SMS Character Count

How many characters can I send in an SMS?

Long Messages

A Perfectly drafted SMS message stays within the limit of 160 characters. Messages that are beyond 160 characters generally not preferred and advised. Though It's definitely likely to use more than 160 characters if unavoidable. In this case, SMS will be counted as a 2nd message. The receiver may see it as one long message or sometimes gets messages in parts depending on different providers.

This is very important to know that when your message is going beyond 160 characters, its breaking into 2 parts and become a multi-part message. When this happens, it's character limit also gets reduced to 153 characters per each part and rest 7 characters will be occupied by different Headers and Footers to differentiate parts of messages.

Character Count

A message can be classified as 2 types:

  • Standard message

    contains characters from the GSM Basic Character Set (see below)

  • Unicode message

    If a message contains any characters that aren’t in the GSM 03.38 basic character set, the message type will be treated as unicode.
    (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GSM_03.38).

Standard English Characters:

Characters Message
1 – 160 1
161 – 306 2
307 – 459 3
460 – 612 4
613 – 765 5
766 – 918 6
919 – 1071 7
1072 – 1224 8

Non-GSM (Unicode) characters:

Characters Message
1 – 70 1
71 – 134 2
135 – 201 3
202 – 268 4
269 – 335 5
336 – 402 6
403 – 469 7
470 – 536 8

GSM Basic Character Set

Reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GSM_03.38

SMS Count

Hopefully, this helps you understand better how Text Message Works. Feel free to send us a query on support@leadsrain.com or visit our Rich Text Message Service and Schedule your Demo Now with our team of Experts.

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