Application programming interfaces make it easy to accomplish many tasks that would have otherwise been complicated to do. Text messaging is no different, which is why countless businesses are using workflow integrations that help them connect other methods of communication with their text messaging systems in order to streamline everything related to customer service.
Pushing Services to Their Limit
Short message service messages were never meant to do many of the things that they’re now asked to. Standard SMS messages have even been used to send novels to readers a few lines at a time, so it’s obvious that marketers are more than willing to push these designs far beyond what one might have considered reasonable.
Bulk SMS mailing systems can send out literally hundreds of messages all at once. Others have been designed to route incoming messages to a generative artificial intelligence application, which can respond to it smartly. Considering how much media attention has been paid to AI in recent months, it’s likely that this is quickly going to be one of the more attractive solutions in the short term.
Companies looking past the latest trends are leveraging the power of their text message API libraries to answer customer inquiries and provide shipping data. When individuals order something, they might get an instant text message that gives them a host of information about where the product currently is.
Depending on the level of graphical integration with the API they’re working with, it might be possible to send out periodic maps that illustrate the exact location of the package in question. Some have even proposed that this kind of use is becoming popular enough that some standards will have to be changed to accommodate future developments.
Updating Text Message Protocols
Although people might think of texting as a relatively recent phenomenon, the SMS protocol dates back to at least 1992, if not earlier. Radiotelegraphy and teletype systems go back to the 19th century and have their roots in even more primitive systems. Modern communications demands stretch these protocols so much that newer ones are being phased in. Wireless customers have often turned to private instant messaging programs to tackle their needs, but these don’t send information over the publicly switched telephone system, so they don’t work with existing text APIs.
At least one standard for Internet text messages has become so obtuse that it’s almost impossible to get modern equipment to interface with it. Code hackers have tried to keep it alive to some extent, but it’s so difficult to do so that even hobbyist programmers have largely thrown in the towel.
The rich communication service will come out on top. RCS messages leverage the power of the same telephone company central office locations as SMS ones, making it attractive for those who want to bend text messaging protocols to their will even more than they already do.
Unusual Uses for Text Messages
Individuals who don’t mind a little extra programming have come up with some very unusual uses of their APIs. Publishers have developed entire newspapers and magazines that are distributed via text message, which wireless customers can then read at their leisure. Journalists submit stories to these services, which then blast them out after verifying their accuracy. Stock updates and weather information have long been provided this way as well.
MP3 music and wave files could theoretically be shared between people who don’t mind packaging their work in a multimedia message. Television shows could theoretically get shared this way as well. Individuals who produce their own IPTV programming have found this an excellent way to attract a highly technical audience who may very well share their interest in a specific niche topic. Software updates can even be pushed down a text message stream if there’s reason to do so.
Customer service is something that too many businesses overlook, but a good API can leverage text messaging technology to serve customers in ways nobody thought possible. Engineers are always figuring out new applications for these tools, so you can trust that many other tricks are coming down the pipeline.
Author: Micheal Smith