Types of mobile messaging

   
Pangolin's Interactive Messaging Unlimited system supports the reception and processing of these types of messages:

Each type of message is described below.
 

SMS: Short Message Service

SMS (Short Message Service) is the simplest and most common type of text message and is supported by a large number of mobile phones. SMS typically allows for text messages with a maximum of 160 characters per message.

Technical note: The 160 character maximum applies to messages written in English and some Western European languages, which can be represented by 7-bits per character. For other languages including some Eastern European languages, Middle Eastern languages and Asian languages which require 8- or 16-bits per character, this maximum is reduced to 140 characters and 80 characters respectively. Also note that some mobile phones allow you to create "concatenated messages" which actually can extend the maximum number of characters.

IMU fully supports all SMS text message types including 7-bit, 8-bit, 16-bit (Unicode) and concatenated messages.

 

Smart Messaging

Smart Messaging was developed by Nokia and is found only on Nokia phones. Smart Messaging allows Nokia phone users to create messages that have pictures, ring tones, virtual business cards and other types of non-text data, all within a message that is roughly compatible with the SMS text standard. In other words, although these messages may contain non-text content, they still use SMS text data stream to communicate the data.

The great thing about Smart Messaging is that it allows people to do simple picture messaging, but with the low cost, quick message transmission and high simplicity of regular text messages. By "low cost", we mean that Smart Messages do not cost the mobile phone user any more money to send than a regular SMS text message, and they can be sent in roughly the same amount of time as SMS text messages. By "high simplicity", we mean that the user interface in the telephone makes creating Smart Messages very easy.

IMU fully supports the Smart Messaging standard for text and picture messages. IMU discards any other content, such as ring tones and virtual business cards.

 

EMS: Extended Message Service

The EMS (Extended Message Service) standard was a collaborative effort of Alcatel, Motorola, Siemens and Sony/Ericsson, and this standard emerged as a response to Nokia's proprietary Smart Messaging standard. Since EMS was developed after Smart Messaging, and since it involved the collaboration of several manufacturers, it is Pangolin's opinion that this standard is better thought out, more flexible and easier to support.

The EMS standard allows for pictures, animations, ring tones, and other non-text content similar to Smart Messaging, but in addition, EMS adds the ability to format the text messages including the font size, font color, font style (bold, italics, etc.) and text and picture placement within a message.

Like Smart Messaging, the great thing about EMS messages is that they use the SMS text data stream for transmission, thus providing the low cost, quick message transmission, and high simplicity of SMS text messages.

IMU fully supports the EMS version 2.0 standard, including the ability to preserve text formatting and text and picture placement. IMU discards any content that is not related to text or picture messaging (such as ring tones).

 

MMS: Multimedia Messaging Service

The MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) standard includes the ability to create messages with text, picture, music and other content. MMS messages may consist of multiple pages, each page with its own text, picture, music, etc.

MMS is the newest and most complicated standard currently employed by mobile phones. Because it is so new, this opens the door to incompatibility between phone manufacturers and even between mobile carriers (i.e. the implementation and use by AT&T may not be equivalent to the implementation and use by Verizon, Alltel, etc.). Because of this, there may be "interoperability" issues between mobile carriers and between mobile phone models.

One clear and easy-to-understand difference is the picture resolution supported by camera-phones. Some camera-phones allow for relatively low-resolution pictures such as 352 by 288 pixels while others support 640 by 480 or higher. When a picture is sent from one phone model to another, it must be converted for proper display. This conversion is done by "trans-coders" at the mobile carrier. This trans-coder process currently works pretty well within a given mobile carrier but may not work at all across mobile carriers.

There is another downside of MMS and that is the size of the data and speed of data transmission. Obviously with high resolution color pictures, the size of the message is much larger than simple text messages (tens or hundreds of kilobytes as opposed to only 256 bytes). As a result, MMS picture messages take longer to send and receive. While a typical mobile phone might be able to receive 20 SMS text messages per minute, that same mobile phone may only be able to receive a single MMS picture message per minute. And since the amount of data is greater, mobile operators charge a much higher fee per message sent and received. While an SMS text message may cost only a few cents to send or receive, MMS picture messages may cost 20 cents or more. In any event, clearly this is the next generation of mobile data and thus one which will continue to grow in popularity.

The PRO version of IMU fully supports MMS. When receiving MMS messages, IMU retains the text and picture portions of the message, but discards other content such as ring tones.

 

Email

Email originated on personal computers, as a method of sending text communications over the internet. As mobile phones have evolved, many newer models now include the capability to send and receive email. In fact, when composing a picture message with a mobile phone, most will offer the ability to send this picture message to an email address as well as to a phone number (using MMS).

Email can often be a good alternative to sending an MMS message since it offers a user the same ability to send messages with text and pictures. For those with a mobile phone, the advantage is that sending a picture message to an email address may require less data communications and thus, it can be faster to send an email than to send an MMS message. Also, many mobile plans include sending email for free, but have a charge associated with sending an MMS message.

The disadvantage is that it can be more tedious to spell out an email address using the keypad on standard mobile phones, because you must triple-tap the letters to spell the email address. In some parts of the world, such as Japan, email is the defacto method of sending text communication between phones.

IMU fully supports the ability to send and receive email messages including the decoding of ANSI text and Unicode messages, with or without picture attachments.

 

 

TECH TALK PAGES
 
 PHONES & SMS
 
Types of mobile messaging
 
Mobile phone standards
 IMU-supported phone standards
 
 
HOW IMU WORKS
 
What is Pangolin's IMU?
 
Connecting the modem
 
Moderating the content
 
Folder types
 
How voting works

 

 
   
Pangolin
A World Leader in Laser and SMS Display Software
9501 Satellite Boulevard, Suite 109, Orlando, FL 32837
(407) 299-2088, fax (407) 299-6066
mail@pangolinSMS.com