VoIP Features

MMS vs SMS? VoIP is Better

Written by Jason
October 13, 2022
5 Mins Read

VoIP service providers are a less expensive – and more convenient – option for MMS messaging. VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol, and essentially means sending messages over the internet rather than cellular frequencies.

In this article, you’ll learn why using a virtual phone number is a better option for MMS messaging, and how prices compare to standard carriers.

What is SMS?

SMS stands for Short Message Service. It’s the format used when you want to send a “normal” text message – one that doesn’t contain any images or other media. When you send a text message on your phone using its standard messaging app, it’ll be an SMS.  Other than normal personal use, businesses often use SMS messaging to communicate with their customers. This could be for:

  • Confirming appointments
  • Notification of sales and offers
  • Business updates
  • Event invitations

SMS messages are ideal for these because it’s easy to set up large messaging chains to customer bases. Plus, all phones of all ages can receive SMS messages. You might run into issues when using Unicode symbols, but basic text messages are pretty much universal technology.  

What’s MMS Messaging?

MMS stands for Multimedia Message Service. As the name suggests, it’s the format used to send images, videos, audio, and GIFs. These messages don’t have a standard character limit, and you generally don’t need to select the format – your phone should do it for you. As with SMS messages, MMS messaging can be used for personal or business messages. Companies might use MMS to send images of products or services to their customers to help drive traffic for a sale or event.  While most smartphones should automatically be MMS enabled, you might need to turn the function on. Regardless of the type of phone you have, you should find the option in the Settings menu.  On iPhone, open the Messages settings and under the SMS/MMS heading, you can switch on MMS messaging. On Android, it should be enabled by default. If not, go to Access Point Names, tap Menu, and choose Reset to Default.

MMS vs. SMS – Differences

The main difference between SMS and MMS messaging is fairly obvious: MMS messages send media, whereas SMS just sends text. However, there are other differences:

  • SMS messages are limited to 160 characters per message, but your phone will automatically string several together if you go over this limit.
  • MMS messages allow you to embed media into the text message, whereas SMS can only embed media via a link.
  • MMS is generally believed to drive customer engagement more from a business perspective, but SMS is more common due to its lower cost and ease of use.

SMS and MMS on Android and iPhone

MMS messaging is typically enabled by default on Android phones, but this isn’t always the case on iPhones. This is because iPhones use iMessage, which attempts to fulfill the same functions as SMS and MMS messaging.  As you might know if you’re an iPhone user, you can only send iMessages to other Apple users. It sends the messages over data networks or WiFi rather than standard cellular networks. An iMessage shows up blue on your phone, whereas a standard SMS or MMS (sent to non-Apple users) shows up green.

SMS vs. MMS Messaging – Pricing

The biggest difference between SMS and MMS messages is the price. It should come as no surprise that MMS messages are more expensive. This is because you’re sending much larger amounts of data than a standard text message, which is generally very small.

Although prices vary between carriers, an MMS message is typically 3-5 times more expensive than an SMS. However, most carriers will offer unlimited SMS and MMS deals on their plans in the US. It’ll be worth checking whether your deal includes MMS messages, as it’s not always the case. Just because a deal includes SMS doesn’t mean it’ll also include MMS due to the price difference.

Textr Go – like other VoIP service providers – offers messaging bundles on its plans. However, the pricing structure is much simpler than with other providers. For example, its plans range from 100 SMS and MMS a month to unlimited options. You can set up a virtual phone number in Canada, the US or UK, and choose a plan based on your needs.

You can set up your payment method to get Textr Go coins, which function as credit for your plan. But you can also get these by watching ads, theoretically meaning you can get free texts and minutes this way. There are always ways to get a free virtual phone number to help you keep the cost down.

Why VoIP is a Better Option

VoIP is a better option for sending MMS messages – and for other phone services – because it generally works out cheaper. For example, using Textr Team, you can text and call in the same app, and play voicemail. The app lets you set up a virtual phone number, or several if you need them. Finally, you can manage contacts within the app, giving you all the services needed for easy communication.

Sending MMS messages is super easy with the Textr Go app. Simply do the following:

  1. Open My Chats in the menu.
  2. Find the contact you want to message in the Messages menu.
  3. Click the photo icon (in the bottom left corner).
  4. Add your photo and it’ll be automatically sent.

It’s as easy as that!

Better yet, setting up a virtual phone number with Textr Team lets you talk and text nationwide in the US and Canada quickly and easily. The difference with a virtual phone number is that it’s not tied to your phone’s SIM, meaning you can even use it from a computer that has Textr installed.

So, if you run a business that sends SMS and MMS messages to customers, try Textr Team to see how it can make your life easier. You get all the features described above, and customer tagging and other settings, to make business communication simple.

Download it for Android, iOS and web browsers today.

About the Writer

Written by Jason

B2B marketing specialist with expertise in lead generation through text messaging. Unlock your business potential with his proven strategies.