The most frequent question we hear from our SMS API customers is “How can I scale my application to send more messages?” and our answer is always the same and very simple — Powerpack.
What is Powerpack? You can think of it as a global routing and delivery system that spreads high-volume messaging traffic over several phone numbers for high delivery rates at the lowest possible cost.
Sending messages at scale and deciding which numbers to use can be a thankless and time-consuming task. To stay compliant, you have to be aware of things like carrier filtering, rate limits, and country-specific regulations.
Plivo has built-in logic that takes all of those things into consideration and automates the work for you, so you don’t need to devote any developer resources to the task. All you have to do is build a number pool for Powerpack, from which Plivo will distribute your outbound messages, and you can opt in to any of Powerpack’s automation features, including:
- Sticky Sender, which maintains the mapping of the “to and from” phone numbers so you send messages to the same customer from the same phone number every time, and ensure a single conversation thread.
- Local Connect, which allows you to match the country or area code with your customer’s phone number.
- Smart Encoding, which detects Unicode characters and replaces them with equivalent GSM-encoded characters when possible, saving you money.
- Automatic Fallback, which gives you the flexibility to set priority parameters by phone number type and assign some as fallback numbers, in case messages fail to be delivered. For example, if a customer is concerned with cost optimization, they can set toll-free numbers as their priority numbers, and assign long codes as automatic fallback numbers, to be used only in case of network outages or end user restrictions. If a customer is more concerned with deliverability, they can prioritize short codes and assign toll-free numbers or long codes as automatic fallback numbers.
Powerpack intelligently manages your numbers and ensures that your messages are delivered.
But what if you want to go deeper and specify rules for messages that are being terminated in the recipient’s carrier network?
In recent months, we’ve experienced a huge shift in the messaging landscape as major US carriers roll out their 10DLC routes to support higher messaging speeds and better deliverability for application-to-person (A2P) communication. And while 10DLC comes with a number of benefits, including higher SMS message volumes, lower costs than short codes, and better deliverability, 10DLC routes also incur surcharges, on top of the existing termination fees. Businesses may find it more cost-effective to send messages on toll-free numbers (source numbers that incur no surcharge in the AT&T network, for example), and may want to prioritize toll-free numbers whenever traffic is being terminated to users who have AT&T.
Similarly, the Verizon network issues surcharges for A2P messages on both long codes and toll-free numbers. The costs for each are similar, so a business might take other things into consideration, such as throughput rates and deliverability. 10DLC routes for long codes are sanctioned by mobile carriers and therefore are not subject to the same strict filtering as toll-free numbers, meaning they have better deliverability. In this case, a business might set long codes as Priority 1 under the Verizon network in their Powerpack. These kinds of adaptive elements means that Plivo customers have a ton more flexibility when configuring their Powerpack, and can tailor it to their specific use cases and business needs.
We recommend that all Plivo customers leverage Powerpack to reach large lists of users with just a single API request. Want to learn more? You can get the full story on how to configure a Powerpack, send outbound messages, specify priorities by carrier, and more in our Powerpack documentation.
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