How to do Group Messaging on Android or iPhone

A Step by Step Pictorial for Cellular & Web Group Text Messaging

A lot of people still prefer text messages as the best way to keep in touch with others. Well, why there is no reason to not use messaging as they are quick and reliable. You can be almost sure that the message will reach the recipient. Even if their phone is switched off or out of coverage area, your message will be sent to them as soon as they get back the signal.

Normally what we do is, send a message to a particular individual, but at sometimes it is more convenient to send the message to a group, because that reduces the effort and saves a lot of time that will be wasted by send the same message to everyone individually.  Just take, for example, if you are planning to throw a dinner party at your house and you want to invite all your friends there, you can just send a group message to all those people at once or suppose you just came back from a movie and you want to give your opinion on that movie to all your friends about it, all you need to do is, just send them a group message.

Let’s See How we can do Group Messaging on iPhone

As the great Steve Jobs said the iPhone is a very simple device to handle, so is true with the sending group messages on the iPhone is pretty much easy and straight forward.

You can start first messaging group just by following the simple steps below.

Step 1. Open Message application through app drawer and then tap on Compose New Message Icon.

Compose-New-Message-Icon-in-iOS-8-Message-App

Step 2. Now click on the ios7_group_msg_plus button to choose recipients from your contact list of just type the phone numbers or the email-id or Names of the people to whom you want this message to be sent, separated by a comma after each.

Add recipients group messaging on Iphone

Step 3. Now, you can type the message that you want to send, in the Text Message field and just tap on Send.

That’s all you need to do and the group message will be sent to all the recipients! But one thing I would prefer before using the group messages is the SMS plan, it will be a good idea to choose a suiting one otherwise you may end up increase $$ in your bill.

send-a-group-sms-on-iPhone

Now, when someone will reply to this message, you will not get any individual message, but the reply will be shown in this thread.

Apple also provides a great way to do create and manage your groups for this you will not even have to touch your iPhone tiny keyboard and screen (Not the iPhone 6 Plus, it has a quite big screen), you can do it from your computer it is the most efficient way to manage your Groups is to use icloud service.

Let’s look at the steps you need to follow to use this feature over iCloud.

Step 1. You will need to log on onto www.icloud.com with the help of your Apple ID and Password.

Step_1_iCloud_thumb

Step 2. Now just click on the Contacts icon, then click the + icon which will be at the bottom.

Step_2_iCloud_contact_group_thumb

Step 3. Now, a menu will pop up and from there, select New Group.

Step_2b_iCloud_contact_new_group

Step 4. Give a name for this new group and then tap outside this box and the name will be saved!

Step 5. Now you need to enter contacts in this new group and for that, click on All Contacts groups and search for the person whom you wish to add or use the search bar to do this.

Step 6. Now, drag their name over the new group and just drop it over there and this contact will be added to the group instantly.

Step_4_Add_contacts_togroup_thumb

Step 6. You can add more contacts by repeating the above step. You can add names to more than 1 group and yes, you can make as many groups as you want.

Step 7.  Now launch the contact app on the iphone and when you tap on groups, you will find the new group over there.

Step_7

I think that’s not hard enough at all, just click click click and it’s done, so start your group messaging now and invite everyone to read this article.

Now, Let’s See How we can do Group Messaging on Android Mobile

Android is the most used mobile OS in the world with record share of 84.6 percent of the whole smartphone market in the world, because it’s even easier to do Group Messaging over the Android Smartphones, even with the native Messaging application. Just look at the steps below and get going instantly.

Step 1. You’ll start by making a default group to send messages.  Just go to the home screen and then tap on Contacts icon.Android Contact icon on Home Screen

 

Step 2. Now at the top of the screen, click on the Groups icon. Different android versions may look different here. You may have to tap on the Add Groups icon or tap on the Menu button to locate the Groups option.

groups

Here you will notice that Android already has some predefined Groups like Co-Worker, Family and Friends, but they have 0 contacts with them, so if you want, you can just add contacts to them and start using it, if you want to create a new group continue with below steps.

