solves this problem by delivering your messages to downstream operators based on the type of source number used and the destination country. A dedicated queue is maintained for each of your source numbers.

This means that if you need to send messages using Plivo SMS API to a specific destination country at a throughput greater than what is available from a single source number, you can increase your overall capacity by simply distributing your traffic across a pool of Plivo numbers. The combination of Plivo Smart Queue together with availability of a pool of number means that not only you achieve the throughput required for your business while being within the recommended per number rate limits.

Current Throttling Limits

Source Number TypeDestination CountryDequeue Rate
US / Canada 10 Digit Phone NumberUS / Canada1 SMS / 4 Seconds
US / Canada Toll-Free NumberUS / Canada10 SMS / Seconds
US / Canada Short CodeUS / Canada100 SMS / Seconds
International Number or Alpha Sender IdOther CountriesNo limit

FAQ: Implementing Message Queuing & Rate Limits for your service

1. Do I need to contact you to get this enabled on my Plivo account?

No. Plivo Smart Queue is enabled for Plivo accounts by default.

2. How do I determine the current status of a message - whether it is in queue or has been sent out?

The status of messages which are in the queue is set to ‘queued’. The message is marked as ‘sent’ once it has been passed on to downstream carrier networks. Read more about message states here.

3. Are these the only rate limits that are applied to my SMS traffic?

You can send SMS requests to Plivo at any rate you wish. However, all messages received by Plivo are first put into the primary queue. Messages are dequeued from the primary queue based on the account level MPS (Messages Per Second) configured your account. Messages are then throttled for final delivery by Smart Queue based on the source type and destination country.

4. Will Smart Queue process messages in the order they were sent to Plivo?

Yes, Smart Queue uses an ordered set as its primary data structure. This ensures that your messages are never processed out of order.

5. How are long (multi-part) messages handled?

Multi-part messages are enqueued, dequeued and processed as a single entity at all times. The dequeue rate of a message is auto adjusted based on the size of the message in order to ensure that your traffic remains compliant regardless of the size of the message. Eg: If you send an 2-part SMS from a US source number, the message would be dequeued two seconds after the previous message in that source numbers Smart Queue.

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