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Plivo provides XML and HTTP APIs that serve as building blocks for companies to integrate telephony and text messaging...
Austin, TX
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beware scammers!

- their status page is an absolute lie! they never ever report issues we face (and quite often it's a major issue e.g. not receiving calls from the biggest UK provider)

- they over charge and refuse to issue refunds for services they don't provider because their system is not working properly. Just recently we analysed our sms traffic and there was over 2.5% messages with an unknown status (which apparently means it just got lost somewhere) yet it's absolutely acceptable for them to still charge for those.

- they don't take any responsibility EVER! any issue you face you have to provide loads of examples (even though they have all the details already and could just check their logs). Then they just blame companies they work with - mostly carriers.

- they don't have any monitoring in place. Every time there is an issue it's usually you reporting it first, then it takes couple hours for them to even read about it at which point it's usually ok again and they just close the ticket saying it was just a temporary issue. but what if there is an issue like this every week / month? Nothing! it's fine from their perspective and they will never do anything about it.

Would Recommend: No
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I am no programmer and no tech-ee like many of you all, you are quite fortunate. PLIVO IS STRONGLY NOT RECOMMENDED! Plivo (or choice of Twilio) is required by a 3rd party platform, for the SMS and phone number purchasing features. I am so sorry I did not go with Twilio as a friend advised. I need to have the most basic integrations up and running, I was confused when it came to "Triggering the PHLO from your SMS app" and/or "install the server SDKs". After in-depth 8+ hours looking but not finding any useful: 'how-to-s', you-tubes, nor Plivo website additional explanation, nothing of value, as a last resort I email support, with a log of the issue, not wanting to use there time if I could solve it myself.

"Kindly ensure that you are using the latest SDKs of composer and PHP-SDK provided by Plivo here... it is not on our end..."

FIRSTLY, downloads clearly state, each is the latest version available, so telling me to go check the versions THAT YOU ALL ARE PROVIDING IS GARBAGE ADVICE AND CLEARLY "THE RUN AROUND"!

WOW, LET ME UNDERSTAND THIS: I signed up for Plivo, Pay $, and Plivo provides a list of instructions to use SMS-platform. I followed step by step on the Plivo website, download the programs Plivo says, follow each step, get suck at step 4, and Plivo claims my issue, not theirs, who cares, has nothing to do with them, cavalierly. Twilight Zone!

I would bet if this support person, who wanted to 'hit solved' apparently as swift as possible, early Monday morning, would have taken 5 mins to think, what issue stoping me & this SDK, could have supplied a quick fix. That I am convinced of it, and there should be more "how-to/ you-tube visuals" available anyway about this and related. Instead, now I have lost Sunday and Monday productivity, with no further reply to my follow-ups from Plivo Support!?! Unreal! I avoid UNPROFESSIONAL COMPANIES like PLIVO! What is PLIVO's "support staff" (loosely) for?? What does Plivo expect me to do now, higher a tech to install their software??? No sir! I will yell it from up-high (haha) & I will demand a refund, and go to Twilio, WHICH IS MY ADVICE TO ANYONE ELSE READING THIS. PLIVO IS PROBLEMATIC w/ TERRIBLE CUSTOMER SERVICE! -AJ

Pros: Great supposed features.
Cons: problematic and BAD support.
Would Recommend: No
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Hoshiyar S.'s review for Plivo

Reliable API for sms and voice call. This is suitable for small and large scale organisations. Crucial API to increase the efficiency. Go for it.

With the help of this API we have automated the SMS and Calling functionalities in our applications. Automated surveys by sms earlier we use to do manually and it was very tedious task. Increased the efficiency and productivity.

-Via G2Crowd with permission from Plivo

Pros: Its an easy to use and robust API. Integration of Plivo API is so smooth in web and mobile applications. We can send links in the SMS text. It's a reliable API for sms and calling functionality - pretty much faster and highly responsive. Easy to configure as per customized features. Great API for multifactor authentication. Bulk SMS sending feature is awesome.
Cons: So far Plivo heading right direction. Plivo provides service at reasonable cost but in a few countries they charging a bit more but still worth of use. Overall its awesome.
Would Recommend: Yes
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Try this out, its getting better each day.

