fmMMS Now Supports Plivo MMS Gateway

fmMMS, our FileMaker solution that lets you send and receive MMS messages from the FileMaker Platform, has just been updated to include support for the Plivo MMS Gateway based in the USA. You can send and receive MMS messages in the United States and Canada with fmMMS and Plivo.

You can download a trial version of fmMMS to test with the Plivo MMS Gateway from here. You can also sign up for a trial account with Plivo. More information on using the Plivo Gateway with fmMMS is available on our support site.

fmSMS Now Supports Sendsei SMS Gateway

fmSMS, our FileMaker solution for sending and receiving SMS messages from the Claris FileMaker Platform has been updated to support the Sendsei SMS Gateway based in Australia.

Sendsei uses local carriers to guarantee 100% delivery rate and can send messages globally to over 30 countries including Australia, Hong Kong, India, New Zealand, Singapore, the UK, the US, and many more.

To download a trial version of fmSMS to test with the Sendsei SMS Gateway visit the fmSMS website here:

https://www.fmsms.com/fmsms-now-supports-sendsei-sms-gateway/

fmSMS Now Supports The SMS Works SMS Gateway

fmSMS, our FileMaker solution for sending and receiving SMS messages from the Claris FileMaker Platform has been updated to support The SMS Works SMS Gateway based in the UK.

The SMS Works is a low cost SMS API for developers and their prices are amongst the lowest in the UK. You can signup for a trial account with The SMS Works and receive 50 free credits to use for testing.

To download a trial version of fmSMS to test with the The SMS Works SMS Gateway visit the fmSMS website here:

https://www.fmsms.com/fmsms-now-supports-the-sms-works-sms-gateway/

Dynamic Delivery Zone Checking with FileMaker Pro 19

One of our favourite features of the FileMaker 19 Platform that was released earlier this year is the ability to interact with a FileMaker web viewer using the new JavaScript integration capabilities. This update allows FileMaker scripts to directly call JavaScript functions and pass multiple parameters, and also allows the JavaScript running in the web viewer to run a FileMaker script in the current file and pass in a script parameter.

I was looking forward to taking advantage of this in client projects over time and was recently able to use this feature to help a client solve a particularly challenging problem in a relatively short space of time.

Our client runs a food delivery service, delivering gourmet recipe mealkits to customers homes each week. With the COVID 19 restrictions in Australia they have seen a lot growth in the past 6 months and an increase in the number of weekly orders. They have a defined delivery zone setting out the boundaries of where they will deliver to which is changing over time, but they needed a way to determine whether a customer’s address was inside or outside their set delivery zone.

I’ve done a lot of work with the Google Maps JavaScript API over the years and wondered whether that could be of any assistance here. A few minutes of research led me to their Geometry library which includes a containsLocation() function that can determine whether a given point falls within a polygon. All that is required is the geocode of the address in question (latitude and longitude) and a polygon representing the area you wish to check against, which itself is a series of geocodes that define the boundaries.

To create the polygon representing the delivery zone boundaries I turned to Google Earth which has a tool that allows you to draw a line or a shape representing the area you wish to define. I created a region for parts of Sydney, Australia that would be my test delivery zone region using Google Earth which is represented by the yellow lines in this screenshot:

I was then able to export that area as a .kml file which contained the series of geocodes that made up the boundaries of my test delivery zone. I then converted that file into a .txt and imported the geocodes into a FileMaker table so I could then recreate the delivery zone polygon that was required by the Google Maps API.

I also used the Google Maps Geocoding API to convert customer addresses into a geocode which is also required to pass to the Google Maps API to determine if it is inside or outside the polygon. I was now ready to bring this all together to have a button on my FileMaker layout that allowed me to programatically check an address against the delivery zone and return a result indicating if it was inside or outside, as well as visually showing the location of the address on the map so you could visually where it was in relation to the boundaries.

Using the new Perform JavaScript in Web Viewer script step in FileMaker Pro 19 I was able to call a JavaScript function to check the customer’s address and have that in turn call a FileMaker script with the result as the parameter. When setting up your web viewer you will need to make sure you enable the new Allow JavaScript to perform FileMaker scripts option (this is disabled by default when adding a new web viewer to a layout):

To have your JavaScript return a result back to FileMaker by calling a FileMaker script and passing a parameter you will need to call this function:

FileMaker.PerformScript ( script, parameter );

In my example I am calling a FileMaker script named Update Zone Check with a parameter of zoneCheckResult which returns true if the customer address is inside the delivery zone, or false if it is outside:

FileMaker.PerformScript('Update Zone Check', zoneCheckResult);

Here’s a screenshot showing a successful result (you can see the address pin is inside the shaded delivery zone):

and here’s a screenshot showing a record where the address is outside the delivery zone:

In each case the Inside Delivery Zone field in the bottom left corner was updated dynamically by the FileMaker JavaScript interaction. We’ve put together a short video showing this in action which you can view below or directly on YouTube here.

