Twilio

Twilio Updates

Twilio mention · May 28, 2018

The Best Way to Record Calls and Transcribe Them Quickly

Something funny happened as our phones turned into pocket computers: The phone part quit being as important. Our phones aren’t glued to our ears anymore. For many of us, phone calls are something we plan—they’re important conversations about detailed subjects, not random calls to check something quick...read more
Twilio mention · November 8, 2017

How youthSpark Created an Automated System Without Developers

A leading innovator in the battle against human trafficking, Georgia's youthSpark transforms the lives of youths at risk for exploitation and abuse. They have become a thought leader in reducing child exploitation and sex trafficking rates in Georgia and across the country, too. Part of youthSpark's mission to...read more
Twilio update · April 17, 2017

Twilio Update: Send Longer SMS Messages

Short and sweet doesn't always cut it when sending an SMS. With the newest update to Twilio's Zapier integration, you can send messages up to 1600 characters long—that's the space of more than 11 tweets to deliver a perfectly crafted message to your customers. What's...read more
Twilio update · August 29, 2016

New to Twilio: Brand Your SMS Messages with Alphanumeric Sender IDs

When customers recognize the senders of messages and calls, they're more likely to engage. Now you can use Zapier to send Twilio messages that show your brand or business name as the sender, instead of a generic-looking phone number. Just sit back and watch engagement increase. What's New...read more
Twilio mention · November 17, 2015

Build a Prototype Without Code: Rely on Apps, Integrations and APIs

Creating something new takes time. A lot of time. The idea might come in a flash, but turning it into a product with customers and revenue takes far, far longer. Unless you have the right process in place. When Richard Eastes came up with the idea for his lawnmowing-on-demand service...read more
Twilio mention · August 29, 2014

Welcoming Full-Stack Engineer Rob Golding to Zapier

A note from Wade Foster, Zapier CEO: When Rob Golding reached out to Zapier nearly a year ago, we knew immediately we'd like to work with him someday. At that time, he understood the Zapier tech stack top to bottom—it was clear he was an excellent programmer. Then...read more
Twilio mention · August 12, 2014

How to Amend Your App's Terms of Service for Federal Agencies

Unless you’ve gone out of your way, odds are, Federal agencies and their employees can’t even consider using your startup's service. Even if it’s free. Even if it would save some group of Federal workers loads of time. The reason is legal: your terms of service...read more
Twilio update · October 20, 2013

Twilio Split Messages

Twilio actions just got a lot more useful on Zapier. Before, if you sent Twilio a long SMS message (more than 160 characters) it would be truncated. Now, Zapier will split the message into several SMS and send them sequentially. This is turned off by default, but you can enable...read more
Matthew Guay
Reviewed by Matthew Guay
Last updated June 13, 2018

You can get a new email address in minutes. A new domain name can be yours in a few hours, max. But getting a phone number typically means a trip to your local phone store—and getting a toll-free phone number in another city or country might take a plane trip at best, or be impossible at worst.

Phone communications may be ubiquitous, but they're also mired in bureaucracy and tied to legacy standards. That's what makes Twilio so refreshing—it simplifies phone numbers down to the basics, so you can add phone tools to your apps or get a new international phone number as easily as getting a new domain name.

Twilio is a telephone service designed for developers to build their own phone-powered apps on top of. Just like a transactional email service can send email messages for you though an API, Twilio lets you place and receive calls, SMS and MMS messages, and more with just a few lines of code. It can then help you connect all of your messaging, with support for other messaging services including LINE, Viber, Facebook Messenger, and more to work alongside SMS.

Getting started is impossibly simple. Just signup, and Twilio will immediately give you a new phone number. You can make or receive a call or SMS immediately through Twilio's web app to test your number, or pick another number in any of the dozens of countries Twilio supports.

Then, it's time to setup your new phone numbers. The simplest way is with Twimlets, tiny bits of code Twilio offers to let you forward calls from your Twilio number to any "real" phone worldwide (complete with Caller ID info), add a voicemail, setup a conference call, play hold music, or even add a voice menu to your phone number. If you only need to receive calls from your number, Twimlets may be all you'll ever need.

Placing calls is a tad more difficult—you'll need a 3rd party app for Twilio calls, or can use Twilio's API to build your own phone functionality into your apps. That way, you can add extra features, including call recoding, re-routing, transcription, conferencing and more. The Twilio Client includes the building blocks you need to add phone tools to your web or mobile apps easily, so you can focus on building the tools you need and let Twilio handle the call features.

It's not just traditional phone calls, either. Twilio support video and SIP calls along with push messaging, so you can setup calls between your apps without having to use real phone numbers. It also includes full-featured SMS and MMS support, so you can send messages right from your app, terminal, or through hundreds of other apps via Zapier. Then, you can receive and view messages online, along with the rest of your Twilio account stats. You can also build automated workflows to answer and record calls based on voice-activated menus, send marketing messages automatically, and more.

Phone integration doesn't have to be difficult. Whether you need to build a customized call center, want to make the next great chat app, or just need an international phone number for your support team, Twilio makes it simple to set all of that up and more—and you'll only pay for just the features you need.

Originally published December 9, 2015; updated June 13, 2018 with new pricing and features

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An easy tool for developers to send and receive SMS and voice calls.