EBS: Everbridge SmartPath: Single SMS

Everbridge SmartPath: Single SMS

Everbridge SmartPath is a suite of features to ensure the reliable delivery of your messages. This includes the structuring of messages to optimize throughput in all communication channels, evaluating channel message delivery and message failure history, intelligent routing of messages to avoid potential delays or failure of delivery of messages, and recommending optimization of your message credit allowance.

This article describes the Everbridge SmartPath: Single SMS feature. For more information on the Everbridge SmartPath suite of features, please see Knowledge Base Article 000046117 - Everbridge SmartPath: Unique intelligent Delivery.   

Everbridge SmartPath: Single SMS Overview

SMS Message Example

Single SMS

One feature of SmartPath is Single SMS. This feature impacts only the SMS delivery methods (SMS [x] or One Way SMS).

SMS Delivery Methods

The functionality of all the other delivery methods are not impacted by the changes described in this presentation, i.e. you can still send long messages to email, voice, fax, and other paths.

Global Challenges

Today in Everbridge Suite

Today in EB Suite

Global SMS Challenges:

  1. Some mobile service providers delay delivery of messages longer than 160 characters.
  2. Some mobile devices cannot display long messages.
  3. Some mobile service providers parse long messages and deliver parts out of order - or not at all - and reduce comprehension.
  4. Some mobile service providers will truncate messages.
  5. Some mobile service providers will not deliver long messages.

After Single SMS is Activated

After Single SMS Activated

The Everbridge application will send a maximum of 160 characters to SMS.

The final length of the message will depend on the characters in the message, but the Single SMS feature is intended to maximize deliverability by ensuring the message is not classified as “long” by mobile service provider networks.

NOTE: In addition to addressing the technical challenges noted in the "Global SMS Challenges" section, a single SMS segment will help keep your messaging credits with SMS to a minimum.

Single SMS Functionality

Notification or Incident

Message Types

Single SMS capability uses only:

Standard message type (not Polling or Conference)

Delivery Methods

SMS Delivery method selected (SMS X or One-Way SMS)

Feature Functionality
Applied to all contacts in notification

Inbound SMS messages are not impacted by this feature:

  1. Responding via SMS, e.g. "yes" to confirm receipt, "1" for a polling response.
  2. Sending product keywords (e.g. "COVID19MA") or regulatory keywords (STOP, INFO, HELP)
  3. Sending unsubscribe request (STOP) or message resume request (RESUME)
Applied to Standard message type
  1. Polling and Conference notifications will be included after we have an acceptable user experience design.
  2. Applied to all Standard messages regardless of the value of the High Priority field.
  3. Applied to notifications sent from Everbridge Suite Manager Portal, REST API, and ManageBridge mobile app.
  4. Applied Incidents launched from VCC Console
Link to full message page
  1. Link will be https://evb.gg/[unique code], or https://evbg.eu/[unique code] if the notification was sent from Manager Portal using "manager.everbridge.eu", where [unique code] is a combination of alphanumeric characters different for each recipient. For example, the link may be https://evb.gg/n#6dlxxogggd.
  2. Appended only if message content is longer than 160 characters for GSM character set or 70 characters for non-GSM characters.
  3. Auto-generated by Everbridge application.
  4. Cannot be disabled by message sender.
  5. Cannot be customized or replaced with shorter words (e.g. “here”) (global SMS protocol is not HTML-compliant even though some phones convert a URL into a clickable URL)
Message content
  1. Title (not recommended for SMS message)
  2. Text Body
  3. Confirmation instructions, URL to message posted on Member Portal
Message confirmation
  1. Default footer included if confirmation requested.
  2. Short URL for Confirmations not included if message longer than 160 chars (GSM) or 70 chars (non-GSM); the auto-generate URL for Single SMS will enable recipient to confirm receipt from full message page.
Member Portal Publishing Option
  1. Link inserted in full message page.

SMS Message Parsing and Concatenation

A high volume of long SMS messages from many sources can and have congested mobile networks; some congestion incidents have delayed the delivery of messages for several hours at a time.

Mobile service providers will parse (or split) a “long” SMS message into smaller pieces if the message is longer than 160 characters (for GSM characters) or longer than 70 characters for non-GSM characters.

The mobile network sends the “pieces” of the message along with a header in each piece to instruct the receiving mobile device how to reconstruct the original message.

Device OS determines if and how to reconstruct the original message and display as one message.

