Quick answers to common questions

Messaging

How do people reply to my messages?

If you want 2 way messaging, you would need to purchase a Virtual Mobile Number or rent a keyword on our shortcode. You can find more information on each here.

Can I send international texts?

International texts can be sent out – please see our Network Coverage for more information. Some destinations may cost more than one message credit.

How long can a single message be?

1 message can be up to 160 characters long. It is however possible to concatenate multiple messages for longer messages (up to 459 characters). Most handsets will display these as a single message. Longer messages use character spaces to link together, as is standard with SMS technology – so it’s always best to keep an eye on your character and message count.

Can I track whether messages have been received?

Yes you can. Within the system you have a Reports function which shows you what messages have been sent to whom and when and the status of the message.

Can I send the same message to more than one person?

Yes you can. Fastsms has the ability to send out the same message to multiple recipients. You can also personalise each message similar to a “mail merge” operation.

How do I schedule messages to go out?

By default the message will be sent immediately. To schedule a message, click the Calendar button to open a calendar – select a time and date, press Enter and then click Send. You will receive confirmation that your message has been sent and credits will be deducted. Click continue to return to the SMS window.

Where do inbound messages go?

Inbound messages will come into your inbox within the system. You can get these messages forwarded to an email address, mobile phone number or URL link.

How many messages can be sent at any one time?

There is no limit, you can send as many messages as you like at any one time and they are usually delivered within 10 seconds.

Can the messages be seen to be coming from my company name?

You have the option to type in a text label – this can be up to 11 alpha-numeric characters long.

Can I send emails to mobile phone numbers?

Using our Outlook Mobile Service or Email to SMS features you can send text messages to any phone from within any email client.

Cost

What are the set-up costs?

There are no set-up costs or ongoing monthly fees, you simply purchase blocks of outbound text credits.

Is there a time limit for using text credits?

The credits do not have an expiry date and will stay on your account until used.

Do you offer a trial of the system?

You can sign up for a free account and get ten credits to try our service. The account is always free as are the ten credits you get for signing up. There’s no credit card required so you’ll never be charged unless you decide to purchase more credits.

How do I top up / buy more credits?

You can purchase more credits by logging into your account and clicking the ‘buy’ button, or feel free to call us on 0800 954 5305 to top up over the phone.

How much does 1 message cost?

Each message to a UK mobile number will use 1 text credit. Some international messages and messages to UK landlines may cost more than 1 credit but this will be made clear in your account. The more texts you purchase the cheaper they will be – please refer to our price list for more information.

Will messages still be sent if I run out of credits?

Once your credits have run out, no more messages can be sent until you top up – to stop this from happening you can set a credit reminder level to prompt you by email when credits are getting low.

What happens if a message is undeliverable?

If your message is undeliverable you will still be charged for this – our networks will try and send the message every 10 seconds for up to 24 hours.

Where do I find out how many credits I have left?

When logging into your account, in the top right hand corner it shows you how many text credits you have left.

How much does it cost me to receive a message?

It doesn’t cost you to receive messages and charges the sender their standard network rate to send.

System

What software do I need in order to use the system?

No software is needed. fastsms is a web based application that works through your browser.

How do I get inbound messages to my mobile phone?

By configuring your Virtual Mobile Number you can forward messages to a mobile phone number.

How quickly will my messages be delivered?

Fastsms has a 99.9% guarantee that messages will be delivered within 10 seconds. In reality virtually all messages arrive in about 6 seconds.

Is there a way of seeing how many messages I have sent in the last week/month?

You can run reports from within your account for that day, week, month etc. These can be exported as an Excel spreadsheet.

We currently have our own POS/ back office system. is there a way of integrating fastsms into this?

We can provide you with our API which details everything you need in order to be able to integrate our system with yours. For more detail and sample code please speak to our advisers on 0800 954 5305 or visit our Developer Zone.

How many people can log into the system at any one time?

Any number of people can access the system at any one time.

Is there a way of creating templates for messages?

You can create templates for your messages – please visit our Support Centre for a detailed explanation.

Can I access the system from different computers?

As long as you have internet access you can login to the system from anywhere in the world.

Do I have to be connected to the internet in order to access the system?

Yes, an internet connection is needed in order to access the system.

Can I set up sub-users in my account?

Yes, every user has the ability to add sub users at no extra cost. You can buy message credits in bulk and allocate them between the sub users and see reports on usage for each one. Full details here.

How secure is the system?

Our data centres are protected by multiple layers of physical security including fences, gates, biometric access, and manned security 24/7. The servers are also maintained to the latest security standards and are protected behind firewalls. For more information, click here to read about our data centres.

On the reports what do the different status messages mean?

DELIVERED – we have received confirmation from the handset that the message has been received.

UNKNOWN – we have been given no information from the network regarding the delivery or failure from the network.

SENT – the message has been sent to the network and we are now awaiting a receipt of delivery or failure from the network

EXPIRED – The message did not deliver to the handset within the time frame.

COMMAND_REJECTED – the number that the message was sent to does not exist or is incorrect.

COMMAND_FAILED – the same as undeliverable but for international routes

UNDELIVERABLE – the message has been unable to reach the handset. This may be due to the number no longer being in service or the number being incorrect.

Support

What if I need help or support?

We’re here to help you whenever you have a questions. We offer live chat and email support 24/7. You can talk with our helpful advisers on 0800 954 5305 during UK business hours. Depending on your question, you may find what you need in one of our business sector guides, SMS guides, user manuals or support centre. Check out our Learn more section for links to all the material.

Where can I find my login details and password?

When you signed up for your free account you received an email with your login details. If you can’t locate that email, please call the fastsms team on 0800 954 5305. We’ll get you your information so you can be back sending messages right away.