Plivo's APIs is just awesome, but what I really like about their approach is that the telephony stack is open source. So while you can start out quickly on their cloud hosted platform, if you hit scale you can deploy their stack with a network provider and get wholesale prices. Their cloud hosted offering very cheap too. I haven't used their voice capabilities, but the SMS sending service ticked all the boxes with reliable delivery, trackable delivery status, full hosted log of every API activity, etc.

-Via G2Crowd with permission from Plivo

Pros: The cheaper pricing, detailed logging and the fact a lot of big-name companies use them like WhatsApp.
Cons: The console is okay but in terms of functionality and UI design it's a little bit lacking compared to other consoles I've used before. Sometimes the quality of calls can be a bit low but not enough to make us go elsewhere.
Would Recommend: Yes
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Utkarsh S.'s review for Plivo

Plivo provides us with a hassle free SMS messaging service. It really helped our solution to open SMS communications for our clients.

-Via G2Crowd with permission from Plivo

Pros: The support team is really fascinating, they ace when it comes to handling customer requirements.
Cons: The pricing can be a bit more competitive, but that's me nitpicking.
Would Recommend: Yes
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Pros: it's have many solutions for different kind of apps/website who need the services.

Cons: don't have auto authentication when user getting sms verification to verify phone number.

user must enter the code by himself.

Overall we had some problems with server (integrating plivo on our server) any plivo customer service helps us vie email support.

-Via Capterra with permission from Plivo

Would Recommend: Yes
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You get a solid platform at this price point and their API does make it relatively easy to implement. You also get the nice benefits of a large number inventory to work with; however, definitely double check any numbers you port and implement your own logging / debugging solution.

We provide a Call Tracking solution - the key benefits with Plivo were lower pricing, free support and a higher area code number availability

-Via G2Crowd with permission from Plivo

Pros: They have a large inventory of numbers and are fairly good at acquiring new numbers in harder area codes and internationally. API is easy to work with (see debugging below) Support is generally good; especially for the price (free). Has gotten a lot better in the last few months. The new interface is much nicer than the old.
Cons: We've had spam issues as their quality control isn't as good as Twilio. We've had porting issues - including numbers ported away without our permission or numbers that should have been ported which end up as dead lines - this has gotten signfiicantly better; however it has still happened recently. Debugging problems / API issues is a nightmare on a very large implementation. Digging through logs is practically impossible; finding a particular call and its debug logs is really hard. We have so many calls that it's impossible to find a particular one. Twilio does an amazing job of this and they would do very well to emulate it.
Would Recommend: Yes
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Rory B.'s review for Plivo

The API is the same as Twilio's, so switching was simple.

Plivo is cheap! We buy numbers, and send many text messages from each number daily.

The savings made unit economics make a lot more sense for our business over Twilio.

-Via G2Crowd with permission from Plivo

Pros: For large projects, the unit economics simply make sense. We chose Plivo over Twilio for economics entirely. The API is very similar to Twilio, so switching was easy.
Cons: Thew dashboard feels incomplete. It is very simply, but error logs and integrations feel lacking.
Would Recommend: Yes
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Karthik S.'s review for Plivo

Easy to use. Nice support. Nice price

Developed Voice biometric attendance system. Avoided buying expensive biometric devices. it also helped to us to deploy in places where previously we cant able to deploy any real time biometric solution due to unavailability of Internet and other factor. plivo really really helped us to patch the gap between the tradition and modern technology

-Via G2Crowd with permission from Plivo

Pros: Plivo helped used to develop Voice biometric attendance system . its was smooth integration and able to deploy in few days. it also helped us to use it from any palace without any Internet connection. we can able to solve lot of problem in Human resources department over the nice.
Cons: Nothing. I like it very much. I can able to develop the app in few hours with out any issue at all we where up and running in live server in couple of days.
Would Recommend: Yes
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Smart inbound call distribution and outbound sms alerting. We implemented these features quickly and easily without losing flexibility.

