The ability to send a text message from a computer is something you probably don't think about until you need to do it. But it's easy to set up and, once you have, you'll probably find you use it more often than you'd think. Being able to text from a laptop might be more convenient if you're already using that device anyway.
How to use Android Messages for Web
Starting this week, desktop support is rolling out for Android Messages. You'll be able to send text messages from your PC, synched to your Android phone.
In order to start using Android Messages you need to visit messages.android.com and scan the QR code using the companion app on your phone (if you're not running stock Android you may first need to download Android Messages free from Google Play). Do this by launching the Android Messages app, tapping the More options button and selecting 'Android Messages for Web'.
Unfortunately that latter piece of the puzzle is not quite in place just yet, though expect it imminently. In the meantime, you likely already have some options you can use for sending a message from your computer.
Other methods for sending a text from Windows or Mac
If you're an iPhone user who also has a Mac you can use the Messages app on your Mac itself, or if you use a Windows PC iPadian might be able to let you access iMessage.
Email to SMS gateways allow you to send a text message through your regular email client, but in the UK they're primarily paid services used for bulk marketing messages. A better alternative is to use a free app such as MightyText, which can send texts messages from a PC to a phone.
How to text from PC to phone with MightyText
- Launch Google Play on your phone, then search for and install MightyText
- On your computer browser visit MightyText.net/install in your computer browser
- Scroll down to step 2 - Run on your computer (or tablet)
- Select your browser. We're using Chrome.
- Click the link to install the MightyText Chrome extension
- Click the link to launch the MightyText Web App
- In future you can access the web app from the MightyText icon in your browser bar
- Click New Message, select a recipient, enter your message and hit the Send icon
Note that the MightyText app required for setup is available only on Android.