Voice and Text from one number on an iPhone or a Mac?
February 8, 2014 5:58 PM   Subscribe

I want one phone number to use for talk and text, and I want to be able to send and receive texts on my iPhone or from my Mac without using a browser or a second phone number. Currently, Google Voice does this, but it looks like Google is merging Google Voice into Hangouts this spring, and 3rd party apps will no longer work. GAH! I love being able to send and receive texts for my real number on my Mac (I use GrowlVoice). I'm currently on AT&T for my iPhone, but I'm more than willing to switch to another carrier. What are my options?
posted by 2oh1 to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
This won't give the recipient your phone number, but as an interim solution -- did you know that you can text people using e-mail?

You need to know the recipient's carrier, though:

AT&T: 1234567890@mms.att.net
Verizon: 1234567890@vtext.com
Sprint: 1234567890@messaging.sprintpcs.com
T-Mobile: 1234567890@tmomail.net

I suppose you COULD set your e-mail client to have your return address as your phone's @mms.att.net address, but people might interpret that as some sort of scam.

I don't know if there's some way to get the exact functionality you're looking for, but if Google Voice does it I'm sure there's some other app for the Mac that does.
posted by tckma at 7:21 PM on February 8, 2014

Consider using Messages, linking your Apple ID and telephone number.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:32 PM on February 8, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Can you explain how that would work? I thought using iMessage meant I could only interact with other iMessage users (people using iPhones, iPads and Macs). If I link my Apple ID and telephone number, can I use iMessage (and Messages on OSX) to send and receive texts with anyone who can receive texts?
posted by 2oh1 at 7:38 PM on February 8, 2014

The first doc explains how it interacts with other IM services. I can't answer your first question, though the docs should explain how it works.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:46 PM on February 8, 2014

Also, this doc suggests that iMessages supports SMS and MMS services on iPhone. Not clear if that includes the OS X client.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:52 PM on February 8, 2014

How do I get imessage to send SMS texts to non iphone users? might be useful to read about sending SMS texts from Messages (OS X client).
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:56 PM on February 8, 2014

I don't know much about this stuff, just what I find with web searches. But I regularly exchange texts with friends and family who use Android and Blackberry phones, as well as iPhones. So I imagine this stuff is handled behind the scenes.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:46 PM on February 8, 2014

The messages app on Mac OS cannot send SMS messages. It can use iMessage to talk to other iMessage accounts or connect to your Gtalk/Jabber/AOL/Yahoo instant messages.

I'm not aware of a way aside from the Google Voice (or Skype) method you're using now to do this. The people I communicate with use mostly IOS devices and we do everything in iMessage. The occasional SMS from a non IOS contact needs to be read on my phone.

(What is sad is that ten years ago I had an app for my PowerBook that let me use my Sony Ericsson phone to send SMS and take phone calls via bluetooth. It was pretty awesome since when the phone rang or I got a message, I'd get a notification on the PowerBook where I could pick up the call or send it to voicemail. For texts, I could just read and reply to the text from the PowerBook. It used bluetooth standards to have the phone send the data to the Mac. Unfortunately the app developer could not get it to work in iOS because the way Apple implemented bluetooth. I was really hoping that Mac OS X and iOS would support this out of the box by now)
posted by birdherder at 10:08 PM on February 8, 2014

This is possible if you want to use Android, or jailbreak your iPhone. I don't think there is a solution for standard iPhones.
posted by blue_beetle at 3:55 AM on February 9, 2014

Google Voice lets you send and receive texts without a second phone number? Really? Don't you need a number for your cell phone, and another for Google Voice?

Assuming it is the latter, look for integrated VoIP offerings that include an iOS app, a Mac apps, and the backend service. Or, you can get a VoIP service that allows sending and receiving of SMS messages and couple it with SIP clients on your phone and computer that support SIP messaging. The voice calls themselves can just be automatically forwarded to your mobile number if you don't want to mess with the actual VoIP for voice calls (I've set things up to use VoIP when I am on WiFi, or forward to my phone when I'm not.

I use Anveo for VoIP and Groundwire for the SIP client on my phone. Groundwire is more reliable than some of the other SIP clients I've tried, but a little clunkier too. I wouldn't necessarily recommend Anveo. It is reasonably priced and powerful, but for this use, another service like Voip.ms, or Callcentric, might be easier to configure and a more amenable pricing mode.
posted by Good Brain at 4:37 PM on February 9, 2014

Response by poster: "Google Voice lets you send and receive texts without a second phone number? Really? Don't you need a number for your cell phone, and another for Google Voice?"

Technically, you need a 2nd phone number, at least on AT&T (not sure about Sprint, as they have a weird relationship with GV), but I meant that I can use that one Google Voice number for everything. I can give that one number to someone and they can call me, or text me. And I can receive their calls and texts on my iPhone or my Mac.
posted by 2oh1 at 1:13 PM on February 11, 2014

« Older How to buy a ton of small cylinders (models of...   |   Topological Data Analysis, I think it's called? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.