How To Send Text Messages from Hotmail, Yahoo Mail Or Gmail?
Most people think that in order for them to communicate electronically from their PC to a cell phone the phone has to have the Internet and they need to subscribe to a data plan. One workaround for older phones that do not have Internet functionality or phones in which the person receiving the communication do not subscribe to a data plan is through the usage of traditional text messages. This article focuses on using your email account to send text messages. Now I will tell all Outlook, Outlook Express, Windows Mail, Windows Live Mail, Eudora, Thunderbird and Mac Mail junkies upfront I am not talking about using traditional POP/IMAP accounts to send text messages, though that would be cool.
What I will focus on is sending text (SMS) messages to a cell phone from an email account that is checked online in the web browser. The first method involves using Gmail. I felt that it was important to address the ins and outs of using Gmail to send and receive text messages because more than a few steps are required to do so.
Sending a text message using Google
The first thing you need to do is to click on the down arrow next to the word Chat on the left hand side of the screen from within your Gmail account. Left click on Chat Settings. Left click on Labs, which is to the right of Web Clips but to the left of Offline. Enable SMS in Chat gadget, scroll down two more steps and enable Text Messaging (SMS) in Chat. Go down to the bottom of the screen and click on Save Changes. If you enable one gadget but not the other the chat feature will not work.
You should notice a new link on the left hand side of the screen that says Send SMS. Enter in the phone number you want to send a text message to and hit Enter. Fill in the details for the person you are going to send the text message to. Save your changes, you will notice that on the lower right hand side of the screen you get a pop up that shows your session with this cell phone user. Gmail uses quotas for their text messaging service. You can send up to 50 messages; if someone replies to your message you get another 5 messages that you can send out, but you can never get back to 50 messages at one time.
You can also send emoticons if you wish. They get two messages, one telling them that you sent them a message and allowing them to opt out by replying with the word STOP and the actual message itself. You can then carry on the conversation from there.
Sending a text message using the all new Yahoo Mail
Yahoo Mail also allows people to send text messages. The problem with Yahoo Mail is that it features rich content and does not work well on old browsers like IE 6. The good thing about Yahoo Mail’s text messaging feature is that unlike Google it is very straightforward. On Yahoo you simply click on the New button next to the Check Mail button. Choose the Text option, enter your phone number and type in your message and send it. Yahoo simply sends the message without any option to block the conversation. It does however, send a message to the cell phone user telling them that someone from Yahoo is trying to send them a text.
Sending a text message using Yahoo Mail Classic
In the old Yahoo Mail, which does not use Flash, you still get the chat option on the side but you need to actually add the person you want to send the text message to as a mobile contact. If they are a regular contact the service will not work. You then have to log out of your account and go back into it just to see the new contact that you have added. You have to add additional information, such as an email address, to save the contact. This should clarify any confusion as to whether or not people using the old Yahoo Mail service can actually send text messages. If you are using Yahoo Mail Classic do yourself a favor and upgrade to the all new Yahoo Mail. Everything else is the same, in the old Yahoo Mail Classic the chat shows up as a small window just like it does in Gmail and Hotmail. In the all new Yahoo Mail the chat takes up the entire area of the screen where messages (and who sent the message) would normally appear on a new tab.
Sending a text message using Hotmail, which requires the use of Windows Live Messenger
Hotmail offers the ability to send messages but the option is hidden and you cannot search the help files on the Hotmail website to figure this out. The functionality is hidden in Windows Live Messenger, which, like other instant messaging products is both available online and offline from the desktop. First you have to click on Messenger on the left hand side of the screen and add the person you want to send a message to as a contact. Then that person receives a notification that you added them as a friend, and can respond to the invitation. Once that has been done you then click on Messenger again and search for the person you want to send the message to. You then click on More in the lower right hand corner of the session and choose Send Text Message. Enter the phone number and then click on Save.
With Hotmail you can reply with the letter D to deny the communication. Hotmail also informs the recipient that it is a communication from someone using Window Live Messenger. Hotmail’s method sort of reminds of you of what it is like to communicate with someone through Facebook. So now you know how to communicate with people on their cell phone without using a service that requires a data plan, such as Facebook, or a service built on top of SMS, such as Twitter. Most of you will probably still use your tried and true methods but for those that want to get in touch with someone that has a cell phone, and they do not have a cell phone but only has a computer, this is a cool way to communicate with those you would not normally be able to communicate with. When you can get 1,000 text messages for $9.99 on most prepaid cell phones this is an affordable alternative to a data plan that will typically run you $29.99 or more. (Source from Ezine Article)