What is SMS?

Bill Day

Short Message Service (SMS) allows GSM-based mobile phones to send and receive short text messages. These email-like messages are of very limited length, often 160 characters or less.

SMS is widely available in existing GSM networks, with many text-based services deployed using SMS, especially in Europe and Asia. Similar short messaging systems exist in many CDMA and other cellular networks.

Many J2ME-enabled mobile phones contain SMS support. Since many mobile phones have an email address assigned by the consumer's carrier, programmers can use standard email tools and messaging services to send short messages to SMS/J2ME devices. Developers may want to take advantage of SMS for sending users update messages, for instance to ask them to download an updated version of one of their resident J2ME applications.

The J2ME MIDP Next Generation expert group is also considering supporting a Datagram API for MIDP, which might provide the ability for the J2ME runtime to directly interact with incoming SMS messages.

Learn more about SMS from the GSM Association, at: