Twilio for .NET Developers Part 1: Introducing the Twilio Helper Libraries

 Today we kick off a new series of blog posts that introduce and walk you through using the different .NET Helper Libraries that Twilio provides. These libraries simplify using the Twilio REST API for .NET developers, and provide as set of utilities that make it easy to work with TwiML and Twilio Client.

Introducing the Twilio API Helper Libraries

Twilio provides an easy to learn and use REST API that allows you to quickly integrate Voice and SMS communication in your application.  REST is a fantastic and simple communication protocol because it makes the Twilio available to any platform that can make HTTP calls, but on the .NET platform it does require a bit of common plumbing code.

To help .NET developers get productive with Twilio faster, and avoid having to write that plumbing code, Twilio provides a set of .NET helper libraries for .NET developers that takes care of that for them.   These helper libraries wrap various aspects of Twilio to provide simple and easy ways to interact with the Twilio REST API, Twilio Client and to generate TwiML responses.

Twilio provides five libraries for .NET developers:

Twilio.API The core Twilio library that wraps the Twilio REST API in a friendly .NET library.  This library is available in .NET, Silverlight and Windows Phone 7 flavors.
Twilio.TwiML Provides a .NET friendly way to generate TwiML markup
Twilio.MVC For developers using ASP.NET MVC, this library includes a TwilioController and TwiML ActionResult and request validation attribute
Twilio.WebMatrix For developers using Microsoft free WebMatrix development tool, this library contains Razor syntax helpers for various Twilio actions
Twilio.Client.Capability Contains the Capability token generator for use with the Twilio Client JavaScript SDK

* Note that all libraries require .NET 3.5, Silverlight 4 or Windows Phone 7 or later.

Getting the Libraries

The libraries are provided in binary form through the NuGet package manager extension available for Visual Studio 2010 and WebMatrix, however you can download the source code for all of these libraries, submit bugs and feature requests, or even contribute your own code to the libraries using GitHub.  The GitHub site also includes a Wiki that contains complete documentation for using the libraries.

In the next post, we’ll look at how you can get started using the different available helper libraries by adding them to your project in Visual Studio or WebMatrix.

This series is written by Twilio Developer Evangelist Devin Rader. As a co-founder of the St. Louis .NET User Group, a current board member of the Central New Jersey .NET User Group and a former INETA board member, he’s an active supporter of the .NET developer community. He’s also the co-author or technical editor of numerous books on .NET including Wrox’s Professional Silverlight 4 and Wrox’s Professional ASP.NET 4. Follow Devin on Twitter @devinrader

  • Richard Reukema

    I have watched Twillo for a long time now, but didn’t have the time to invest in understanding the TwiML.  As a full time .Net developer, I can’t believe it has taken Twillio this long to come out with a robust API for .Net developers!  Looking forward to diving in and creating a solution that will be disruptive to so many telco business models that have yet to understand what Twilllo is.

  • Damian Shaw

    hey – how would Twilio work for adding SMS to a .Net 1.2 WinForms app?

    • Devin

      @5f68cab649b0df08afaa0f82444a1359:disqus : Right now our .NET wrapper libraries require .NET 3.5 or above, but remember that all the wrapper is doing is providing a way to make HTTP calls to our REST API.  So if your using a version of .NET earlier that 3.5, you can still make those calls yourself using the HttpWebRequest object.