The Difference Between A2P/MT and DLR/Mon

TeleOSS SMS Gateway MO & MT SMS
20 Sep

The Difference Between A2P/MT and DLR/Mon

Posted by TeleOSS

There are countless acronyms that might confuse you in the SMS industry, especially when more than one term is used for the one thing. That’s why we decided to help you understand this particular language. Getting familiarized with SMS industry jargon is taking a bold step.

Let’s start off with MO versus MT messages. These two terms are commonly used by industry experts and professionals.

What Do They Mean?

1. MO message

The acronym MO stands for “mobile originated” so MO messaging means Mobile Originated Messaging. It simply refers to a message sent from a mobile phone. More accurately, it’s a message that a subscriber or customer sends from a cell phone to a mobile SMS provider and mobile marketing via the SMS platform.

This implies that MO message is the very first step in SMS marketing after the marketer informs people that they can participate and win or at least get some benefits just by sending a message with a specific keyword to an assigned virtual number or short code.

For example, if a pizza restaurant plans to reward its regular customers with a special discount SMS voucher, the restaurant can do the organizing and marketing of this SMS marketing campaign easily by sending SMS info to customers who have already opted in to receive notifications from their favorite pizza restaurant.

The restaurant can as well share the update via its social media profiles, or even adverts on its walls. Now, the next step is MO message, coming from the customer who wishes to participate. He just needs to send a keyword to a specific number to participate in it and win.


Step 1: The marketing message sent via SMS or promoted through other online/offline marketing channels:

“Send PIZZA to 12345 for 25% off your next order!”

Step 2: The customer sends MO message consisting of:

Keyword: PIZZA

Short code: 12345

The crux is that MO message originates from a mobile phone and is being sent to the system through a specific virtual number or a short code.

What Is An MT Message?

MT is a term that stands for “mobile terminated” and hence, MT message means Mobile Terminated message. This implies that MT message gets terminated on the cell phone or, to put it simply, it’s a message sent from a mobile SMS provider system to a subscriber’s cell phone.

Therefore, this message is terminated on the cell phone and that explains why you have the name mobile terminated. This type of SMS message can be triggered by MO message as an appropriate response to a particular action taken by the sender of an MO message to the system.

As soon as the system receives the customer’s MO message (keyword PIZZA sent to short code 12345), the short code sends back a new message to the customer’s phone. The message sent is called a mobile terminated (MT) message.

In the example we used earlier, when a customer sends the keyword “PIZZA” to 12345 (short code), this MO message triggers the response message (MT message) carrying the discount SMS voucher and information like: “Show this voucher for 25% off your next order.”

In conclusion, the whole process starts off with a mobile originated (MO) message and ends with a mobile terminated (MT) message. If you want to learn more about the MO/MT message types, read our blog post about A2P SMS Messaging for Enterprises.

About us

TeleOSS is a top-ranking SMS gateway software solution and VAS solution provider in the world. With over a decade of experience in solution designing and development, TeleOSS solutions are accessible in more than 60 countries including UK, US, Australia, Africa, India and Singapore.

TeleOSS offers complete sets of solution platforms with a focus on the bulk SMS industry. TeleOSS SMS gateway software solution has also been awarded the best software award in 2014. Our set of solutions are designed to support large scale SMS and OTT messaging volumes along with innovative features to provide you with the best in class services at cost-effective rates.