Dibyendu Roy
Apr 18 · 4 min read

RingCentral now supports sending and receiving SMS with Toll-Free Numbers (TFNs). We are announcing the immediate ability to send and receive SMS using RingCentral Toll-Free numbers which allows sending at much higher volumes than standard 10 digit long codes (10DLCs). A primary benefit is the ability to send to many more users per day going from the CTIA P2P guidelines of 1,000 SMS messages per day per number to over 50,000+ SMS messages per day per number.

The Beta Program

This feature will be on public beta and we are accepting registrations to our public beta program. To register in RingCentral Toll-Free SMS Public Beta program use the form: https://goo.gl/forms/dcRKq6oT5M3RvBok2.

So what does programmable Toll-Free SMS enable your business with and why should you care in the first place?

The Basics

Before answering these questions lets first go over some basics

What are Toll-Free Numbers?

As per FCC “Toll-free numbers are telephone numbers with distinct three-digit codes that can be dialed from landlines with no charge to the person placing the call. Such numbers allow callers to reach businesses and/or individuals out of the area without being charged a long-distance fee for the call.

Toll-free numbers are particularly common for customer-service calling. Toll-free service has traditionally provided potential customers and others with a free and convenient way to contact businesses. Wireless callers, however, will be charged for the airtime minutes used during a toll-free call unless they have an “unlimited calling” plan.

Customers can also send text messages to toll-free numbers, so long as those numbers are “text enabled,” and businesses can send texts in response.”

Common Toll Free Codes are : 800, 888, 877, 866, 855, and 844.

Use Cases

Toll-Free SMS can power a number of popular use cases including:

  1. Customer Service: TF SMS provides you an elegant way to enhance your customer engagement irrespective of the fact that you are a small business or a large enterprise. You can use this number to let users text questions or Accept Orders, also your agents can reply using the same Toll-Free numbers.
  2. Virtual On Hold: You can use your Toll-Free numbers to text you for a service when they need, you can put the customer in a Queue, and when the turn comes, you can call back the customer.
  3. Voice and Text Interplay: Let your customers talk to you using your toll-free number and then when needed you can get back to them using text.
  4. Marketing and Branding: Enhance your company’s branding and marketing by reaching out to a large set of your customers with some discount coupons, holiday deals and updates from your business.
SMS Comparison Chart

Toll-Free SMS Features

  1. Send SMS from Toll-Free SMS Number
  2. Receive SMS from Toll-Free SMS Number
  3. Send a max of 50K+ messages/day/user without being blocked by the carriers
  4. Cover A2P (Application to Person) and (Person to Person Use Cases)

Note: With a RingCentral Toll-Free number you can also use the number as a regular PBX number with all the features which a powerful cloud PBX provides.

Let’s See Some Code

Our TF SMS API endpoint is the exact same endpoint that we have for the regular endpoint. So if you already have an existing App implementing our SMS API, then you are all set to use it for Toll-Free numbers.

Below is a self-containing code to in Node.js to test TF-SMS.

/* This Code is to Test TF-SMS */
const RC = require('ringcentral')
const dotenv = require('dotenv')
var RINGCENTRAL_RECEIVER='+XXXXXXXXXX';
var RINGCENTRAL_USERNAME='+XXXXXXXXXXX';
var phone_array = [Array of To Numbers]
var rcsdk = new RC({
server: 'https://platform.ringcentral.com',
appKey: 'XXXXXXXXYYYYYYYYYY',
appSecret: 'ABCCCCCCCCCCCCCCC'
});
console.log("The Server name is "+ rcsdk.server);const platform = rcsdk.platform()

platform.login({
username: '+XXXXXXXXXXX',
extension: '101',
password: 'XXXXXXX'
}).then(response => {
for (i in phone_array ) {
platform.post('/account/~/extension/~/sms', {
from: { phoneNumber: RINGCENTRAL_USERNAME },
to: [
{ phoneNumber: phone_array[i] }
],
text: 'pun'
}).then(response => {
console.log('SMS sent: ' + response.json().id )
}).catch(e => {
console.error(e)
})
}}).catch(e => {
console.error(e)
})

Provisioning Toll-Free SMS

In order to enable a Toll-Free number to send and receive SMS, it needs to be provisioned first. Please contact devsupport@ringcentral.com to enable SMS feature on your Toll-Free number.

The pricing will be $0.007/sms sent and received respectively. Also, the monthly cost for a Toll-Free number would be $4.99/month.

App

The App is published in our RingCentral App Gallery:https://www.ringcentral.com/apps/toll-free-sms-app

The codebase for a Sample App to Send a large number of SMS from your Toll-Free Number

The Sample working app

Summary

We look forward to developers and business like you take advantage of the RingCentral Platform TF-SMS and enhance and enable your business with the power of programmable communication.

Please feel free to leave your questions comments.

If you have not joined RingCentral developer program please sign up at: https://developers.ringcentral.com/

RingCentral Developers

Cloud Business Communications

Dibyendu Roy

Written by

Sr Product Manager RingCentral, passionate about technology and building products that can bring a step function change, improving peoples lives significantly

RingCentral Developers

Cloud Business Communications

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