Can I become a Reseller of fastsms?

You have the option to Become a Reseller with a fully re-branded SMS system, or you may find it more convenient to join our Affiliate Programme where you can earn money by referring new customers to us.

Do you have a User Guide?

Our support centre is always updated with the latest features, tips, and instructions. You have easy access to it from inside your account. If you haven’t yet signed up for your free account, it only takes 60 seconds and you’ll have immediate access to all the information about our service.

If you prefer printable manuals you’ll find them here.

If you have any questions at all you can chat with us live, send an email or call us at 0800 954 5305.

Do you have a support team? What is the number?

To contact a member of the fastsms team please talk to us on live chat, email helpdesk@fastsms.co.uk or call 0800 954 5305.

Buyers Guide

How much does it cost to send 1 SMS message?

Fastsms is a credit based messaging system whereby 1 credit = a single 160 character SMS message.

Credits cost from as little as 2.1p each when bought in sufficient numbers (even less for very large quantities).

To send to a UK mobile will only ever cost 1 credit.

However some landlines and mobile phones outside of the UK can cost more than 1 credit so check with us to be sure. We are constantly looking for new high quality routes to send messages to other countries and so reduce the cost to all users.

Contact us for the latest available operators or visit our network coverage page.

Are there any hidden costs?

Fastsms is the first fully professional internet texting service with complete transparency of pricing.

Contrary to other providers fastsms have…

  • NO monthly contracts
  • NO monthly minimum purchases
  • NO charges for inbound messages
  • NO time limits on message credits
  • NO hidden charges
  • NO surprises

All fastsms solutions are free and readily available for everyone, including…

Fastsms also provide free technical support and advice by live chat, phone and email for every level of user, regardless of usage or money spent.

Are there any minimum purchase requirements or minimum monthly usage requirements?

Our only minimum purchase is 100 credits at 3.5p/credit coming to just £3.50.

Every user also gets the chance to try before they buy as each account comes with 10 free credits.

Unlike other providers there is at no point a minimum usage requirement – you only pay for what you use and you use as little or as much as you like, in your own time.

Will the purchased credits or SMS messages expire after a certain period?

Some providers will impose restrictions on when you must use your credits.

Fastsms credits have a limitless shelf life – they’re your credits and we would never take them off you!

How good is the SMS gateway provider’s network coverage?

Our network covers more than 500 mobile networks in over 200 countries. We’re always working with operators to add to our network so call us to find out the latest list.

How good is the SMS gateway provider’s network quality?

The fastsms network is housed in just one hop from the main internet backbone. You can learn more about our data centres here.

We operate a cloud of application servers and database servers to ensure maximum speed and availability. Our engineers are constantly monitoring both network security and performance to ensure the system is always available.

Fastsms only connects to the highest quality routes in the UK, with several direct binds to the UK operators to ensure maximum coverage, speed of delivery and reliability – this means you have the highest level of service with delivery routes that cannot be beaten.

Most messages sent through fastsms reach their destination within seconds and inbound messages are just as quick, regardless of which of our SMS solutions you use.

Is the protocol / interface you intend to use supported by the SMS gateway?

Sending via the API from within your application can be as simple as generating a HTTP request that contains the relevant variables and sending them to the fastsms gateway. This can be in the form of a HTTP POST or GET via your desired programming language.

The protocols that are supported by our API include:

  • HTTP
  • FTP/SCP
  • SMTP
  • XML

The fastsms API gateway has been implemented into many different business solutions including server monitoring & alert systems, contact management databases and many other advanced applications.

If your application already supports email you can integrate SMS without the need for the API – using the Email to SMS service you can effortlessly add SMS functionality into any software that already supports SMTP.

Is the SMS gateway provider’s API well documented and easy to use? Is there any sample code provided?

Fastsms provide comprehensive API documentation as well as sample code to anyone who requires it, free of charge.

You can visit our developer zone to get access or contact us for more information.

What payment options does the SMS gateway provider offer?

Fastsms offer a wide range of payment options to cater for every level of customer.

All major credit/debit cards are accepted through our secure online payment system or over the phone.

You can request an order form and pay by cheque or bank transfer with the order.

Alternatively potential users can contact fastsms to apply for credit and pay in a way that suits them.

Fastsms is designed to be freely accessible to every user, so they can choose a payment method that is right for them and their usage.

Is it easy to manage your account? Can you check the number of credits or SMS messages left in your account?

NetMessenger is the fastsms web based messaging interface – from here you can easily manage all aspects of your account.

You can set low credit reminders and top up your account online.

All accounts have the ability to create sub users and distribute credits accordingly. You can also generate reports on general and individual usage as well as communicate with these sub users directly.

Does the SMS gateway provider provide any free SMS messages for testing?

Every account starts with 10 free credits for testing (no payment details required). All you need to do is sign up online or give us a call on 0800 954 5305 to get started.

Does your SMS application require 2-way SMS messaging services?

Most users find 2 way messaging essential but there is no obligation to set up inbound messaging features.

However all you need to enable two way messaging is a fastsms Virtual Mobile Number (VMN); this is free for 90 days when you open an account with at least 1000 credits (otherwise £99 pa).

A VMN can be used with all fastsms solutions; messages come direct to your inbox and can be also forwarded to an email address or mobile phone.

How good is the SMS gateway provider’s support service?

The fastsms support service is free to everyone; we will do everything in our power to help our customers get the most out of their account.

Fastsms provide 24/7 support and advice by email, phone and live chat dependent on the user’s preference.

Fastsms also operate information resources such as a blog, FAQs section, monthly newsletters, user manuals and guides.

Click here to learn more. Alternatively you can email us or call us on 0800 954 5305