Textoo : iPhone (and now Android) app to send free SMS using web gateways

History of Textoo

It all started back in 2010, when I had written a PHP script to send SMS through different Indian SMS gateways (see blog post on this). I would go around different websites trying to publicize this PHP script so that I would get more hits on my blog as well. In some of the blogs I had noticed different J2ME apps which send free SMS and were quite famous. But none of them had ported their apps to iphone and android platforms. A quick search revealed only the 160by2 official app which can do this.
Then I thought, Why not make a small iPhone app which can provide a client user interface to compose messages and then send the message using my own PHP script which I had already made by then. Since then, I started exploring the Appcelerator Titanium framework which was a vry impressive tool to create iPhone and Android apps using plain Javascript syntax. So I applied for both iOS developer access and Android market access by paying 99$ and 25$ respectively.
Once I got through the membership requirements, I started coding the UI in Titanium. And within a few weeks, the iPhone app was ready. The app would connect to my PHP script which would send the messages through the gateways and then return the result back to the app. The app was quite simple and had only 3 views. “Compose message” where you actually type the message after choosing your contacts from the phone addressbook, the “Outbox” view where you see the sent messages, and the “Settings” view where you add the gateways and account details.
After uploading the finished app to App store and getting it approved, I tried making it a paid app for 0.99$ The first few days I received around 1-5 sales a day. But people started complaining about some bugs in the app. And also there were a few problems with the PHP script. So I decided to make it free after a week of sales, so that I can get myself some time to fix the bugs. Since then it remained free and I spent minimal time of enhancing the app and the app continued to be downloaded for almost 6months with an avergae of 20-50 downloads a day.
I kept myself busy working on some freelancing projects on odesk.com and never actually thought of working on the app itself. But one of the iPhone projects which I had taken up on odesk got scrapped mid way through it. I did receive payment for the effort I had put in, but the app was not complete and the codebase was never used anywhere. Instead of scrapping the whole thing, I planned to use in the next version of the iPhone app and started working on the SMS app again.
But this time there was a big change. The app wouldnt send the SMS through my server/PHP script, but instead will connect directly to the gateway website. This way the load on my server would be minimal, and the gateway website would be happy to see all the HTTP requests coming from different IP addresses instead of my server addresses.
So since then, I spent most of my free time in working on the new version of the app and the new version was named Textoo Pro which can be downloaded here

What does it do ?

Textoo connects to major free SMS websites like way2sms, 160by2 etc and sends your SMS for free. It is a multi-account group-SMS app which can be thought of like a pidgin for SMS websites. You add your account username & password on to your app and instead of you going manually to the website and sending your messages, the app will automate it for you. The main purpose of the app is to give back the native texting experience to the end user even when they wish to use free SMS gateways.

Update: Android app also available.

Read more / Download the app

Incoming search terms:

  • #1 written by Mahesh
    about 6 years ago

    hey..nice work!!! btw do you use php to buit this or just using xcode.. i was looking for the same logic but its a dailer..so need some thoughts..thanks!

    • #2 written by admin
      about 6 years ago

      It uses PHP on server side. Although it can be done just by using xcode too.

  • #3 written by nidhi budhauliya
    about 5 years ago

    *

    hey..nice work!!! btw do you use php to buit this or just using xcode.. i was looking for the same logic but its a dailer..so need some thoughts..thanks!