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I will level with you. There is no best texting program. Unless you need a special feature or two, the best text messaging apps will be used by the people you want to send them to. Depending on where you are in the world, it could be iMessage, WhatsApp, Viber, LINE or even SMS.
How To Get Someone Else Text Messages To Your Phone
But if, for whatever reason, you have a choice about which messaging app to use—or you can convince the people you want to message to switch, here are five of the best texting apps to choose from.
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As a child of the 90s, I’ve been texting for as long as cell phones have been widespread and affordable (and, to be honest, a year or two before that). I also used text messaging for professional reasons—both to communicate with my remote colleagues and to review the apps myself.
I still believe that the best texting apps are usually the ones that will actually reply to you. If it’s an SMS or a smoke signal, you have full permission to use it. So when putting this list together, it freed me up to be a bit strict about the requirements for inclusion. Neither iMessage, SMS, nor Android Messages made this list. It’s not even what Google calls its latest messaging. A big reason to use one of those programs is your friends.
However, if you’re starting a group of friends, a desert island colony, or a fan club from scratch and you have to choose which device to use, here’s what you should look for in a messaging app:
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Texting applications use an Internet connection to send and receive messages. This is different from SMS, which uses your own carrier’s protocol to send and receive messages anywhere you have a cellular connection (even a weak one, without data). While SMS messages cost money — either on a per-message basis or included in your cellular plan — messages sent through data-only text apps will be free (even if the app isn’t).
To compile this list, I tested more than 30 different programs. Many fail because they do not meet the above criteria or because they are not fun to use. I spend a lot of time trying and texting about any app that looks like it might be a candidate for inclusion—plus, like I said, this is a category I have a lot of experience with, so I’ve spent a lot. of time on it. time in each of these applications has passed.
WhatsApp is the undisputed ruler of free mobile messaging in many parts of the world. Launched in 2009 as a way to send messages over a data connection instead of SMS, WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook in 2014. Since then, the service has grown both its functionality and user base. By 2022, it will have around two billion daily users, and it’s easy to see why: it’s an amazing service.
This app is a full messaging client that supports text chat, as well as photos, short videos, and voice messages. There is a status feature that allows you to share Instagram-like stories with your contacts. You can also send files (up to 2GB in size) to other users via WhatsApp. Chat in the form of one-on-one interactions with other WhatsApp users or group chats with up to 512 participants.
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Despite being the most popular messaging service in the world and owned by Facebook’s parent company Meta, WhatsApp has end-to-end encryption for all conversations. Everything you send, including file transfers, is fully encrypted. Encrypted messages are even deleted from WhatsApp servers after they are sent.
WhatsApp has a distinctive look and feel. The double tick next to each message indicates that the message has been sent (one tick) and delivered (two ticks). When the two ticks turn blue, you know the recipient has also read your message. You can further customize your experience by changing the chat wallpaper in the app’s settings, renaming groups, and setting custom alerts by chat.
WhatsApp users can make free voice and video calls to other users of the service. Group calls can be made with up to 32 people, and all communications are secured using the same end-to-end encryption. You can also download the WhatsApp desktop for Windows and Mac, or access the service via a browser at web.whatsapp.com, although in all cases your smartphone must still be switched on.
Viber is a great entry into the messaging space, with millions of users around the world. The app integrates text and media messaging with free voice and video calling services.
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Chat with individuals or create group chats with up to 250 participants, where you can share instant voice and video messages without having to make a phone call. It’s perfect for when you’re too busy talking and too lazy to type. While many other apps include voice messaging (like WhatsApp, above), Viber makes it easy to send video messages for a more personal touch. Plus, GIFs and stickers are built into your chats to help the conversation.
End-to-end encryption is standard in all one-on-one and group Viber chats. Channels and Communities, however, are not end-to-end encrypted (so it is impossible for new members to see chat history). It’s a small security sacrifice in the name of offering better service. In addition to making free voice and video calls to other Viber users, a service called Viber Out lets you make as many calls to any cell or landline in the world as you want for $5.99 a month. It’s like Skype, except with better security practices and a better smartphone app.
Viber uses a simple and minimal design with an optional dark mode available in the app’s Appearance menu. Chats and calls are delegated to separate tabs, with non-essential Viber features (like the Sticker Market) placed in a separate third tab. If the chat gets too noisy, you can swipe left and choose to mute or sleep. If you have an important conversation that you want to save, you can pin it.
Viber also offers Communities—essentially large group chats with strangers that you can join or start. These public chats can have an unlimited number of members and have powerful controls for administrators to moderate their chats: manage who is in the group and who can post, or change the look of the Community with a new group background and description. You can find Communities based on things like location, hobbies, and favorite teams. Think Reddit, but more like a group chat.
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Where Viber touches short in the occupation of the entire application. With a sticker store, all sorts of different chat rooms, and even the occasional ad, it’s a less satisfying experience than WhatsApp — especially if you don’t use its unique features like Viber Out.
Telegram is one of the original messaging apps that emphasizes the importance of security, although it requires a slightly different approach to end-to-end encryption to keep your conversations on its servers. This allows you to log in from multiple devices, which you can’t do with WhatsApp or Viber. Although both services offer desktop apps, they still send and receive all of your messages through your phone. If it’s off or not around, you won’t be able to log in, whereas with Telegram, you can.
You can use Telegram to make voice and video calls, and send text messages, photos, videos and files to other Telegram users. You can even create group chats with 200,000 participants or an unlimited number of channels.
If you want end-to-end encryption, you can enable it
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