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Frequently Asked Questions

General Information

 What do people use this service for?
  • The range of ways people use it is quite varied. Some people use it in ways we never intended and have managed to integrate it into their system very nicely.
 Who do I contact for more information or help?

If your question is not answered in the eTXT User Guide then contact the appropriate person (see below).
If you setup the account yourself (e.g. if you are the Company Administrator or an Individual Account holder) then call eTXT Support at 0800 438 3898 please have the following information on hand:

  • Account name used in eTXT
  • Contact Phone Number
  • Specific details. Clearly state your intention or issue and provide all relevant details. It is better to provide more information than too little and in the process of gathering the information your solution may actually appear without further assistance being required. State what you are trying to do and what you have tried.
    If you are a Company User then you should contact your Company Administrator in the first instance. If they are not able to assist you then they will contact Spark.
 I've forgotten my password or my password doesn't seem to work?

If you have lost or forgotten your password, there is a password reset option which will allow you to setup a new password.

This can be found on the Forgotten Password page and will send you out an email with instructions to reset your password. The email will be sent to the email address registered against your eTXT account.

All passwords are case sensitive e.g. a password of "Cu543cdg" must be entered as "Cu543cdg" and not "cu543cdg"

Account Options and Billing

 

 Where do I set my Signature?
  • In the Profile menu under "Signature" and you can type in a signature that can be added to messages before you send them or automatically attached to all new messages sent via the web site (not email). Remember it is best with limited character numbers to keep your signature short.

Sending Messages

 How many messages can be sent per minute?
  • The speed of message delivery will be determined by:
  1. Network connection speed between your PC and eTXT
  2. Method of connecting to eTXT (email or via the web page)
  3. The destination carrier. Some carriers throttle message delivery based on their network requirements.
 Can I see when a recipient received a message on their handset?
  • Yes. Although a few networks do not provide the message status information most do and they will be shown with the message in the eTXT Message Log.
 Can I see when a recipient reads a SMS message I sent them?
  • No. Standard SMS does not provide this sort of information.
 Can I send in different languages?
  • Yes. Some languages may not display correctly on some handsets and carrier networks.

If you are using a UTF-16 language (Chinese, Cyrillic etc), your character payload per SMS message part decreases to 70 characters in the first part, and 134 characters in the second part and 201 in the third part.
This means if you send a message that is 100 characters (for example) in a UTF-16 language, you will be charged for 2 messages.

 Are messages delivered immediately?
  • Spark attempts to send all messages to the carriers within seconds of receiving them, but SMS is a best effort, store and forward process which means that the carriers may have their own queuing, delivery and expiry policies.

Once eTXT has passed the message to the carriers delivery is beyond our control, however, we will request status updates and use these to keep you informed of the of the message if these are available.

You can use the status information to decide whether you should resend the message or use an alternative communication method.

 Can Email2SMS work from OWA if the customer use webmail?

Yes it can. One proviso, however – the envelope sender sometimes is deceiving or different from what the customer expect and Spark would be able to assist with the test process.

 When sending SMS by email can I tell if the person received it?
  • Yes. When sending an email set the option for a "read receipt" (each email system has a different way of doing this so see the relevant vendor for more information). When a message is processed with a read receipt request, eTXT waits for a few minutes and sends an email back that has the status information for each recipient.

If you have login credentials you can also view this information in the online message logs.

 Can I see when a recipient reads a SMS message I sent them?
  • No. Standard SMS does not provide this sort of information. The closest you can get is if the carrier notifies us when the message is received on the handset.
 How is sending text messages from eTXT different from usual text messaging?
  • You have the convenience of messaging from a web site and being able to send a group message from your phone in a very cost-effective manner.
 How do I send a message to a mobile?
  • When you log in to eTXT you'll be presented with the main screen for sending messages. Here you simply type your message into the text box, select the contacts or Recipients you'd like to send the message to and click 'SEND'.
 How do I send an SMS by email?
  • Sending SMS by email requires your email address to be setup in eTXT. Contact your company administrator to do this and they will either:
  1. Add your email address to the appropriate account through the company administration section in eTXT

For example sending to mobile number 614912345678 you would address the email to 614912345678@etxt.co.nz. It is that simple.
Try sending a message to your personal phone and you should receive it within a few minutes. If you do not receive and do not receive an error back by email please contact your company administrator to confirm your address is set up.

 Can we set up eTXT so each login can only see certain numbers/groups?
  • The company admin user can close the address books so users can not send to any contacts that are not in the address book that the company admin sets up.
 How do I create a message that will be sent at a later time?
  • Create the message as normal, by adding the recipients and entering the message text. Instead of clicking Send, click Schedule.