-Via G2Crowd with permission from Plivo

Pros: It has support for lots of countries not found on other solutions. You can get started in almost no time, and lets us focus on our product.
Cons: - Numbers in some countries like Argentina are a little expensive. - The need to encode special characters like é using numerical entities. I think encoding should be handled by the sdk transparently. - Sometimes, documentation can be a little thin.
Would Recommend: Yes
Provider Overview

Plivo provides XML and HTTP APIs that serve as building blocks for companies to integrate telephony and text messaging capabilities in their applications without requiring a thorough understanding of telecommunication infrastructure. The company says its mission is to simplify global telecom and enable access to quality cloud communications at a low cost.

The company was founded in 2011 when co-founders Mike Ricordeau and Venky Balasubramanian met on Github looking for a communications platform that could add voice and SMS capabilities to their web applications. After not finding one suitable for their needs, they decided to build their own. This project became Plivo Open Source, which soon received enough of a following to continue development into the complete cloud platform that the service has become today.

Plivo has received funding from investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Qualcomm Ventures, Battery Ventures and Y Combinator. It has three office locations including headquarters in San Francisco, a second office in Bengaluru, India and a third in Dublin, Ireland.

Plivo is privately held, has been profitable 2014, has more than 180 employees and counts more than 70,000 customers among its clientele, including recognizable names such as Zynga, Experian, GoDaddy, Greyhound, Atlassian, IBM, LogMeIn among many others.

Plivo's Help & Support Options:

  • A detailed knowledge base covering information about phone numbers, SMS short codes, number porting, billing, SDKs & APIs, SIP trunking, Phlo, general frequently asked questions and more.
  • A guide section with getting started and how-to articles about all products and services.
  • A comprehensive page of API references to help developers implement Plivo features.
  • The ability to submit a ticket for issues with or questions about any services.
  • service status page to inform customers about outages.

Plivo Products & Services:

Plivo’s services are centered on providing SMS and voice APIs which allow customers to integrate texting and calling capabilities in their site and/or software. Along with SMS and voice APIs, Plivo offers a drag and drop platform for creating custom call flows, as well as a new SIP trunking service named Zentrunk that allows subscribers to make calls globally with their VoIP infrastructure.

SMS API Integration Features:

Plivo’s SMS API can be integrated in your site or software and touts capabilities including the ability to send and receive SMS surveys, the ability to configure alerts, notifications & reminders, an SMS auto-responder that can automatically respond to customers while you are away, and two-factor authentication. Other features include:

  • Message Queueing
  • Number Pooling
  • Long Message Concatenation
  • Handle opt out Intent
  • Area-code Geomatch
  • Default Message Body Purging
  • Support for any Character Set
  • Message Feedback API
  • Sticky Sender

SMS API Integration Pricing:

Pricing options include preset rates that are applied depending on your usage (pay as you go), and the company offers volume discounts through its sales department. Rates depend on the country and the follow prices reflect SMS text message charges in the United States:

  • Regular Phone Numbers: $0.0050/SMS to send, $0.0000/SMS to receive
  • Toll Free Numbers: $0.0058/SMS to send, $0.0058/SMS to receive
  • Short Codes: $0.0045/SMS to send, $0.0045/SMS to receive
  • Carrier Passthrough Fee for Short Codes:
    • T-Mobile – $0.0025/SMS inbound, $0.0025/SMS outbound
    • Sprint – $0.0050/SMS inbound, $0.0050/SMS outbound
    • Cricket – $0.0025/SMS inbound, $0.0025/SMS outbound
    • MetroPCS – $0.00/SMS inbound, $0.0075/SMS outbound
    • AT&T – $0.00/SMS inbound, $0.0025/SMS outbound
    • Verizon – $0.00/SMS inbound, $0.0025/SMS outbound

Voice API Integration Features:

Plivo’s voice calling API provides technology for integrating VoIP services in a website or software, enabling you to call phones, SIP devices, apps or a browser. The API supports capabilities such asholding conference calls, taking voice surveys, receiving voicemail, forwarding calls and building powerful voice call workflows. Full features include:

  • Play Audio Prompts – Play pre-recorded audio files at any time during a call. Create prompts, announcements or music on hold.

  • Text to Speech – Speak dynamic text in 28 accents across various languages. Choose from female and male voices.

