SMS Least Cost Routing
On this page you can find out how to set up least cost
routing with Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway. You can read about the motivation, the
resultant task you can set for the program, how the task is solved, and how
the solution is tested.
You may want to use a specific GSM service provider
to send out a message, because:
- a GSM service provider usually charges less money for an SMS message
sent within its network than for one sent outside.
- one of the GSM service providers you use may charge less money than the
others for an SMS message sent to a foreign network.
- a GSM service provider may only accept an SMS message for delivery
to a phone number within its network when the message is sent over an IP SMS
connection. (This is often the case with premium rate SMS services.)
Task for the program
According to the considerations listed in the Motivation
section, you can expect Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway to decide which GSM service
provider connection to use to send out a message. The decision is based on
the telephone number of the recipient (the user the SMS message is destined
to). This is possible because you can identify which GSM service provider a
phone number belongs to. The identification is based on the pre-dial number
of the phone number. E.g., a phone number starting with "+3670"
belongs to the network of Vodafone, while one starting with "+3630" belongs
Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway can be configured to use a specified
GSM service provider to send out an SMS message destined to a recipient phone
number including a specified pre-dial number.
Then, according to the configuration, the sending process
consists of three steps:
- An installed user or application (called "John" in the example) submits the
SMS message to Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway.
- Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway makes a decision based on the (pre-dial number of
the) phone number.
- Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway sends out the SMS message using the GSM
service provider connection it has chosen (Figure 1).
Figure 1 - The program's decision and action
To enable the program to take the action described above,
you have to do the following:
- Install and configure 3 GSM service provider connections. Give each of them
a name, such as Vodafone, T-Mobile, etc.
- Configure the outbound routing.
To start installing and configuring a service provider
connection, click the Add button or the
Add service provider link in the Service providers panel in
the Management Console (Figure 2).
Figure 2 - Adding a service provider connection
After selecting a service provider connection from the list,
give it a name in the SMPP settings tab (Figure 3).
Figure 3 - Naming a service provider connection
Install and configure all 3 service provider connections.
For more details about the installation and configuration of
service provider connections, check out the
Provider Connectivity page.
Once you have installed and configured all of the service
provider connections, configure the outbound routing, i.e. set appropriate
outbound routing rules.
To start editing the outbound routing rules, click the
Edit button in the Outbound routing panel in the client
area of the Management Console (Figure 4).
Figure 4 - The Outbound routing panel
In the panel for creating a new outbound routing rule,
specify a regular expression as the recipient phone number for each service
The regular expression should look like this: /\+3670.*/
I.e.: right slash - backslash - pre-dial number in international
format - period - asterisk - right slash.
To enable the program to send out messages using any of
the service provider connections, set a fourth routing rule as well. This
is useful, as you may need to send a message to a network
that is not specifically one of the service providers in the example. Also,
it may occur that none of them charges less than
the others for sending a message. In the example this additional rule is
named outbound4, in which the other directives are specified as ANY.
If the service provider is specified as ANY, Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway will
send out the message using the first service provider connection to have
the free capacity to send a message. In a way, it may not matter
which service provider connection is used if they charge the same amount
However, it may well be important to send out the message as soon as possible.
The ANY specification for the service provider serves this purpose.
Make sure this "unspecified" rule is the last in the table. The reason for
its position will be explained in the Testing section below.
Now, your routing table should look like the one in Figure
Figure 5 - Routing table for least cost routing
For each service provider connection, you have specified
a regular expression as the recipient phone number, including the pre-dial
number belonging to the GSM service provider. This regular expression in
each rule ensures that the program will identify any recipient
telephone number including the pre-dial number as belonging to the service
provider specified in the rule.
For instance, if you send an SMS message to the +36703355678
phone number, the program will identify it as one belonging to Vodafone
(whose pre-dial number is +3670). This is because
the regular expression in the respective rule covers all phone numbers with
the +3670 pre-dial number. The local pre-dial number could also be 0670,
which is not in international format. In this case, you should also specify
a regular expression for the service provider connection in a separate rule.
It should look like this:
For more details about editing outbound routing rules, check
out the Quickstart Guide and
the Outbound Routing page.
The user in Figure 1 above is sending a message (saying
"Hello world") to a +36309678756 phone number.
When John has composed and submitted it to Ozeki NG SMS Gateway, the engine
will match the routing rules in the outbound routing table. As it goes
from top to bottom, the first rule the message is compared with is
outbound1. The regular expression in the cell for
the recipient phone number does not cover the +36309678756 phone number,
so the engine will go on to the next rule.
The regular expression in the cell for the recipient phone
number in the next rule (outbound2) does not cover the +36309678756
phone number either. Consequently, the engine will go
on to the third rule.
The regular expression in the cell for the recipient phone
number in the outbound3 rule covers
the +36309678756 phone number. As a result, John's message will be sent out
using the service provider connection specified in this rule.
When the engine finds a rule that applies to the message,
the message will be sent out, and the subsequent rules will be ignored.
Accordingly, no further copies of the message will be sent out. In this
example, the fourth rule would match the message: the ANY specification
would cover +36309678756 phone number, and it would use the
first service provider connection that has the free capacity to send out
the message. However, the outbound4 rule will be ignored, and the
message will not be sent out in another copy using "ANY" (the
first available) service provider connection. The message will only be
sent out according to the outbound3 rule, because it is higher in
the routing table and it matches the message.
In conclusion, you can see that Ozeki NG allows a
configuration of routing requiring the least possible cost for sending
out messages. The configuration requires the appropriate editing and
positioning of routing rules in the Outbound routing panel
of the software.
Making use of a regular expression in the editing process will result
in the program identifying which network the recipient phone number
of the message belongs to. This identification of the network
will enable Ozeki NG - SMS Gateway to send out the message using the
service provider owning the network. Accordingly, the sending will
be performed within the network. This will allow sending messages at the
least possible cost (or sending messages at all).
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