Send a Text Message

In this code snippet you learn how to send a WhatsApp message using the Messages API. For WhatsApp the maximum text size is 4096 characters, including Unicode.

For a step-by-step guide to this topic, you can read our tutorial Sending WhatsApp messages with the Messages API.

IMPORTANT: If a customer has not messaged you first, then the first time you send a message to a user, WhatsApp requires that the message contains a template. This is explained in more detail in the Understanding WhatsApp topic.

It is possible to format selected text inside the message using formatting characters. The \n character can also be used to insert new lines. The formatting options are summarized in the following table:

Formatting Example
Italicize Italicize _this_ text.
Bold Bold *this* text.
Strikethrough Strikethrough ~this~ text.
Monospace Monospace ```this``` text.
New line Use \n to insert a new line.

Example

Ensure the following variables are set to your required values using any convenient method:

Key Description
BASE_URL For production use the base URL is https://api.nexmo.com/. For sandbox testing the base URL is https://messages-sandbox.nexmo.com/.
MESSAGES_API_URL For production use the Messages API endpoint is https://api.nexmo.com/v0.1/messages. For sandbox testing the Messages API endpoint is https://messages-sandbox.nexmo.com/v0.1/messages.
WHATSAPP_NUMBER The WhatsApp number that has been allocated to you by Nexmo. For sandbox testing the number is 14157386170.
TO_NUMBER The phone number you are sending the message to.

NOTE: Don't use a leading + or 00 when entering a phone number, start with the country code, for example, 447700900000.

Prerequisites

Create an application
If you do not have an application you can create one. Make sure you also configure your webhooks.

Write the code

Add the following to send-text.sh:

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curl -X POST $MESSAGES_API_URL \
  -H 'Authorization: Bearer '$JWT\
  -H 'Content-Type: application/json' \
  -H 'Accept: application/json' \
  -d $'{
    "from": { "type": "whatsapp", "number": "'$WHATSAPP_NUMBER'" },
    "to": { "type": "whatsapp", "number": "'$TO_NUMBER'" },
    "message": {
      "content": {
        "type": "text",
        "text": "This is a WhatsApp Message sent from the Messages API"
      }
    }
  }'

View full source

Run your code

Save this file to your machine and run it:

bash send-text.sh

Prerequisites

Create an application
If you do not have an application you can create one. Make sure you also configure your webhooks.
Install dependencies

npm install nexmo@beta

Write the code

Add the following to send-text.js:

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const Nexmo = require('nexmo')

const nexmo = new Nexmo({
  apiKey: NEXMO_API_KEY,
  apiSecret: NEXMO_API_SECRET,
  applicationId: NEXMO_APPLICATION_ID,
  privateKey: NEXMO_APPLICATION_PRIVATE_KEY_PATH
}, {
  apiHost: BASE_URL
})

nexmo.channel.send(
  { "type": "whatsapp", "number": TO_NUMBER },
  { "type": "whatsapp", "number": WHATSAPP_NUMBER },
  {
    "content": {
      "type": "text",
      "text": "This is a WhatsApp Message text message sent using the Messages API"
    }
  },
  (err, data) => {
    if (err) {
      console.error(err);
    } else {
      console.log(data.message_uuid);
    }
  }
);

View full source

Run your code

Save this file to your machine and run it:

node send-text.js

Try it out

When you run the code a WhatsApp message is sent to the destination number.