FrontlineSMS

FrontlineSMS let users send, receive and manage SMS over a mobile network.

Best Phone-Modem-Prepiad SIM Card Combination for USA Usage

After much pain with FrontlineSMS and several phone/modem/SIM combinations, I'm wondering what the best setup is for users in the USA.

I'd like to run FLSMS on a Windows XP computer using a pre-paid SIM card. I'd prefer T-Mobile as I already have a line and credit to use, but I'm not tied to them. What is a requirement is a USB modem or phone w/ USB cable that a) really works on US cellular carriers and b) is available for normal purchase for less than $150.

Thanks in advance,
Wayan

Tags: Modem, Phone, SIM, T-Mobile, USA

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YEAH - seems like replacing one AT&T pay as you go sim card with an identical looking one from a different box made everything start working. I wasn't around at that point - but the moral of the story is that US mobile companies are more like witchcraft, whereas African ones sell reliable interchangable equipment.

If I had to do it over, I would try everything I could to be able to test a combination of SIM card and modem on FLSMS before you buy. I don't know why there isn't a vendor on the continent that can handle this kind of problem yet.

Plan Z: Today I talked to a group in pakistan that runs an SMS-to-web gateway. Because they are in Pakistan, they can allow me to receive SMSs from anywhere in the world for free, since Pakistani TelComs don't charge to receive. That seems like a bonus worth looking at a foriegn based gateway.
At&T "Locks" Sims to cetain phone models. No not the PUK lock or the sim pin code but a more advanced sim lock to use the sim in one phone.

Read my post below for more information.

Good Luck!
I am a new user to Frontline and am almost successful so far. This is a short description of efforts so far.

Thus far I am able to SEND messages from frontline. However I am not able to READ incoming texts from modem.

This is with new equipment, so hopefully this will help.

Modem: Prepaid LG "turbo" connect. Purchased at Wal-Mart 9-3-10 $100 USD
Did NOT activate prepaid modem sim as AT&T modem plans do NOT have messaging attached.

Purchased GoPhone. $30 paid for minimal service and 200 texts for $4.99

This is where it gets complicated.

Insert activated GO phone sim into previous purchased prepaid modem.
modem will now SEND texts.

Unfortunately since phone has a "Bonus" of $15 SIM is Locked. Must contact At&T customer service to explain I need to use Sim in different phones. After some discussion convinced At&T to remove "Bonus" and unlock sim from phone.

Now Sim will Send from Modem and will read/send from phone.

If anyone has any suggestions as to what needs to be done to READ messages from modem, I would certainly appreciate any help.

Hope this helps anyone setting up the system.
Hi Ed

Problems receiving are usually caused by some other running software grabbing the messages before FrontlineSMS gets to them. Do you have any software running which came with the modem - some kind of Modem Management Software? If so, its likely causing the problem. Make sure anything which might be reading the device is completely shut down and then start FrontlineSMS.

The US is a horribly complicated place when it comes to this, but luckily is not a target country for us. Fingers crossed you get this working!

Ken
Thanks for the reply. I am going to try removing all SMS/Modem software and reinstalling FL fresh.

I only have one suggestion. discuss that the word "true" needs to be in the CSV file rather than "Active" or Dormant. This one piece of info would have saved me a couple hours of trying to work out the import feature.

Thank You for the great software.
Ed,

we'll try to document this a bit better ;)
If you can document this telecom witchcraft, FLSMS could make a bigger splash in the field. Consider stealing a GlobalGiving idea and running a "documentation contest" with financial prize and reputation incentives for the writers. The winner would be the one who presented the best written and most complete list of esoteric use cases and situational workarounds. Annd you should publish all submitted use cases...
Flsms is fully operational now!

I returned the LG "turbo" modem and purchased a current "velocity" (Option 462) modem. This modem works with a "Go Phone" Sim card to give unlimited send AND receive.

The program is still a bit buggy, but working rather well overall.

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