N.B. the FileMaker Pro 19.1.2 Updater introduced a new version of the FileMaker.PerformScript() function that allows you to control how running scripts are handled when JavaScript calls a FileMaker script. A new function:

FileMaker.PerformScriptWithOption ( script, parameter, option )

now lets you specify 6 options that determine how a currently running FileMaker script is handled. The FileMaker.PerformScript() function is still supported and uses the default ‘Continue’ option. See the release notes for further details on the available options.

fmMMS Now Supports SMS Global MMS Gateway

fmMMS, our FileMaker solution that lets you send and receive MMS messages from the FileMaker Platform, has just been updated to include support for the SMS Global MMS Gateway based in Australia.

You can download a trial version of fmMMS to test with the SMS Global MMS Gateway from here. You can also sign up for a trial account with SMS Global and receive 25 free test credits. More information on using the SMS Global Gateway with fmMMS is available on our support site.

Databuzz releases fmMMS – Send and Receive MMS Messages from the Claris FileMaker Platform

Sydney, Australia – September 15, 2020 – Databuzz today announced fmMMS, a FileMaker solution that lets you send and receive MMS messages from the FileMaker Platform.

fmMMS allows you to send MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) messages from the FileMaker Platform to almost any mobile phone in the world via one of the supported MMS Gateways, reaching over 1,000 mobile networks in more than 220 countries. MMS allows you to add any kind of multimedia content to your messages, such as images, QR codes, audio and video which are sent directly to the recipient’s phone.

MMS is perfect for sending promotional messages about new products or services, coupons or special offers, special event invitations, tickets (including QR codes) and real estate property information. With MMS you get the benefits of SMS such as high open rates compared to email, with the ability to add multimedia content to your messages, add a Subject line to act like a message headline and increase the amount of text you can send. MMS messages appear more visually appealing to the recipient and can lead to higher engagement with your customers*.

fmMMS features include:

  • works with FileMaker Pro 16 or later
  • uses all native FileMaker scripts and functions (no plug-ins required)
  • completely unlocked for you to integrate into your own FileMaker solution
  • can be hosted by FileMaker Pro or FileMaker Server 
  • works with Macintosh and Windows

“We’ve been helping customers integrate SMS with their FileMaker solutions for over 20 years and have had many requests for MMS integration,” said Andrew Duncan, CEO of Databuzz. “We’ve made fmMMS as easy to use and integrate as fmSMS – we can’t wait to see how our customers use fmMMS.”

fmMMS supports multiple MMS Gateways internationally and supports the following features*:

  • Send single and bulk MMS messages (messages are typically delivered in under 15 seconds)
  • 2 Way MMS – allow recipients to reply to messages and have them appear in fmMMS
  • Works with multiple MMS Gateway providers internationally
  • Delayed Delivery – send a message now for delivery at a future time
  • Delivery Receipts – track the status of sent messages
  • Message Logging – track the history of all sent messages
  • Message templates – create an unlimited number of pro forma templates
  • Send Messages to WhatsApp Users using the Twilio API for WhatsApp
  • Support for Webhooks: have incoming messages and delivery status updates pushed to your FileMaker Server automatically

Availability, Pricing, and Compatibility

fmMMS is available in a number of licenses: Company, Product (Vertical Solution) and Developer. It is available now from the Databuzz website at https://www.databuzz.com.au/fmmms/. Company Licenses start at AUD $695.00. fmMMS requires FileMaker Pro v16 or later and an account with one of the supported MMS Gateways.

* Not all MMS Gateways support all features of fmMMS. Some features might incur additional charges by your selected MMS Gateway. Webhooks require hosting by FileMaker Server and the Data API or Custom Web Publishing using the PHP API and a static IP address, or a web server running PHP.

Media/Customer Contact:

Andrew Duncan

Phone: +61 418 468 103

sales@databuzz.com.au

About Databuzz: Databuzz is a long-standing member of the FileMaker Business Alliance. We have been developing and deploying FileMaker solutions for clients in Australia and internationally since 1999. Our clients are individuals, small-medium businesses, government agencies and multi-national corporations. Databuzz was founded by Andrew Duncan, a Certified FileMaker 18 Developer. For more information please visit our website at https://www.databuzz.com.au.

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FileMaker is a trademark of FileMaker, Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

New Databuzz Support Site Now Live

We’re pleased to announce that our new support portal is now live and available at:

https://support.databuzz.com.au

You can also access this via any of the Support options in the navigation menus.

Our new support site allows you to more easily search our support content and also allows us to link to individual answers and videos. We’ve been busy converting all our FAQ content and videos for all our individual Products to the new site and will continue to add more content over the coming months.

You can also use the Contact option on the support site to send a support request with attachments directly from our website. If you have any suggestions about how we can further improve our support site/services please get in touch or leave a comment below.

fmAccounting Link (Xero Edition) v2.1 Now Supports Xero Webhooks

We’ve just released a free update to fmAccounting Link (Xero Edition) v2, our FileMaker solution that integrates with the Xero Cloud Accounting software, to support for Xero Webhooks for both the FileMaker Data API and PHP API. We had hoped to include this with v2 when it was released earlier this year but are pleased to now make this functionality available as a free update to existing customers.

