Make a call

You can make an outbound call through our Voice API by sending a HTTP POST request to our RESTFul call resource.

That's right, it is now actually possible to curl someone... See what we did there :)

How To Make an Outgoing Call

Here is how it all comes together...

1. Your application invokes our REST resource for making calls. You can use the call() function in our helper gateway classes to do this (see below)

2. Our API calls the user(s) specified in the request

3. The user answers the call

4. Our API sends a POST request to the URL that you have set for that phone number in your Voice Dashboard. The parameters passed in with this request are outlined in the section on handling calls

5. Your application responds with XML that tells our API how to handle the call. This XML will typically contain a list of actions that our API will execute in sequence.

6. Our API translates those actions into events or messages relayed back to the caller

You need your AfricasTalking username and APIKey for any request to our API. If you don't have an APIKey, you can generate one from your applications settings page.

The VB.NET code snippet below shows how to make a call using our API.

The code uses our VB.NET gateway class: AfricasTalkingGateway.vb [ Download]

Imports System.IO
Imports System.Collections
Imports System.Collections.Generic

Public Class Application
	Public Shared Sub Main()
			' Specify your login credentials
			Dim username As String = "MyAppUsername"
			Dim apikey As String   = "myAPIKey"
			' Create a new instance of our awesome gateway class
			Dim gateway As New AfricasTalkingGateway(username, apikey)
			' Specify your AfricasTalking phone number in international format. eg +254711082XXX			Dim from As String = "AfricasTalkingPhoneNumber"
			' Specify the numbers that you want to call to in a comma-separated list in international format
			Dim to As String = "+254711XXXYYY,+254733YYYZZZ"
			' Wrap the call in a try-catch block.
			' Any gateway error will be captured by our custom Exception class below
				Dim results As Object() =, to)
				Dim result As Object
				for each result in results
					' Only status "Queued" means the call was successfully placed
					System.Console.WriteLine("Status: " + result("status"))
					System.Console.WriteLine("phoneNumber: " + result("phoneNumber"))

				' Our API will now contact your callback URL once the recipient answers the call!  
			catch ex As AfricasTalkingGatewayException
			End Try 
	End Sub
End Class

Our REST resource for making calls is located at: In order to make a call, you will need to pass in the following parameters within a POST request:
Variable Name Location Description
apikey Header Your API Key, which you can generate from your dashboard
username Body Your Africa's Talking account username
from Body Your Africa's Talking phone number (in international format)
to Body The phone number that you wish to dial (in international format)

You can check the HTTP Response Code to determine whether the request was successful. Any response code other than 201 (Created) indicates that the call was not initiated

Example using CURL client
curl -H "Accept: application/xml" -H "Apikey:fb752d3417021812f0961y6c9464832dd1adb1e555c73f1e7c32bcc006488674" -d "username=myUsername&to=+254711XXXYYY&from=+254711082XXX"