Step 3. Here, type a group name and even remember this name for later use and then, tap on the Save button on the top and it’s done!

group-name

Step 4. Now, to add contacts to this group, you may tap on the group that you created and over there, you can select the Add Contact option.

Add Contacts to Group Android

Step 5. You will get a list of your contacts, and then you can choose the all the people that you wish to add by ticking the checkboxes and you are ready, click Done button.

select-contacts

Step 5. Your group has been created now and now you can send group messages, to do so, follow the below steps.

Step 6. Go to home screen and tap on the Message app, Tap on the add recipient icon and select the Groups tab which will show all your groups. Just select the group(s) to send the message to. Now, tap on Done icon and now you can start writing the message and then you can send the message to that group.

send-group-message

 

Even though you can send group messages to unlimited people by using the steps above, I would recommend that don’t send more than 100 messages a day because that is the limit per day for using your message pack, after that you will be charged at your regular rates and that may wipe your balance.

We have seen the uses of native message applications of the Android and iPhone, but there are huge list of third party messaging applications on Play Store and App Store to make your work even easier. Some of the most commonly used and efficient apps are.

1. BBM

Play Store | App Store

blackberry message icon

BBM is now not just for Blackberry phone users. Now, you can make use of this app to send group messages from both your Android handset and your iPhone. This app lets you send group messages, invite your contacts for chat or share info with multiple users at once.

Some Pros of this application are:

  1. Threaded text messaging
  2. Group chat – Web and Cellular
  3. Custom avatars
  4. Set status
  5. Emoticons/Smileys
  6. Take a picture of the bar code of any of your friend and instantly add them to BBM
  7. Timed Messages: Set how long contacts have access to messages and pictures shared in a chat before it disappears from the screen.
  8. The ability to backup contacts list locally and remotely

 

Some Cons of BBM application are:

  1. Voice Notes and pictures fail at times and if they are sent then it is on a very slow transfer rate
  2. Pictures should be saved to your Device Memory or Media card first before viewing
  3. Status updates is limited to two lines.

 

2. Google+ Hangouts

Play Store | App Store

images

With this app, you can send messages, emojis, and map locations to friends at once. This app also enables you to make a phone call and turn it to live video call with multiple people, about up to 10 people.

Some Pros of this application are:

  1. Cross-Platform Messaging App
  2. Synced Conversations

Some Cons of Hangout application are:

  1. Google+ Account is required
  2. No Read receipts
  3. Inability to set the status

3. WeChat

Play Store | App Store

download (1)

WeChat is another great app that enables you to send group messages both text and voice messages and with this app, you can even find new friends nearby!

Some Pros of this application are:

  1. Flawless voice messaging
  2. Audio messages/ Video and voice calls
  3. Live chat option makes conversations come alive with multiple people voice chatting together.
  4. Facilities like Group Chat, emoticons, stickers, sending pictures etc..

Some Cons of WeChat application are:

  1. No status of “Online” or “Offline”. Hard to make out if a user is active or he has deleted the app from his/her phone.
  2. Most Chinese users, so yes, the language barrier.

4. Handcent Next SMS/Talk

Play Store | App Store

handcent sms icon

Handcent Talk for iPhone and Handcent Next SMS for Android is a cross-platforms messaging app, you can use it to send free messages through your Internet connection, including voice notes, videos, pictures and texts.

Some Pros of this application are:

  1. Handcent Anywhere – Text from your PC, Mac, and tablets
  2. Cross Platform – iOS and Android
  3. Talk to you Handcent friends for free

Some Cons of Handcent are:

  1. Can’t use carrier on IOS devices to send messages, the only web version supported.

You can definitely argue that there are even better apps like WhatsApp and Skype, but those are limited to web only version and hence are not shortlisted in the article.

So, When a same message has to be broadcasted to a lot of people quickly, sending group messages is really the best and most efficient way. With so many features in smartphones nowadays and so many group text messaging apps that are available today in the Google Play Store for Android or in the Apple App Store for iPhones, it is really very easy now to have chat with a multiple people at once.

But still if you face any issue in using the group messaging on Android or iPhone, let me know and I’ll definitely sort it out for you, somehow. And also share this article with your friends.

October 16th, 2015

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