Configuring IFTTT to Text

Remember this diagram from the start of the tutorial? The green box in the lower right is If This Then That (ifttt.com), a web site that monitors streams for events and takes actions based on them. If This Then That (IFTTT) uses programs called recipes to react to things on the Internet. There re two components to the recipe we'll use that are important: one is the ability for IFTTT to read an io.adafruit.com topic, and the other is the abilit to send SMS text messages (note that IFTTT imposes a 100 message per month limit).

Here is what your page will look like when you're done (except it will show your phone number):

Let's get started making the recipe!

Step 1 - Add the Adafruit.IO monitor

Click the light blue "Create a Recipe" button on the right side of the landing page. You can see it in the above image. This will bring you to a page that looks like this:

The first step is to define the trigger that will cause the recipe to run. To do that, click the "this" link.

Now, I already have Adafruit as one of my trigger channels because I've already built the alarm system. You will probably need to use the search function to look for "Adafruit," or click the "view all channels" link. Find Adafruit and add it to your list of trigger channels. Then, click it to select it.

This will take you to the second recipe configuration step:

You want to click on "Monitor a feed on Adafruit IO" (the one on the right) for your security system. The next dialog will look something like this:

In the dropdown menus, select your alarm feed, "not equal to," and enter "INFO" in the text box. This will ensure that any text that says "ALARM" will get sent to you. When you have this dialog box configured correctly, click the "Create Trigger" button.

There! Now you've successfully created the trigger for your alarm notification!

Next, we'll configure the response to the trigger. Click the blue "that" link....

The action channel you want is labeled "SMS." It didn't appear in my default list, so I had to search for it just like I had to search for the Adafruit trigger. When you find SMS, add it to your list of action channels and select it. This will open a dialog page with only one option to select - "Send me an SMS."

Select it. That will bring up the next step, which is configuring the message you want to send when you get an alarm. I use the default message, though you're obviously free to expreiment with whatever format you like.

When you're happy with the formatting, click the "Create Action" button. This will bring up the final page in the IFTTT configuration. I already have my phone number configured in IFTTT, so I can't easily show you what the last page looks like. You'll need to enter your mobile number and verify it, after which you'll be all set!

That's it! Now you've written an IFTTT recipe to monitor your io.adafruit.com feed and text you a message when it sees an alarm!

Next: Alternative designs and enhancements

This guide was first published on Jun 23, 2016. It was last updated on Jun 23, 2016. This page (Configuring IFTTT to Text) was last updated on Jul 20, 2019.