Send long text messages

When the standard 160-character SMS message is not enough, you can send longer messages of up to 918 characters.
mobile app
Multiple texts displayed as one
Long text messages are created by linking multiple texts together.
Include more content in texts
You can send more information to customers, staff and partners.
Real-time character counter
Avoid spending more credit than planned with the character counter.

Send long texts using your computer keyboard

Send SMS alerts and notifications to customers or staff with messages up to four times longer, making communication clearer.
Send long texts quickly
Spend less time writing long text messages by typing them on your computer with a full keyboard.
Include more details in text promotions
Sell more products and services by including more detailed information about your offers.
Stop limiting your communication
Don´t limit yourself to 160 characters when your SMS alerts and notifications need to be longer.
Avoid text-speak and spell correctly
Communicate clearly and accurately with longer text messages and avoid text-speak.

The benefits of sending long text messages

Textmagic enables you to send longer text messages, up to 918 characters, without it being truncated (except in North America). Here are the main benefits of sending long text messages:
Use Unicode characters
Unicode characters take up multiple GSM characters. When a Unicode symbol appears in a text, it is usually segmented at the 70-character mark, thus making it even harder for the recipient to decipher the message.
Send more information
The ability to send long SMS messages means that you will never have to cram all the information into 160 characters again.
Improve SMS navigation
When they are segmented, many long text messages are displayed in a random order. This can be extremely frustrating for the reader. To help solve this problem, Textmagic displays long text messages as a single text.

Learn how businesses like yours use Textmagic

Here is how the Textmagic business texting platform is helping businesses daily to grow their revenue and improve their productivity.

Frequently asked questions

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How to configure and monitor the maximum length of long text messages?

Textmagic allows you to configure the maximum length of your messages from the dashboard. This will help you better budget your SMS marketing campaign.

    • Email to SMS settings. Access Services -> Email to SMS -> Send & Receive Settings from the Textmagic dashboard and set your desired length for text messages.
    • Distribution list SMS settings. When you create a new distribution list, you can set the maximum length of your long text messages for each list. This will give you more control over your SMS marketing campaign. You can edit these settings every time you create a new distribution list.
    • Send SMS messages online. When you compose messages in the web app, under the message box, you can see a widget that shows the message length and cost. You may remove/add text so it will fit your budget.
Why are most text messages limited to 160 characters?

In GSM environments, text messages can contain a maximum of 140 bytes (standard 8-bit bytes) of message data. The original GSM charset was designed to include letters from the English alphabet, a few symbols and several international characters. A text message that contains characters only from the GSM 7-bit charset will be compressed into 140 8-bit bytes to produce the 160-character limit that we are familiar with.

Why do some symbols count as multiple characters?

Some symbols from the GSM charset are represented by two or more characters, but they can be used without special encoding. Texting becomes problematic when you try to use symbols that are not part of the GSM 7-bit charset (e.g., Chinese, Cyrillic, Thai letters, etc.) and require encoding in the Unicode UCS-2 character set (16 bits). Because Unicode characters are encoded with 16 bits, the SMS message will be limited to 70 characters (70 * 16 = 140 * 8).

This is when concatenation and segmentation occurs.
Most text messages are segmented when they exceed the 153-character mark because of the need for user-data headers (UDHs).

How many characters can I include in my Textmagic messages?

The longer the text message is (the more SMS parts there are), the more it costs.

Standard Character Set
The maximum message length is 918 characters, including spaces. A single text message, in the GSM 03.38 charset, is concatenated at 153 characters: 306 (2 x 153) for two-part texts, 459 (3 x 153) for three-part texts, 612 (4 x 153) four-part texts, 765 (5 x 153) five-part texts and 918 (6 x 153) for six-part texts.
If the text contains Unicode characters, it will be segmented at 134 (2 x 67), 201 (3 x 67), 268 (4 x 67), 335 (5 x 67) and 402 (6 x 67) characters, respectively.

Unicode Character Set
The maximum message length is 406 characters, including spaces. The maximum lengths of two-part, three-part, four-part, five-part and six-part concatenated Unicode text messages are 134 (2 x 67), 201 (3 x 67), 268 (4 x 67), 335 (5 x 67) and 402 (6 x 67) characters, respectively.

Use our free text transliteration tool to transliterate text message characters from non-Latin to Latin only.

How can I check the cost and character count of my text messages?

The character count of your Textmagic messages is automatically displayed under your message box. Our software will automatically calculate the number of characters required for special symbols and display a cost estimate to help you budget your SMS marketing campaigns.

You can also use our free SMS length calculator.

Can long SMS messages be used for mass texting?

Yes, but you will have to calculate the total cost of every text message and multiply it by the number of texts you send.