MMS Conversion to SMS With Web Link

Posted by on Oct 23, 2008 in Support Blog

Topic Keywords:

When using the NowSMS MMSC, one of the MMS routing options is to convert an MMS message to an SMS message with a web link.

This setting is most often used in operator MMSC configurations for one or more of the following configurations:

1.) Delivering an MMS message to a mobile phone that does not support MMS. (This is most frequently used in conjunction with auto-provisioning, where MMS compatible phones are automatically provisioned on the NowSMS MMSC. For more information on auto-provisioning, please see http://www.nowsms.com/support/bulletins/tb-nowsms-002.htm.)

2.) Delivering an MMS message to an international recipient for which there is no available MMS interconnection.

3.) It is also possible to configure a delay period where any pending MMS messages are converted to SMS messages with a web link if it is not retrieved within a configurable timeout.

This article will describe configuration settings relevant to one or more of these scenarios.

Sending MMS Message – Convert to SMS with Web Link

The “MMSC Routing” page of the NowSMS configuration defines all external routes for MMS message delivery.

The NowSMS MMSC will always perform direct MMS delivery as an MMSC for any subscribers that are registered with the MMSC. These subscribers could be manually or automatically provisioned, and they will be listed on the “MMSC Users” page of the NowSMS configuration.

Routing for MMS message recipients that are not subscribers of the MMSC is defined on the “MMSC Routing” page of the NowSMS configuration.

The routing type “Convert to SMS with Web Link” defines that any MMS messages sent via this route should be converted to an SMS message that includes a link to a web page where the recipient can go to retrieve the content of the MMS message.

For example, when sending an MMS message to a recipient that does not have an MMS compatible phone, or to an international recipient to which there is no available MMS interconnection, the recipient can instead receive an SMS message similar to the following:

Multimedia message from +4477777777. To view, go to http://mms.operator.com, and enter code number 1234.

The recipient can then navigate to the web link using a WAP browser on a mobile phone, or a web browser on a PC. They will be prompted for their phone number and the code number that was supplied in the SMS message. After entering that information, the message content will be displayed in the browser.

Frequently, this type of route is configured as a default route, which means that this route is used if a recipient was not in the “MMSC Users” list, and not covered by a recipient address mask in another “MMSC Routing” definition.

The following configuration settings are required for this type of routing:

“Local Server Port” specifies an available port number on the PC running NowSMS which will be used to accept connections from recipients who are attempting to connect in to retrieve MMS messages over the web interface. This port number must be different from other port numbers configured for use by NowSMS. This port must be unique, because the only functionality provided through this interface is MMS message retrieval over the web interface. Other NowSMS ports will likely have restricted access via a firewall, however this port needs to be open to the outside world to allow these types of messages to be retrieved.

“Local Server URL” specifies the externally accessible URL that recipients will access to connect to the “Local Server Port” on the MMSC. This setting will default to the “Local Host Name or IP Address” configured for the MMSC, and the “Local Server Port”. However, if you are remapping the address and port via a firewall, you should specify the external host name (and port if required) in this field. Keep in mind that some users may be restricted from retrieving content from non-standard web server ports.

“SMS Message Text” is a template for the SMS text message that will be sent out to recipients. This text should consist only of characters that are part of the default GSM character set. And it should include the following replaceable text parameters:

@@PhoneNumber@@ will be replaced with the phone number of the message sender.
@@Server@@ will be replaced with the value configured for “Local Server URL”.
@@Code@@ will be replaced with a code number that the recipient must enter in order to retrieve the MMS message content.

The default text for this message is:

“Multimedia message from @@PhoneNumber@@. To view, go to @@Server@@ and enter code number @@Code@@.”

“Use MMS Sender as SMS Sender” – This option specifies that the SMS message that is sent out should use the sender address from the original MMS sender, if the original MMS sender was a phone number.

Web Link Template Files

HTML (XHTML Basic) and WML template files are used to construct the login page and message files generated by this facility.

These template files must be located in a subdirectory of NowSMS named “MMSSMS”.

The templates for the login page are LOGIN.WML and LOGIN.HTM.

The templates for message file creation are MSGTEMPLATE.WML and MSGTEMPLATE.HTM.

These templates can also reference GIF or JPEG files that are located in the same “MMSSMS” directory. The default templates make use of two GIF files, CLOSE.GIF and OK.GIF.
NowSMS will automatically load either the WML or HTML (XHTML Basic) template, based upon the capabilities of the device.

Converting to SMS with Web Link After a Delay

It is also possible to configure the MMSC such that it if an MMS message is not retrieved from the MMSC within a configurable timeout period, the MMSC will then convert the message to SMS, sending a text SMS message to the recipient, with a URL like that can be used from either a phone or PC browser, to retrieve the content of the message.

To enable this SMS conversion, it is necessary to define an “MMSC Routing” of the type “Convert to SMS web Web Link”, as described above.

Once that routing is defined, edit MMSC.INI, and add the following settings under the [MMSC] header:

UndeliverableRouteToSMS=VASPOutboundRouteName

Specifies the name of an MMSC Outbound Route that is defined in the “MMSC Routing” list, which must be of the type “Convert to SMS with Web Link”. By default, if an MMS message has not been retrieved within 120 minutes, the message will be rerouted to be sent as an SMS with a web link for accessing the MMS content.

UndeliverableRouteToSMSTimeout=####

#### is a value in minutes that changes the time period after which the UnderliverableRouteToSMS setting is applied.

For comments and further discussion, please click here to visit the NowSMS Technical Forums (Discussion Board)...