Text message without a phone?
August 6, 2010 11:30 AM   Subscribe

How do I send a text message from a computer? This is maybe easy, maybe tricky.

I am without a phone at the moment and would like to communicate with friends who are away from email.

I found a page that explains how to deliver emails as texts to someone's phone: here, however, this method requires you know the recipient's cell carrier. I don't know the carriers of the friends I want to message. Is there a different way to do this knowing only the phone number of the recipient?
posted by mai to Technology (21 answers total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
 
I should add that I have a still-active t-mobile account but have lost my phone. I would like to be able to receive responses as well if possible.
posted by mai at 11:32 AM on August 6, 2010 [1 favorite]




You can send an sms via skype. In addition, you cant set it to show up as your number (or not while you don't have a phone).
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 11:34 AM on August 6, 2010


I use txt2day.com, and it's always worked pretty well for me. They have a service that lets them guess your friend's cell phone carrier based off of their number. It's not a perfect solution, but it's helpful in a pinch.
posted by verbyournouns at 11:34 AM on August 6, 2010


sorry, you CAN set it to show up as your number
posted by a womble is an active kind of sloth at 11:34 AM on August 6, 2010


Hey wow. That looks perfect. I will give it a try.
posted by mai at 11:34 AM on August 6, 2010


AIM also allows this.
posted by fire&wings at 11:37 AM on August 6, 2010


Skype does it too.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 11:37 AM on August 6, 2010


Quick follow-up to nomadicink - it says friends may incur data charges when replying. My friends, luddites that we are, don't have data plans. Will this still work?
posted by mai at 11:37 AM on August 6, 2010


You can do it in gchat, too (at the one within gmail, not sure about standalone Google Talk).
posted by inigo2 at 11:37 AM on August 6, 2010


You can also send text messages via GChat (the chat client built into GMail... in case anyone doesn't know) by sending a message to +1xxxxxxxxxx, where the x's are your friend's phone number.
posted by telegraph at 11:37 AM on August 6, 2010 [3 favorites]


Okay thanks for all the quick replies. It seems like since I already use gchat I may try that.
posted by mai at 11:39 AM on August 6, 2010


it says friends may incur data charges when replying. My friends, luddites that we are, don't have data plans

I don't think it's data plans that matter, but TEXT plans. If they have unlimited texts it shouldn't be a problem. If they have set number of texts and they're texting you after going over that limit, then I think they pay whatever they plan says they should pay.
posted by nomadicink at 11:40 AM on August 6, 2010


You can just email to the phone number and when they reply it will go to your email.
Here's a list of the common ways to do this:

Sprint phonenumber@messaging.sprintpcs.com
Verizon phonenumber@vtext.com
T-Mobile phonenumber@tmomail.net
AT&T phonenumber@txt.att.net

You could also join the absolutely wonderful world of Google Voice and then you'll have that all online
posted by Raichle at 11:55 AM on August 6, 2010 [5 favorites]


I just tried Raichle's method with a Verizon number and it worked as promised -- man, that's handy to text and get texts in your email.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 12:15 PM on August 6, 2010


Thanks. I am up on the gchat texting now.
posted by mai at 12:16 PM on August 6, 2010


2nding Google Voice - You can send and receive texts without a physical phone. Responses can be sent to your e-mail address and you can simply reply to the e-mail and GV will send it as an SMS.
posted by wongcorgi at 12:18 PM on August 6, 2010


A caution on Google Voice - it can only identify your GV phone number as the sender. Your name will not display.
posted by yclipse at 1:12 PM on August 6, 2010


Does anyone know if the gchat SMS options are available outside of the US? It looks like Yahoo messenger is, which is awesomesauceome.
posted by beepbeepboopboop at 1:26 PM on August 6, 2010


Inspired by this thread, I'm just trying to work out how to get Gmail chat to send an SMS. Not getting very far, though. Is this because I'm not in the US just now? A friend who is there is also trying to find it and send a text message to me (in Turkey), so far unsuccessfully. Anything we need to know?
posted by lapsangsouchong at 2:14 PM on August 6, 2010




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