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Exchange 2013 Text Message Notifications - support for additional carriers

Posted on 2014-02-18
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Last Modified: 2014-03-17
We are currently migrating our users to a new Exchange 2013 server, and one of the users has pointed out the Text Message Notification feature, allowing you to configure Exchange to send you Text Message Notifications whenever you receive an incoming email.

While exploring this feature, I've discovered that it does not appear to require any 3rd party support, it 'just works', however, we are in Canada, and it only seems to support the Bell and Telus carriers.  In order for this feature to be useful to us, it would have to at least support Rogers as well.

There is a link that advises "If you don't see your mobile service provider listed here, we have not yet established a relationship with your mobile service provider":

http://office.microsoft.com/client/15/help/home?Shownav=true&lcid=4105&ns=OLWAENDUSER&ver=15&v=15.0.712.0&mode=Desktop&helpid=ms.exch.owao.ConfigureRegionAndMobileOperator

Poking around for more information on this, it seems to me that this type of feature used to require either an active sync connected device to send out the SMS messages, or a third party OMS service (which I believe has been discontinued).

I'm wondering if anyone can advise if it is possible for us to add support for additional carriers ourselves, or if we are stuck waiting for Microsoft to 'form a relationship' with other carriers?

Any information would be appreciated, thanks!
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Question by:Tatankasa
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Adam Brown earned 500 total points
ID: 39868878
You'd need to get a third party SMS gateway solution to get something working if your provider isn't supported. The lack of support may spur a relationship between MS and Rogers, but if there isn't existing support now you have to use third party SMS or get an account with Bell/Telus (I don't know anything about Canadian cell networks, so if that's not possible you're kinda out of luck). You wouldn't have to switch your whole systems to them, just get a single SMS device with them.
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by:Tatankasa
ID: 39868906
Thanks for the info.

So you mean that one SMS device with Bell or Telus would be able to be used for outgoing SMS for all our Exchange users?  If so, can you provide a reference to any help/setup documentation on how to work with that scenario?
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by:Adam Brown
Adam Brown earned 500 total points
ID: 39868937
Oh, wait, sorry. I was mistaken. After digging a bit, the recipient has to be on Bell or Telus in your region for it to work, no the sender. Basically what happens is that each user sets up their own notification method, which causes the Exchange server to send an Email to the Mobile Provider's SMS gateway every time they receive new mail.  It's not something you set up administratively, but something each user sets up for themselves.

That said, you can get 3rd party SMS gateway solutions that will do the same thing, but they can get kind of spendy. They will work with any provider, though, as long as you have an SMS device to hook up to the system.
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Author Comment

by:Tatankasa
ID: 39870140
Ok, I appreciate the information, can you refer me to any documentation about configuring Exchange 2013 to use a 3rd party SMS gateway?  I'm concerned because I haven't been able to find any myself, and am starting to think Exchange 2013 might not support 3rd party SMS gateways...
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Author Closing Comment

by:Tatankasa
ID: 39934149
From my own research, I've discovered that it seems the most common 3rd party SMS gateway solutions work by regular email.  They generally go <phone number>@<smsproviderDNSname> and then a secrect code in the subject line to prevent others from using it.  There are others that require a send connector be setup in exchange, but are basically the same email system.  In this case users would have to create forwarding message rules as apposed to the txt message notification feature.
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