In the land of texts messages being delivered through carriers, there are some specifications we must follow to ensure delivery - and also to determine credit use. It can get slightly complicated, so we'll do our best to break it down so you can easily understand how this works - and how to draft your texts strategically!

Definitions

First, we'll go over some definitions that will help you get a firm grasp of the article. 

Characters - When typing a text, each symbol/letter/number has a specific character count. In most cases, that character count is 1. Read on to learn more about the characters that take up two characters in your text. 

Credits - At Postscript, texts sent cost a certain amount of credits. When credits are mentioned in this article, we are referring to credits PER text sent. 

GSM7 Characters - These are the most commonly used letters and symbols in many languages. All of these count as 1 character each when writing your text. Spaces are also considered a character.

  • "Take 10% off of our heels today only!" would be 37 characters. Each character in the text would count as 1 character each. 

GSM7-Extension Characters - These are characters that are required to have an "escape character" within the text. That means that all of these characters will count as 2 characters each when writing your text.
GSM7 - Extension Characters: |    ^    {    }    [    ]    ~    \   €  
Note: When dropping in a tag such a {Shop_name} or {First_Name}, the { characters are not counted as TWO characters because they will be replaced with the tag associated with them. 

  • "Take 10% off of our {best selling} heels today only!" would be 54 characters. Each { would count as 2 characters each, while the rest of the characters would count as 1 character each.

Emojis or Unicode - These are the standard emojis that can be used and any special characters not in the GSM7/GSM7-EXT charactersets. These will count as 2 characters each when writing your text. Using an emoji will also make all other characters, including the GSM7-EXT count as only 1 character.

  • "Take 10% off of our {best selling} heels today only! 😄" would be 55 characters. Each { would count as 1 character each, the emoji would count as 2 characters, and the rest of the text would count as 1 character each. 

MMS - This is a text that includes an image or a GIF. The above character counts are still applicable, but in a MMS message, you have 1600 characters to use!

How Character Count Determines Credit Usage

GSM7 + GSM7-Ext Characters only - each 160 characters that you use is 1 credit.

1 - 160 characters = 1 credit
161 - 320 characters = 2 credits
321 - 480 characters = 3 credits
And so on.

Just remember that GSM7 characters count as 1 character each & GSM7-EXT characters count as two characters each when writing the text.

Emojis + GSM7/GSM7-Ext Characters - When an emoji is used an a text without an image/gif, the character count goes down to 70 characters per 1 credit cost. 

1 - 70 characters including an emoji = 1 credit
71 - 140 characters including an emoji = 2 credits
141 - 210 characters including an emoji = 3 credits
And so on. 

Just remember that emojis that you use will count as 2 characters each & the GSM7-EXT characters will now count as 1 credit each in the text that you're writing. 


MMS Messages - A MMS message includes an image or a GIF - which allows up to 1600 characters for 3 credits. 1600 characters is the max that is able to send in one text. 

1 - 1600 characters with image = 3 credits

As mentioned above, each GSM7 will count as 1 character, each GSM7-EXT or Emoji will count as 2 characters. But you have up to 1600 characters available in a MMS text! 


Hopefully that explains how the carriers count characters - and what it means for your credit use. Please let us know in chat if you have any additional questions! 

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