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Why HTTP API is so much better compared to SMPP protocol

We clearly flavor the HTTP API to over the SMPP API for three main reasons – simplicity, speed and features.


Setting up an SMPP connection requires you to have special knowledge about the protocol and the amount 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 an HTTP SMS API takes just one day starting from scratch.

Messente also offers multiple HTTP API libraries in lots of flavors, starting with the PHP library and ending with a Microsoft.NET version. Take your pick.


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

A 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 the same speeds that only SMPP could deliver a few years ago. And keep in mind that using HTTP APIs is significantly easier for developers.

More features

The SMPP protocol is very strictly documented and there is not much you can do to add new features. The 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.


The SMPP protocol will stay for many years to come, but new users will mostly start implementing HTTP APIs for the sheer simplicity it provides.

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

Jaanus Rõõmus
2014-01-12 00:00:00 UTC