Webhooks allow you to subscribe to automatically receive notifications from Xero when certain events happen – at present this is limited to Contacts and Invoices events. You can receive notifications when Contacts and Invoices are either created or updated and have fmAccounting Link (Xero Edition) automatically update the Contact/Invoice or create the new Contact/Invoice.

This is particularly helpful when an Invoice has been paid in Xero and you wish to have the corresponding Invoice in FileMaker updated to reflect this. Using the supplied PHP Webhooks files and either the FileMaker Data API or the PHP API you can receive these notification from Xero and have the changes automatically reflected in your FileMaker system.

For further details on setting up Xero Webhooks see our fmAccounting Link (Xero Edition) v2 Webhooks page for full details. We also have a video showing the setup and use of Xero Webhooks on our fmAccounting Link (Xero Edition) videos page (or watch directly on YouTube here)

The full list of changes are listed in the version history notes here. Existing customers can download this version from the link on your original order email (contact us if you need the link to be reset etc).

Coming Soon – fmMMS

It’s been almost 20 years since we first started integrating the FileMaker Platform with SMS Gateways, allowing our customers to send and receive SMS (Short Message Service) messages from their FileMaker solutions to their contacts all around the world. In that time we’ve released four versions of fmSMS, our FileMaker solution that works with over 70 SMS Gateways internationally reaching over 1,000 mobile networks in more than 220 countries.

During that time we’ve had a number of requests to implement MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) functionality as well as SMS, and have done a number of custom integrations over the years allowing customers to extend fmSMS to both send MMS messages and receive MMS messages. MMS has a number of benefits over the text based SMS service, including:

  • MMS allows you to add any kind of multimedia content to your messages, such as images, QR codes, audio and video directly to a phone
  • MMS also increases the amount of text you can send in a single message (SMS is limited to 160 characters per segment)
  • MMS includes an additional Subject line which acts like a headline to your message
  • MMS messages appear more visually appealing to the recipient and can lead to higher engagement with your customers

MMS messages also benefit from the well documented advantages of SMS compared to email, including:

  • The open rate for an SMS is nearly 98% while it’s 20 to 30% for email
  • Over 95% of SMS messages received are opened and read
  • 90% of all text messages are read within 3 seconds

We’ve been hard at work on creating a sister product to fmSMS called, naturally, fmMMS, that is almost ready to be released. We’re in the final stages of testing and documentation and plan to release fmMMS later this month.

The main features of fmMMS include:

  • send an MMS to a single contact
  • send a bulk MMS to multiple contacts
  • check the status of sent messages
  • works with the FileMaker v16 Platform or later
  • Webhooks support for automatically receiving incoming MMS messages for both the FileMaker Data API and the PHP API

fmMMS uses all native FileMaker scripts and functions (no plug-ins required) and like our other products it will be 100% unlocked for you to integrate into your own FileMaker solution.

We’ve put together a short preview video showing fmMMS in action sending and receiving a picture message. You can watch this below or via this link on YouTube:

If you would like to be notified when fmMMS is released please subscribe to our newsletter or follow us on Twitter or Facebook.

Auto Place Makes Agreement Setup Easy with fmESignature Link (DocuSign Edition)

We recently released a free update to fmESignature Link (DocuSign Edition), our FileMaker solution for integrating with the DocuSign eSignature platform, that included support for AutoPlace. AutoPlace (also referred to as anchor tagging) is an advanced field action in DocuSign that adds fields near each occurrence of a given string in a template or document.

With a typical document you would need to specify where you wanted the DocuSign tabs (fields) to appear on the document, for example to capture a signature, initials, name or date. In the fmESignature Link file the setup for adding Template Tabs looks like this:

It can be somewhat fiddly while you work out the coordinates from the left and top of the page for each tab and can involve a bit of trial and error before you get the positioning right. This also means that your tabs are hardcoded into fixed positions on a specific page, which is fine for fixed length documents where these positions will never change.

If you’re working with a variable length document, such as the legal agreement where the length of the agreement could change depending on the number of included clauses, then you won’t be able to know in advance what page and what position to place the these tabs. Fortunately DocuSign has a solution to this problem called AutoPlace, which involves the use of hidden strings that won’t appear anywhere else in your document. The tab/field is then automatically placed in the position of your hidden text string.

This makes setting up Template Tabs in the fmESignature Link file much simpler: instead of working out the pixel positions from the left and top of your page you simply enter the matching string to look for like this:

If your agreement PDF is being generated from a FileMaker layout you simply place the corresponding string on the layout like this (I’ve changed the text colour to red to make it visible, but you would set this to the same colour as the background of your agreement which is typically white)

DocuSign then automatically place the specified tab at the position of the matching string, regardless of which page or where it appears on the final document. With AutoPlace you can have your templates setup for eSignature with DocuSign within minutes using the fmESignature Link (DocuSign Edition) solution.

We’ve added a support article that has all the details of using AutoPlace with fmESignature Link, along with a short video demonstrating the setup of this which you can watch below or on YouTube here.