Let's be honest here, texting through SMS and carriers is very convenient but it's nothing short of a complete rip off. What are they charging these days? A quarter per SMS?! That's why apps like textPlus, that offer free texting through an application, can get so popular. textPlus, which has enjoyed over 3.5 million downloads on the iPhone/iPod touch platform, has decided to jump over to Android and many of us won't have to pay the carriers another cent for SMS charges.

How textPlus works is it sends the recipient (presumably, a non textPlus user) a message that details it's from your username and gives instructions on how to reply back to you. If you're texting another textPlus user, we're sure the experience can get even more seamless. What's even cooler is that textPlus allows for group texting--up to 20 of your friends can respond to one another and everyone can see it (great for planning nights out). Think of it as an e-mail chain but for texts!

Go try it out and let us know what you think.

[via mobilecrunch]

 
There are 22 comments

Anonymous says:

This would be perfect if it allowed for international text messaging! Most everyone has unlimited domestic text messaging plans but carriers still try to get you when you text internationally! I hope they enable international!

Dzikoo says:

Does it works outside US?

Anonymous says:

You're right it, it is a rip off. I know some people "on the inside" and they say it costs the carrier less than 0.5p (about $0.008) when a user sends a text message, almost 100% profit.

Anonymous says:

I've always wondered why people don't just use email when they have a data plan which this will need, it's instant and you dont have to jump through hoops to get the message AND it works internationally to anywhere in the world.
even if you dont have a data plan it costs way less for the data for the email than it does for the text and you can mail more than 20 peple if you want.

HeatherDawn says:

Does it still have the character limit?

Fred says:

Wow, instant messaging... how novel.

drew olanoff says:

Not sure what you mean, you can text those without the app with ease.

iphonemilk says:

Meh... this is not free texting..

call me when it's seemless for a "non textplus" user.

this is just instant messaging for those who are on it, and for those who aren't? ..

meh... lame

frettfreak says:

Yeah.. Kinda wondering what the "instructions" on how to reply will be. Great idea if the recipient can just hit reply and send it back, but not very good if the have to go to a website or something. Then you would have to make sure everyone you send something to has a data plan.. If they do chances are they have an IM client that you can contact them on..

hatch.duffy says:

Tried this and...ehh..I was never able to get a text to send to anyone! Think I'll just be sticking to Google Voice for free SMS

drew olanoff says:

Would like to hear more about your experience Hatch, please feel free to hop into our community here: http://support.GOGII.com

Shamir says:

It sends SMS free, but it doesn't receive them free. Google voice will already do this and it's already installed on my Android phone AND doesn't have adverts in it.

Staying with Google Voice.

UncleMike says:

The benefit of this is lost on me too. As a non-textPlus user, if I were to receive a SMS message that had to include instructions for replying, I would either just delete it, or send the sender a normal SMS telling them to stop sending me this #*$@. Unless it offers significant benefits over standard SMS and is widely available, or is seamless for non-users, I don't see it going too far.

@Casey: why mention non-plan per-message SMS charges? Anyone with even the slightest interest in an app like this is almost certainly on a messaging plan, meaning they don't actually pay these rates. Then again, I have yet to understand the mass appeal of SMS as a primary means of communicating using a phone. More than anything else, I use my phone to... you guessed it... TALK to people. Maybe it's just a generational thing - I've seen you on video and we're CLEARLY not from the same generation :)

drew olanoff says:

We're actually seeing quite the opposite, as far as those not using the app. They're responding...and in droves. Plus, we're always working on making the experience better for both sides.

One of the plus' (sorry ha) of textPlus is the group texting feature. Right now if you send a text to 20 people, and one person replies...you're the only one who sees it. We've changed that.

Anonymous says:

this is use if u really think about most if not all phone carriers offer unlimited text messaging #justsayin

Anonymous says:

i meant to say USELESS

Anonymous says:

theres none

joe says:

1) can emails be sent to textplus from a pc (joe@textplus.com or something?)
2) anyone know if there is a way to get redbox dvd rental free codes sent to textplus?

SarahSL says:

Is there another way I can get a verification code, because it won't send it to my samsung moment and i have texting

niners#AC says:

So bored....................!

chathuragune says:

SMS did not arrive for me. I would stick to:
http://smsfree4all.com/free-text-united-states-of-america.php for direct free SMS. They arrive in 1-2 seconds.

Gary Powell says:

Hey