JSR 212, Server API for Mobile Services: Messaging - SAMS: Messaging, is now available for review. This specification will define a protocol agnostic messaging API for composing, sending and receiving short and multimedia messages.
Download the specification here, where you can also nominate yourself for the expert group:
This JSR will define a standard, portable and protocol agnostic messaging API for SMS and MMS, which enables composing, sending and receiving short messages and multimedia messages. Multimedia message is a message containing text, images and sound. Short messages primarily contain text only, but they can also be used as a bearer for binary data. Both message types are mainly aimed to be sent from a mobile terminal to a mobile terminal. However, there is an increasing need to be able to send these messages also from J2SE/J2EE applications. Content creation tools for images and sound are out of scope. Multimedia messaging service is one of the primary services mainly targeting the third generation mobile system (3G), but applicable also for GSM. SMS was already introduced for GSM networks. Both synchronous and asynchronous message processing will be supported where applicable.
This specification will define a high-level messaging API, which is independent of the underlying network protocols, data formats and technologies for communicating with SMS and MMS servers. The run-time architecture will also enable easy plug-in of implementations for existing and future SMS and MMS protocols, data formats and technologies. It will be possible to specify at the run-time which SMS or MMS implementation driver is used. It may also be possible in the future to add support for other messaging standards than SMS and MMS.
This JSR will be specified within the JAIN community.
SMS messaging is already part of the Wireless Messaging API, which is an optional package of the MIDP2.0 profile. Besides the fact that this API is also meant for J2EE clients, I don't see why they needed to introduce yet another API because now MIDP2.0 developers have to chose between this API and the Wireless Messaging API. Besides that, clients receiving SMS messages must have both API's installed to be compatible (unless the messages are similar for both API's, which I doubt).
One thing a J2EE API for SMS messaging enables is spam. It is not yet a problem for European mobile phone users, but for Asian users I heard spam is becomming worse and worse. Especially when you realise that the receiver might also have to pay for the spam. Spam on a mobile phone is also harder to ignore than e-mail spam since even deleting it is more cumbersome. Let's hope we can avoid being spammed on the device that is becomming more and more important in all aspects of life, the mobile phones.