This takes you into the Schedule Message screen where you can select from a calendar what day to send the message and then use the pull down menus to select the time you want the message sent.
Then you click Save and you will be taken to the Confirm Schedule screen where you check the message content and confirm the time you'd like the message sent. If you are happy with the message content and the timing of the message delivery click 'OK' and you'll be taken back to the Send Message screen.

 How can eTXT be automated to send the same message to different recipients on a regularly basis?

ExampleI'm looking to send monthly messages to our customers once their account reaches a prescribed limit. What sort of information would we need to provide in order to organise this? Would you simply require a file with the account numbers / mobile contact number, etc ?
eTXT can be used to send out the same message to thousands of recipients at once. This can be done in a variety of ways to a varying level of automation depending on your needs, environment and technical level.

eTXT must not be used for unsolicited SPAM or marketing messages. Users that do so may have the service restricted or cut off.

If you are using an email method to send messages using eTXT ensure, that the address you are sending from is configured in the eTXT system before you send the messages:

  1. Manually import contact file into eTXT as an address list
    When you import an address list the contacts are available to be used in the eTXT web site or via email.
  2. Automated address book updates
  3. Another option is to automate an address book update so one of your eTXT address books always contains a current list of these numbers assigned to one group.
    See the user guide for information on automating address book updates.
    This option would require a plain text file with name, number and group(s) (eg "MonthlyWarning"), one contact per line in the file.
    If this is automated the most current group of contacts would be in that address book and you could send a message to MonthlyWarning@etxt.co.nz which would SMS all the current members of that group.
  4. Scripting and batch files
    Since eTXT can use email to send SMS messages, a simple windows batch file, linux shell script or even an MS Office macro could be quickly written to process your file of recipients and send the same message, or even a customised message, to each person. How this is done depends the language you use, the complexity of the message and your network environment.
    Some (free) command line tools* that you may find useful for sending automated email are:

* these links are provided for information only and without guarantee or any explicit or implied association. If you need assistance with any of these tools please contact the relevant vendor.

Receiving Messages

 Where do replies go?
  • All replies to messages sent from the eTXT will show in RECEIVED MESSAGES log on the web site. Click the MESSAGES tab to see these messages.

Original Sent By...

Reply Sent to...

Web Site

Web Site

MS Outlook or other email software using registered Email Address

back to your email inbox and logged in web site

Registered Handset

back to the handset (not logged in the website)

API

API Message Feed of Message Log

Address Books

 How do I store contact numbers?
  • Select Address Book from the Main Menu (In the contacts menu) and then click 'Create Contact' on the Contacts menu. You then type in their contact details, and the new contact is added to your Address Book.
 How do I create groups?
  • Select Create Group from the Address Book Groups menu. All members in your Address Book are displayed on the page. You then assign a Name to the group. Members can then be added to the group simply by selecting them and clicking the 'ADD' button.
 Why can't I add a new group?
  • In some instances your Group Administrator may deny access to add contacts to the Address Books. Contact your Company Administrator if this is the case.
 How do I import an address book?
  • Click on the Address Books menu option (In the contacts menu) and see the Address Book Importer section. This option works best if you have existing contact lists stored in the form of a CSV (Comma Separated Values) file such as a Microsoft spreadsheet. Set your spreadsheet up with header rows of Number, Name, Alias, Group, Group Alias, and further rows containing the contacts you wish to import and eTXT will attempt to import the data. See Address Books for more information.
 Why am I getting warnings and/or errors when I try to import into an address book?

It is important that the records you want to import conform to eTXT requirements. These are some common causes for imports not completing correctly:

  • eTXT can not import contacts or groups that already exist in your address books. If they already existing your address book, try copying them in the Manage Address Book screen.
  • Contact or Group names can not contain spaces or many other special characters. Remove the spaces from names or replace them with the underscore "_" character.
  • Aliases can not be longer than ten characters.

Contact Spark support if you have problems with the data you are trying to import.


Message history and reports

 How do I view messages that I have sent and received?
  • Click on the Inbox menu option to display a log of messages. You can also choose to filter by Sent or Received messages with details on their current status. eTXT functionality allows you to Forward (F), Reply (R) or delete any messages from the message log or message detail pages.
 How do I change the Recent Messages display?

  • Click on Display Settings under your Profile menu and you can select the number of Recent Messages to display by setting values from 2 - 20 messages. Click SAVE to keep your changes.
 Can I change the Sent/Received messages display?
  • Simply select in the same way as the Recent Messages display and click SAVE.

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