  • Dual Channel Call Recording – Record, store and retrieve your calls as you like. Recordings are dual channel by default and stored encrypted.

  • Custom Caller ID – Improve connect rates with your outbound calls. Set custom as your caller ID number that you’d like to show up on the end users phone.

  • Get Digit Input – Collect digits from users keypad during a call. Control your call flow based on such input.

  • Global Conference Calling – Integrate multi-party calls, audio conferencing into your apps or build advanced contact center functionality.

  • IVR Menus – Create multi-level IVRs with flexibility of audio & text for prompts. Direct callers to the right agent, team or department.

  • Call Transfer – Build advanced contact center experiences with functions like assisted/warm transfer or simply cold transfer.

  • Parallel and Sequential Dialing – Forward calls to multiple phones at once or in sequential order. Build flexible call hunting sequences.

  • Call Whisper – Announce custom whisper messages before an incoming call is answered by a sales or support agent to set context.

  • Answering Machine Detection – Detect if an outbound voice call was answered by a human or an answering machine. Perform next steps accordingly.

  • Voicemail Transcription – Never Listen to Another Voicemail. Our premium voicemail transcriptions are real time, higher quality and very accurate.

  • Voice API Platform Queueing – Make multiple calls in a single API request. We handle call queueing for you so you don’t have to worry about building that.

  • Text to Speech – Speak dynamic text in 28 accents across various languages. Choose from female and male voices.

  • Realtime Call Notifications – Receive real-time callbacks over webhooks. Fetch detailed information including call duration, call status, billing info using our API.

  • Detailed Debug Logs – Debug and troubleshoot issues and problems faster with detailed logs. Drill down to the details to find the root cause.

  • Server Side SDKs – Program in your web language of choice with our server side SDKs in Java, C#, Python, Ruby, Nodejs or Golang

  • Reusable Templates – With a vast library of ready to use templates you can add powerful functionality quickly by writing minimal code.

  • Optimized Points of Presence – Our PoPs in 6 regions (California, Virginia, Singapore, Frankfurt, Sydney, Sao Paulo), means your calls are routed with lowest latency & highest voice quality.

  • Direct In-country Carrier Connections – Your voice calls are delivered using the one hop local in country carrier, directly connected with our nearest PoP for minimal latency & ensures no out-of-region audio looping.

  • Quality based routing – Our intelligent data-driven routing engine ensures that all of our downstream carriers are prioritized in real time based on quality including Average Call duration.

  • Any Phone Number – Connect phone calls over PSTN without having to deal with the complexity of telecom carriers in 200+ countries.

  • Browser Based Web Application – Integrate high quality voice calling into your web application using our pre-packaged javascript based browser SDK.

  • SIP Trunk – Connect and control your existing SIP infrastructure. Add powerful functionality to your existing systems on the cloud.

  • Mobile Application – Add voice calling into your iOS and Android apps using our powerful Mobile SDK optimized for battery life.

  • SIP Devices – Connect to your existing SIP enabled phones. All hardware and software phones that support SIP are supported.


Plivo also offers millions of toll-free, local, national and mobile numbers in over 120 countries and counting.

  • Toll-Free Numbers (Voice) – Increase your brand recall, credibility, sales with a better customer experience
  • Local Numbers (Voice + SMS) – Voice and SMS enabled regional numbers for localizing your business
  • National Numbers (Voice) – Voice-enabled National numbers to make and receive calls at attractive
  • Mobile Numbers (SMS + Voice) – High throughput SMS capable National numbers with inbound and outbound voice capabilities
  • SIP Devices – Exclusive Brand recognition for your message with higher throughput and performance
  • Bring Your Own Number (SMS + Voice) – Port your existing number at ease. Use your old number with Plivo features.
  • Quality inventory
  • Number Porting Facility
  • Compliance with Local Regulations
  • High Reputation Score
  • APIs and SDKs to Search/Purchase
  • Multi-function Numbers
  • Instant provisioning and activation
  • Prorated rentals
  • Call Whisper
  • Infinite scalability with unlimited channels

Voice API Integration Pricing:

Plivo offers pay as you go pricing as well as the ability to outline custom volume pricing by speaking with the company’s sales department. Pay as you go pricing varies by country. For the United States, rates are broken down as follows:

  • Regular Phone Numbers: $0.120/min to make calls, $0.0085/min to receive calls
  • Toll Free Numbers: $0.0030/min to make calls, $0.0180/min to receive calls
  • SIP Phone, Browser or App Calls: $0.0030/min to make calls, $0.0030/min to receive calls
  • Outbound voice calls to these destination prefixes:
    • 1 Prefix – $0.0120/min
    • 1900 Prefix – $0.06030/min
    • 1907 Prefix – $0.1790/min
    • 1808 Prefix – $0.0340/min

Zentrunk SIP Trunking Features:

Global Connectivity, unlimited concurrent calls with flexible pay-as-you-go pricing. Connect your VoIP infrastructure in minutes.

  • Guaranteed Quality – Your calls are terminated through one hop local carriers to give you low Post Dial Delay, guaranteed features such as CLI and DTMF and no out-of-region audio looping.
  • Global Infrastructure – Our PoPs, located in 6 regions (California, Oregon, Frankfurt, Singapore, Sydney, Sao Paulo) across 5 continents ensure that you experience low latency and high voice quality.
  • High Availability and Uptime – With a redundant infrastructure across multiple geographies and at least 3 local carrier connections across countries, Zentrunk promises a 99.95% uptime.
  • IP Authentication – Authenticate and access your SIP trunks using IP or credentials for added security.
  • Encrypted Trunks – Secure your trunks with Transport Layer Security (TLS) & Secure Real-time Transport Protocol (SRTP).
  • Fraud Protection & Alerts – Our systems automatically detect and alert you of fraudulent activity on your account.
  • Interoperability – Interop with standard Softswitches and IP-PBXs.
  • Self Service Portal – Easily access and manage your account analytics, logs and SIP trunks.
  • Separated Trunks – Each trunk has a unique SIP domain for easy traffic segmentation & management.

Zentrunk SIP Trunking Pricing:

While custom volume pricing is available as with other Plivo services, pay as you go rates in the United States are as follows for outbound SIP trunking:

  • Regular Phone Numbers: $0.0065/min outbound
  • United States 800 Numbers: $0.000/min outbound
  • United States Hawaii: $0.320/min outbound
  • United States Alaska: $0.1770/min outbound

Phlo Features & Pricing:

Plivo’s “Phlo” platform enables drag & drop call flow creation with pre-built templates that can be tailored to your needs. Call flow options include many of the capabilities already mentioned above, such as the ability to send account alerts, dispatch notifications, set custom reminders, record important customer information with voicemails while you are away, send & receive SMS and conduct surveys via text messages, call forwarding to another device such as your home or office number, conference calls to communicate with multiple people at once, as well as scalable cloud IVR for intelligent call routing.

Building call flows with Phlo is free. You only pay for calls & SMS. The company also boasts that Phlo supports the entire Plivo API and XML set, enabling customers to build flows from basic notifications to full-fledged call center. The service is hosted on Plvio’s infrastructure requiring no servers of your own.

Editor’s Bottom Line:

Aiming to simplify how businesses integrate communications in their applications, Plivo provides APIs that enable embedded voice calling and text messaging with flexible pay-as-you-go pricing. Since launching in 2011, the company has helped thousands of businesses of all sizes build voice and SMS applications including call centers, conferencing, two-factor authentication, mobile notifications, and more.

The company prides itself on not only offering simple solutions for customized cloud communications, but also competitive rate including volume discounts for larger customers as well as coverage that spans the globe instead of remaining largely exclusive to the U.S. or other limited geographies.

Beyond hosting infrastructure and developing the tech stack that powers its voice calling and text messaging, part of the simplicity of Plivo’s service stems from its assortment of prepackaged templates that reduce the amount of code required to integrate communication technologies in your application.

Likewise, the company’s Phlo platform provides a graphical user interface where you can drag and drop options to build custom call flows, and this feature is free for customers to use as desired – you only pay for the calls and text messages that come through your account.

While similar capabilities are available with larger cloud communication companies, few can claim to be as affordable or as flexible with pricing as Plivo.

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