  1. Some devices cannot concatenate the message pieces to reconstruct the original message to appear as one message on the device. On these devices, the message will appear as 10 separate messages.
  2. Some devices do not receive all the message pieces.
  3. Some devices cannot organize the message pieces in the original order.
SMS Message Parsing and Concatenation

Recipient Experience

GSM Characters

GSM Characters

If the total length of the SMS message is longer than 160 characters (including confirmation instructions),

then Everbridge Suite will truncate the length of message to maximum allowed for a single SMS, insert the link to the full message, and append the confirmation instructions.

before sending the SMS message to the mobile service provider.

NOTE: Link to full message cannot be customized.

Full Message LinkIf there is a full message link in the SMS message,

then the mobile phone will open the browser page to display the full message including confirmation option.

Non-GSM Characters

Non-GSM Characters

Mobile phone providers will parse a message into 70 character pieces if a message contains at least one non-GSM character.

NOTE: Bullets in messages are non-GSM characters.

Generated URL to Full Message Page

The generated URL to the full message page has the following attributes:

  1. If notification is not confirmation enabled, then the link will be https://evb.gg/n#[notificationKey], or https://evbg.eu/n#[notificationHash] if the notification was sent from the Manager Portal using "manager.everbridge.eu". [notificationKey] is a combination of alphanumeric characters between 9-13 characters long. For the techies out there, the possible characters used for [notificationKey] are: [a-z][0-9]. An example of such a link is https://evb.gg/n#6dlxxogggd.
  1. If notification is confirmation enabled, then the link will be https://evb.gg/n#[notificationKey]/[confirmationKey], or https://evbg.eu/n#[notificationKey]/[confirmationKey] if the notification was sent from the Manager Portal using "manager.everbridge.eu". [notificationKey] is a combination of alphanumeric characters between 9-13 characters long. [confirmationKey] is a combination of alphanumeric characters exactly 8 characters long. For the techies out there, the possible characters used for [notificationKey] are: [a-z][0-9]; the possible characters used for [confirmationKey] are: a-z][A-Z][0-9][-, _]. An example of such a link is https://evb.gg/n#6dlxxogggd/06r-EAJ7.

Links generated by Everbridge will always conform to one of the URL formats noted above. If any other link(s) appear in the SMS message, then that link is part of the message body of the notification and not generated by Everbridge.

To ensure the security of your data, the full message body webpage hosted by Everbridge at evb.gg or evbg.eu uses TLS 1.3.

Message Display Variations Depending on Device

Message Display Variations Depending on Device

Depending on the mobile device, the SMS options configured on the device, and the operating system of the device, the link in the SMS message may vary in how it is displayed. Some devices may display the link as part of the same message, some devices may display the link in what appears as a separate message, some devices may display a web preview of the link, and so forth. 

For example, on iOS/iPhones, the link preview option is only available if the sender is saved in the recipient's contact list. Otherwise, the link will display in the message without a preview option. For messages from Everbridge, this means that your recipients who have the Everbridge sender ID (see our SMS Status page for a full listing of sender IDs depending on the country) programmed as a contact in their phone's contact list will see a link preview, but those who do not will not see the link preview.

Rest assured that these are all display variations based on the device and do not affect how many message segments the SMS arrived in to the device.

Right-to-Left Languages

Right-to-Left Languages

This feature will also apply to languages read/written from right to left.

This feature will handle all SMS messages the same way in terms of limiting the number of characters displayed in the message.

For how long will the link to the full message page be available?

Response time frame has ended

You can configure the length of time the webpage containing the full message (linked from the short URL in an SMS message) is available for after the notification is launched. You can configure this in Settings > Organization > Notifications > SMS Options > SMS URL Duration.

For example, if a notification with a "Broadcast Duration" set to 2-hours is launched at 9:00am on Monday and the "SMS URL Duration" is set to 1 Day, then the full message webpage will be available until Tuesday 11:00am. After this time, the page will display a message that the response time for the notification has ended and recipients will not be able to view the message nor to confirm receipt.

Message Sender Experience

Organization Settings

In Settings > Notifications > SMS Options, you will see Single SMS enabled at the top.

New Notification Page

On the New Notification page (Notifications > +New Notification) at the bottom of the message body section, you should see a message about the SMS length. By default, this is 160-SMS and decreases as you type in a message.


 

This is also true with the Use custom SMS message option:


 

 

Incident Template - Outgoing Message

On the New Incident Template page (Incidents > Templates > New Incident Template > Outgoing Message) in the far right column at the bottom of the message body section, you should see a message about the SMS length. By default, this is 160-SMS and decreases as you type in a message. 

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