Light Reading

Bandwidth Brings MMS to Voice App World

Carol Wilson

Bandwidth is offering voice app providers new messaging options that move them closer to being a complete replacement for traditional wireless voice service.

The wholesaler is offering phone numbers that are enabled for MMS -- or multimedia messaging service -- and for short-code messages, as well as SMS-enabled toll-free numbers that let consumers send text messages to a toll-free number for customer support or information. (See Bandwidth Targets OTT Apps With New Messaging.)

The services are available for app developers that want their voice apps to appear much more like a regular wireless voice service, says Jason Sommerset, director of product development at .

Today, MMS capabilities are limited to consumers using the same voice app, creating a walled garden of connections, he says. But by offering MMS-capable phone numbers to voice app providers, Bandwidth will allow them to offer their consumers the ability to send video or picture messages to anyone else, as wireless consumers do today.

"A capability like this will start to make them more of an alternative to traditional voice," Sommerset says. "Today we don't consider them a true alternative. Internationally they are more competitive, but here in the US, they are mostly an add-on service."

Bandwidth was able to use its own wireless subsidiary, Republic Wireless , to work out the ecosystem and the use case for supporting this kind of messaging from a voice app, Sommerset says. The technology isn't new, but getting partners to work together and recognize the value to end consumers is a significant change.

Bandwidth does have some voice app providers on its customer roll and is looking to add more, he adds. The company believes the additional messaging capabilities, for MMS, short codes and SMS to toll-free numbers, will be a product differentiator for Bandwidth in reaching more voice app providers and for those providers in reaching more consumers.

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

(4)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
User Rank: Light Sabre
6/28/2014 | 5:20:29 AM
RE: SMS or Data
Indeed the additional messaging capabilities for MMS and SMS to toll free numbers will have a great impact on bandwidth, application providers as well as consumers around the world. The good thing is that bandwidth allows application providers to offer their consumers benefits such as the ability to send video messages, picture texts just like wireless consumers do nowadays. This technology has been there, just that innovators have come yup withy new ideas and techniques to make it more effective and efficient.
User Rank: Light Sabre
6/28/2014 | 4:31:50 AM
Re: SMS or data
Isn't the text tariff so cheap that it really does not matter? After all customer service requests by any single customer are far and few. So its not high volume high cost traffic anyways! Or am I missing something here?
Carol Wilson
Carol Wilson,
User Rank: Blogger
6/26/2014 | 10:29:51 PM
Re: SMS or data
It's for SMS messages to toll-free numbers - so customer service queries and other stuff can be done by text.
User Rank: Light Sabre
6/26/2014 | 6:49:01 PM
SMS or data
Is this for toll-free SMS? Or is this like 'sponsored data' ?
From The Founder
The comms industry is rallying to the cause of open, independent interoperability testing.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
LRTV Documentaries
The Business Case Challenge for NFV

10|7|15   |   03:47   |   (0) comments

Virtual CPE is one of the early success stories for network functions virtualization, as service providers are finding flexible, programmable CPE solves a lot of logistics problems and reduces their cost. But even here, Masergy Communications faced a business case challenge, says CTO Tim Naramore.
LRTV Interviews
JT Offers Some Gigabit Lessons

10|7|15   |   4:08   |   (0) comments

Barna Kutvolgyi, managing director, Global Consumer, at JT, the incumbent operator on the island of Jersey, talks about how other service providers can learn from his company's gigabit broadband rollout experiences.
LRTV Interviews
AT&T's Chiosi on the Potential of Open Source

10|6|15   |   06:27   |   (0) comments

AT&T Distinguished Network Architect Margaret T. Chiosi talks to Light Reading's Carol Wilson about the potential for open source technology to liberate communications service providers.
LRTV Interviews
Network Security in a Gigabit World

10|6|15   |   05:52   |   (0) comments

Masergy's James Harrison talks about some of the network security and data center issues network operators need to consider as they expand their broadband services portfolios.
LRTV Documentaries
Telefónica: In Search of Virtual Simplicity

10|5|15   |   07:30   |   (0) comments

Francisco-Javier Ramon Salguero, head of Telefónica's NFV initiative, admits virtualization initially means greater complexity, but with the right abstraction layer, it is possible to create a services-driven network architecture. He explains how Telefónica's current trials and initiatives are aimed at doing that, and what his company and other carriers need to ...
LRTV Interviews
Gigabit Europe Takeaways

10|5|15   |   03:47   |   (0) comments

Participants from the inaugural Gigabit Europe event in Munich share their key takeaways from the conference.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Intel Urges Women to Take Advantage of Their Seat at the Table

10|5|15   |   4:27   |   (1) comment

Have inclusive and constructive conversations, attach a bigger meaning to your work and get involved in the cause, Intel's Monique Hayward advises women in comms.
LRTV Interviews
BT Updates on Plans

10|2|15   |   03:16   |   (2) comments

Peter Bell, CIO at Openreach, the access network division at UK incumbent BT, provides an update on the operator's trials and how Openreach is planning to deploy the broadband technology in its street cabinets.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Sonus Shakes Up SD-WAN

10|2|15   |   7:22   |   (0) comments

Sonus CTO Kevin Riley sat down with Light Reading to discuss the trajectory of the company, its SDN ambitions and why Sonus is taking a market-disruptive approve to SD-WAN.
LRTV Interviews
CityFibre's Gigabit Vision

10|1|15   |   03:18   |   (1) comment

Mark Collins, director of Strategy & Public Affairs at competitive UK city network operator CityFibre, talks about his company's plans to help build Gigabit Cities.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Automate, Scale & Create With Juniper's vCPE Solution

10|1|15   |   6:34   |   (0) comments

Join Kireeti Kompella, Juniper Networks CTO, and Steve Saunders, Light Reading Founder and CEO, as they discuss Juniper Networks' approach to NFV showcased with a turnkey vCPE solution, which demonstrates how service providers can use automation to rapidly deploy services.
LRTV Interviews
Gigabit Europe: Day 1 Takeaways

9|29|15   |   05:47   |   (5) comments

Light Reading's Ray Le Maistre and Iain Morris sup a beer and discuss some of the key takeaways from the first day of Gigabit Europe 2015.
Upcoming Live Events
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
November 17, 2015, Santa Clara, California
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
All Upcoming Live Events
Communication service providers realize that an ICT transformation is critical to their long-term survival, but most haven't yet committed to making it happen.
Hot Topics
Verizon's Go90 Is Live – Will Anyone Watch?
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 10/1/2015
Eurobites: Dunroamin'
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 10/2/2015
M&A Speculation Swirls Around Juniper
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 10/6/2015
Cisco's Chambers Rules Out Political Bid
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 10/6/2015
Sprint to Cut Up to $2.5B in 6 Months
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 10/2/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
With so many new and exciting communications technologies now under development, it's easy to get caught up in the industry's escalating hype cycle. That's why the ...
Last week saw a big day in the 15-year history of Light Reading when Editor-in-Chief Ray Le Maistre and I were invited to interview the Deputy Chairman and Rotating ...
Cats with Phones
Hold My Calls, Indefinitely Click Here