Bandwidth SMS and Voice Integration


Bandwidth is a cloud communication platform that provides API based integration of voice and sms features into business applications. Here at Botsplash, we integrated Bandwidth for our conversation platform, to allow agents and visitors to send/receive messages and make voice calls. This blog is a deep dive to share with you how we implemented Bandwidth integration.

Getting Started

Before we can begin, the first step is creating a Bandwidth account. Next, create new application by going to the Bandwidth dashboard and navigate to the Applications tab. To continue, note the API credentials namely userId, apiToken and apiSecret.

Our technology is NodeJS backend and hence have used their NodeJS SDK. The business use case for our platform is that Botsplash clients buy phone numbers and use the same for sending and receiving messages. The APIs we implemented are

  1. Search phone number based on area code
  2. Buy phone number
  3. Send SMS/MMS message
  4. Receive SMS/MMS message

Note : Depending of your specific use case, you might require any, all or more integrations.

Bandwidth client and methods

//instantiating bandwidth-nodejs client


var Bandwidth = require('node-bandwidth');


var client = new Bandwidth({  
    userId    : "YOUR_USER_ID",  
    apiToken  : "YOUR_API_TOKEN",  
    apiSecret : "YOUR_API_SECRET"  
});
  1. Search phone number based on area code

The first API we need is to allow users to search for available phone numbers.

router.get('/search-phone-number/:areaCode', (req, res) => {  
  var areaCode = req.params.areaCode;  

  bandwidthClient.AvailableNumber.search('local', {  
    areaCode,  
    quantity : 5  
  }).then((numbers) => {   
    //return available numbers  
    res.send(numbers);  
  });  
});

This API will return 5 phone numbers in the given area code. We display the returned numbers to the user in the UI which they will be able to select in order to buy.

2. Buy phone number

This API will allow user to buy a number which the user selects from the previous search phone number API. It will take on the application Id and the phone number as payload body.

POST /send-message HTTP/1.1  
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8  

{  
    "phoneNumber"     : "+13233326955",  
    "applicationId"   : "{appId}"  
}

router.post('/buy-phone-number', (req, res) => {  
  var number = req.body.phoneNumber;  
  var applicationId = req.body.applicationId;


  bandwidthClient.PhoneNumber.create(  
    Object.assign(  
      { number },  
      applicationId ? { applicationId } : null  
    );  
  ).then((response) => {  
    //send user success response  
    res.send({  
      success: true,  
      number     
    });  
  });  
});

3. Send SMS/MMS message

This API will allow sending SMS or MMS message from the Bandwidth number that we purchased. For MMS, we simply need to send list of media urls in the payload body.

POST /send-message HTTP/1.1  
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8  

{  
    "from"   : "+13233326955",  
    "to"     : "+13865245000",  
    "text"   : "Example message",  
    "media"  : ["http://example.com/1.jpg"]  
}

router.post('/send-message', (req, res, next) => {


  var text  = req.body.message;  
  var from  = req.body.from; //number purchased from Bandwidth  
  var to    = req.body.to;  
  var media = req.body.media; //media url for MMS


  bandwidthClient.Message.send(  
    Object.assign(  
      { text, from, to },  
      media  
    )  
  ).then((message) => {  
    console.log("Message sent with ID " + message.id);  

    // save message sent record to db  
    handleMessageSent(message).then((res) => {  
      res.send(res);  
    });  
  }).catch(function(err) {  
    console.log(err.message);  
    return next(err); //error handler  
  });


});

In the above code, bandwidthClient.Message.send will send the message to the provided phone number. Once the message is sent, we need to keep this record in our database which is what “handleMesssageSent” function does.

4. Receive SMS/MMS message

Bandwidth provides option to add a webhook url in our Bandwidth application dashboard that will get triggered if an SMS/MMS is received to any number attached to the application. We will need to build this webhook url that can listen to messages received.

Response data received from Bandwidth to our webhook url:

POST /receive-message HTTP/1.1  
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8  
User-Agent: BandwidthAPI/v1  

{  
    "eventType"     : "sms",  
    "direction"     : "in",  
    "messageId"     : "{messageId}",  
    "messageUri"    : "https://api.catapult.inetwork.com/v1/users/{userId}/messages/{messageId}",  
    "from"          : "+13233326955",  
    "to"            : "+13865245000",  
    "text"          : "Example",  
    "applicationId" : "{appId}",  
    "time"          : "2012-11-14T16:13:06.076Z",  
    "state"         : "received"  
}

router.post('/receive-message', (req, res, next) => {  
  var { text, from, to } = req.body;  
  var attachments = getAttachments(req.body);  

  handleMessage(  
    text,  
    attachments,  
    from,  
    to  
  ).then((response) => {  
    return { success: true };  
  });


});

The above endpoint will receive the message payload from Bandwidth. We can have a function to parse the attachments to store the media in different server as required which is what “getAttachments” function does. We then save the message received to the database.

Similar to the messages, voice call engagement and forwarding could be enabled using the bandwidth SDK. For complete set of capabilities and integration details, refer to the Calls API.

Hope you have enjoyed this post and found it useful. It is very encouraging to read your comments and feedback, so please share in comments sections any thoughts you may have.


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About Botsplash

Botsplash, is an innovative, digital messaging software with the ability to connect agents and customers across any digital platform. In order to win and keep a customer’s business, businesses must be able to connect with customers in a meaningful way using websites, social media, text and email. Botsplash helps businesses adopt digital strategy with right balance on Live Chat and Automation.

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