Let’s be honest: not all of us love the experience of texting from a phone. There is too much Autocorrect, constant backspacing, and confusion on iMessage or your favorite messages app. Sometimes, it’s not so bad to sit down and write with a full keyboard in front of us, with each letter the size of a finger.
But before abandoning your phone, you need to know how to do it. Whether you don’t like Android messages or are sick of your iPhone and how it handles texting, working from a Windows or Mac computer can significantly improve how you communicate.
The only question is: what’s the best way to do it? Here are a few ideas.
What are the Ways to Text from Your Computer?
Option #1: Texting with Google Voice
Google Voice is a telephone service that you can create a new number, handle voicemail, or even text. It can mean you rely less on your phone and more on your computer to handle everything you need to do to ensure you have the complete texting experience from a desktop. The question is: how do you use it?
Voice.Google.com is a handy way to manage your communications, almost as if you’re using Gmail instead of texts. And rather than work through a wireless carrier, it will feel as simple as the usual features you’re used to from Google—setting Chrome to “dark mode,” for example, works here.
As a messaging service, Google Voice lets you click “Send a Message,” opening up a prompt for you to enter a recipient’s phone number. At that point, you can send your text, and voila—you’re sending texts from your computer.
Option #2: Send via Email
If you don’t want to open a new account, you can always send someone an email through their wireless carrier. You’ll have to know the domain for sending emails to a text inbox directly, so you’ll want to look these up for AT&T, for example, or Apple. But if you enter the ten-digit number, then “@,” and then the proper domain, you can send an email to a text message like any other email address.
If you’re unsure about the carrier’s texting email address domains, some common ones include messaging.sprintpcs.com, email.uscc.net, and txt.att.net. However, look up the relevant information on the carrier’s website to ensure this is up to date for the carrier you’re going for.
Option #3: Use slyText for Mass Texting
SlyText is an online texting service that lets you use web-based messaging to handle texting as easily as working through your host carrier. Yes, you can work it through your cell phone easily, but since this is an article about sending a new message via text that isn’t from a cell phone, it’s worth exploring how to use slyText on your desktop.
Open up slyText once you’ve signed up for it, enter your recipient’s 10-digit phone number, and begin typing away. You’ll then be able to exchange text messages with someone on their phone as if you’re both on your phone. You can receive messages, send gifs, and more.
Why Send Texts from a Desktop?
These options might have you thinking. Why worry about service providers, SMS messages, web browsers, and a Desktop app when you can use your phone? And while it’s a good question, it does have a lot of answers. Consider some of the benefits of sending texts from the Desktop:
• Organization. Sometimes, it’s easier to see everything on a big screen. This is especially true if you consistently use desktop computing to keep things organized; the small mobile screen isn’t going to cut it. You can also use apps like slyText to organize your text threads better, so everything you need is just a quick click away.
• The typing experience. We all know how frustrating it can be to try to type something on a mobile phone and have none of it register. Either autocorrect incorrectly “corrects” you, or you type in something wrong because the keys are so minor. If you constantly have to backspace your way through text conversations—valid for both Mac and Android users—you may want to consider texting from a desktop more often.
• Speed. If you can type with a proficient WPM (words per minute) count on the desktop, you’d be amazed at how quickly you can write things out on the desktop. You have to copy a long bit of text to send someone, which is more like an email. Do you want to needle your way through a mobile phone? Not necessarily.
• You are treating it like email. Let’s say you do all of your work from your email inbox. Your day revolves around your email account. What if you need to text? Suddenly you have to get off the computer, grab the phone from where it’s been charging, and—well, it’s all a bit of a hassle. Sending texts from the desktop helps you keep everything on one screen, with just a few clicks to move things around. And you can treat it like email, allowing you to minimize the screen when it’s time for some distraction-free work.
• Ease of use.You don’t need a lot of advanced QR code work or addresses like tmomail.net or vtext.com to handle everything you need to do through a desktop computer. You just need a service like slyText.
Not all multimedia is easy to use. We’re used to being at the mercy of a phone app to handle our texts. But what if it was easier through a simple web page? Sending free text messages shouldn’t be such a hassle—and we don’t think it has to be.
Whether you just want to send SMS messages or stop yourself from getting so many text notifications on the phone, there are numerous advantages to texting through the web. You don’t necessarily need an Apple ID or an Android phone as long as you have Wi-Fi. You just need slyText.