What is P2P and A2P messaging?

What is P2P and A2P messaging?
Bulk Solutions SMS/MMS Text Messaging generally falls within one of two categories: A2P and P2P messaging. Read on to find out the differences, and which is right for you.

A2P Messaging
A2P, or application-to-person messaging, is any kind of traffic in which a person is receiving messages from an application. A2P messaging includes (but is not limited to) marketing messages, appointment reminders, chat bots or virtual assistants, notifications, and one-time passwords (OTPs) or PIN codes.

Carriers in the United States and Canada have a strict interpretation of A2P, and consider all messaging that passes through Bulk Solutions (or other messaging application platforms) to be A2P.

P2P Messaging
P2P, or person-to-person messaging, is generally defined as a two-way (back and forth) messaging conversation between two humans. This could be messages between friends on mobile phones, or messages connecting two people using Bulk Solutions's REST API as a conduit.

In the United States and Canada, P2P messaging is defined very narrowly by telecom regulations, and does not include any application-mediated messaging. All Bulk Solutions messaging is considered A2P in the US and Canada.

What numbers or senders should I use for my type of messaging?
United States and Canada carriers consider all traffic passing through Bulk Solutions to be A2P. You have several options for how to send this traffic; for an overview, please login to our portal under Messaging -> Messaging Instructions for more information.