There is a new US standard for application-to-person (A2P) texting. 10-digit long code (10DLC) is now the norm in the US. Instead of sending Short Message Service (SMS) texts from shared short codes, US carriers have now approved A2P messaging messaging to originate from conventional-looking ten digit phone numbers.

The Emergence Of 10DLC

10DLC is the rebranding of ten digit long code phone numbers for US carrier approved routing. There’s a lot to learn as businesses manage the shift to 10DLC messaging. US carriers are already beginning to roll out administrative capabilities for this new standard and soon short codes will become obsolete. The US movement towards 10DLC requires more administrative overhead, but it will improve performance and reach.

Swift SMS Gateway has been a champion of 10DLC (aka long code messaging) for over a decade and its use for non-marketing related business and institutional traffic. Swift SMS Gateway has you covered.

Why Are Short Codes Being Eliminated?

Shared short codes have historically represented a cost-effective alternative to using a dedicated short code or other methods of A2P texting.

However, as we’ve noted before, carriers have struggled to stop bad actors from exploiting their joint access to message traffic on these numbers in the past. If a party sharing a number intentionally sent spam, or accidentally violated regulations, this infraction could have implications for all other organizations using the short code. As regulations surrounding A2P messaging from long code numbers are becoming standardized, the move is a natural next step in the evolution of commercial text services in the United States.

The Difference Between Short Codes And Long Codes

The most obvious and immediate difference between short codes and long codes lies in the appearance of the number. Short codes are between four and six digits long, while 10DLCs look like regular phone numbers that might belong to individual people.

Both are, or have been, used by businesses, but in addition to 10DLC messaging sent by text, The Campaign Registry (TCR) notes these dedicated long codes can also be used for voice calls. TCR also observes 10DLCs will be given higher throughput speeds from US carriers for your A2P messaging.

Should I Be Using 10DLC Instead of Short Codes?

The truth is the days of short codes are numbered. Going forward, the majority of text messaging with customers and contacts will be over 10DLC. While there will be a grace period for the transition, it’s a wise move to migrate your SMS campaigns to the new standard sooner rather than later.

SMS Use Cases For 10DLC

The good news is 10DLC is now widely recognized for the wide variety of A2P messaging use cases that the public demands. US businesses and institutions can now leverage 10DLC messaging to reach their clients and communicate many types of information with better support than ever.

What Are The Recommended Use Cases For 10DLC?

The Campaign Registry observes that organizations must still adhere to the CTIA Messaging Principles and Best Practices, but this note should serve as no obstacle for entities in several industries seeking to benefit from sending messages using 10DLC numbers. Some industry-specific uses include:

  • Health care: While medical providers may need to follow additional guidelines around patient data and privacy, SMS can be a great way to send appointment reminders.
  • Education: Text messaging can be an effective way to communicate time-sensitive campus updates for students and other community members.
  • Government: Dedicated phone numbers like 10DLCs can make notifications sent from local governments seem more trustworthy.
  • Automotive: Receiving mobile service reminders can help ensure automotive maintenance proceeds smoothly.
  • Transportation: Anybody who’s ever missed a gate change announced over the loudspeaker knows that getting the same notification via texting can make all the difference.
  • Hospitality: Waiting around in a cramped foyer to find out when your table is going to be available is totally avoidable if the restaurant can message you.

From marketing to periodic reminders and crucial, timely updates, there are a wide variety of different potential use cases for A2P messaging conducted over 10DLC.

US Carriers That Support 10DLC For Sending Messages

As of this writing, AT&T and T-Mobile are leading the migration. All US mobile carriers are adopting to 10DLC.

Swift SMS Gateway as a Direct Connect Aggregator (DCA) plays an important role in the implementation of 10DLC messaging. Swift connects to carrier gateways to deliver SMS messages. Swift SMS Gateway as your DCA, is appropriately registered and preparing to make US client traffic migration as painless as possible, with the easiest collection of client campaign registration that leverages our existing client administration to integrate seamlessly.

Which Carriers Are Participating In the Adoption of 10DLC Messaging?

All American wireless carriers have endorsed 10DLC as the new standard for A2P texting, but the administrative rollout of the Campaign Registry is in transition. US Businesses that rely on mobile message marketing or other SMS use cases should consider migrating soon if they haven’t already. Carrier fees have already started.

However, Canadian carriers implemented high surcharge rates on long code SMS several years back, and are continuing on without the administrative requirements of 10DLC. Swift SMS Gateway supports both; with 10DLC in the US and long code in Canada. For Canadian clients that send text messaging stateside, be aware that administration and vetting of your US traffic will soon be the norm.

How To Transition To 10DLC For Your US Business

If you’re ready to swap your short code for a long code that’s capable of A2P messaging, it’s easy to get started.  Switching to the next business text messaging standard will help promote an unimpeded flow of SMS message traffic for your customers.

How Do I Migrate My Existing Number To 10DLC?

Whether you want to start using 10DLC messaging from an existing long code or you’re interested in texting from other phone numbers, like your business’s voice line, it’s a good idea to coordinate with your text messaging provider. To use 10DLC numbers properly, you’ll need assistance to properly file brand and campaign information with The Campaign Registry.

How Can You Register Your Brands And Campaigns, And What Information Is Required?

Businesses and other organizations using 10DLC are required to file with The Campaign Registry. Responsible entities, including the brand and any Campaign Service Providers (CSPs), have to be registered, as must every individual mobile message campaign. Before you can send any SMS communications using a 10DLC, brands and CSPs have to share contact information and data for vetting as well as other details. To register campaigns, you have to select a use case and share additional information. Special use cases may require more significant vetting. These instances may necessitate further approval from the carrier or other parties.

Work With a Dedicated Partner To Begin Your Process Today

One thing is clear: If your business benefits from sending out mobile messages to your customers and contacts, it’s time to begin making the switch to 10DLC. Signing up with The Campaign Registry is essential, but it’s best to start with Swift SMS Gateway, as we are vetting all US traffic and providing campaign management on all our US traffic from clients. Contact our representatives to learn more about how we can help today, and as always, stay tuned to our blog for more insights about this ever-changing industry.