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7 gotta-know iOS and Android text-messaging tricks

Ben Patterson | Feb. 18, 2015
The standard Android and iOS messaging apps--you know, the app you use for trading all those text messages, photos and videos--can do much more than you might think. Not only can you forward any text messages you receive, you can also (depending on whether you're using an iPhone or Android phone) find out when a given message was sent or received, shush an annoying group thread, or "lock" a message that's particularly important. You can even swap in a whole new messaging app if you're not satisfied with the "stock" one.

The only thing you can't do with the files in the Attachments section is select them all at once — or batch-delete them (or delete them at all, actually). An annoying omission, no question.

Swap in an all-new messaging app (Android)

Not satisfied with the "stock" Android texting app? If you've got an Android phone, you can take your pick from dozens of interesting first- and third-party messaging apps, from Google's Hangouts and flashy new Messenger app to Facebook Messenger, the wildly popular WhatsApp, Viber, Chomp (which lets you schedule text messages for later sending), and many more.

The first step: download and install a new messaging app from the Google Play Store. Once that's done, tap Settings, More (under the Wireless & Networks heading), Default SMS app, then select a new app from the list.

All set? Now you can use the app you just picked for all your messaging needs, including garden-variety SMS and picture messages.

And in case you're wondering, yes — your new messaging app will (or should, anyway) import all your old message threads.


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