How to Send Group Texts From Android Devices to Shut Up iPhone Users

group texts

The coveted group text. It’s something that iPhone users have been given access to for years. These iPhone followers find it quite easy to tease Android, since the platform has failed to come up with a standardized way of sending group texts. Some might consider this a good thing, since you get to customize your phone and choose how you want to group text, but the open nature of Android makes the messaging game a bit complex.

Let’s say you just bought a new Android phone, and now you want to send a mass text out to all of your friends for an upcoming party. You realize that when iPhone users create a mass text, you are included; but when you respond, the message only goes to the original recipient. It’s even tough to send out a group text without having to deal with stray texts coming in, and people not knowing who is who.

Let’s take a look at how to send group texts from Android devices to help you nurture, not hinder, your mobile relationships.

 

Method 1: Sending with Groups of Contacts

This is by no means the best way to send out group texts, because it doesn’t always allow you to interact with your friends or family in a communal way, but it does give you a quick way to send out a blast to your existing contacts.

  1. Make sure your messaging settings are enabled for group/MMS texts. In order for your text to be sent as one group message with one thread of replies, it first has to be converted to MMS. This does use data. The alternative is to send texts to multiple people individually, which most likely will be counted as text messaging by your carrier.

    You can ensure that everything is set up the way you like it by opening your phone’s stock texting app and selecting Settings. Depending on your Android, you may also have to tap on Message Settings or possibly SMS or MMS. Enable (or disable if you to send your group messages individually, so everyone doesn’t see everything) MMS and/or Thread Group Conversations. Also enable data in Settings>Data Usage (or Mobile Data) if you are opting to use MMS.

  2. Create a default group to send your messages to. This is handy if you regularly send messages to your family or a designated group of friends. Go to your homescreen and click on the Contacts button.

    contacts group

  3. Click on the Groups tab at the top of the screen. All Android phones differ here. You might have to click on an Add Groups button or click on the Menu button to actually find the Groups option.

    groups contacts

  4. Designate a group name of your choice and remember it so you can type it into the message field later. Click on the Save button to finish this process.

    group name

  5. In order to add people to your group you can click on the group you just created and select Add Contact. Once again, some Android phones have different commands, but the buttons should be somewhat similar. This brings you to a list of your contacts. Select all of the contacts you want and add them to the group.

    If you are needing to import contacts from CSV or similar file, try an app like CSV Contact Importer.

    Download: CSV Contacts Importer

  6. Now that you have a group of people created, it’s time to send out your group text. From your home screen, navigate to the Messaging app and open it. Click on the To: or Recipient: field and click on the Contacts icon.

    This should bring up your contacts. Pick the group you just created, and if you want, go select certain people from that group to narrow it down a bit. Click on the Done button and then return to the messaging app to compose your message and send it out to your groups.

    send message

For Later:

If you should decide in the future that you want to add an additional contact to the group, open that person’s contact information. Choose Edit. Scroll down to find the Groups section. Select the group, and add your contact.

You might also decide that you want to set a limit and delete older group conversations automatically. Group message size can increase almost exponentially, and while one little old text doesn’t seem like much, they can add up. To set that limit, open the messaging app and go to the menu, then Settings.

Under the Storage section, ensure that Delete Old Messages is enabled. Choose either or both Text Message Limit or Multimedia Message Limit, specify the amount you wish to allow, and press Set.

Troubleshooting:

If your phone is like mine, there simply is no Groups option in Contacts. Instead, from the Menu, I have to go into Contact to Display, and work with those groups or add the contacts to the To: field one by one. Or keep reading for more options.

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Method 2: Go SMS Pro

There are a few Android messaging apps that allow you to send group messages to other people. Unfortunately, most of them have a few downsides. The first downside is that many of them don’t solve the problem of joining in with a group chat with a bunch of iPhone users. You’ll receive a handful of separate texts, but they don’t allow you to chat with everyone at once.

For the apps that do allow group chatting with iPhones you often have to convince your iPhone friends to download an app. This is unrealistic, considering they would have to actually download the app and open it whenever they want to send you a text.

The best group messaging app for Android is Go SMS Pro, although some users don’t appreciate the newest upgrade, and a specific complaint is that they have to enable MMS repeatedly. Nonetheless, with just a few simple clicks, you can group message anyone in your contacts, and it includes you in any iPhone chat session.

  1. Navigate to the Google Play Store using the button below. Download Go SMS Pro to your Android phone and open the app when it’s done downloading. You can also close out the download page and open the app from your homescreen if you would like.

    Download: GO SMS Pro

  2. Click the Menu button; then click the Settings button.

  3. Once in the Settings area, locate an option called General. Click this button.

    general setting

  4. Next, find the option called Group Messaging under the MMS section. Check this option off to enable the ability to chat with everyone at once. Basically, if a group of iPhone users creates a group text, and they include you, instead of delivering all the messages separately to you, it pushes all of the messages to a thread for you to join the entire conversation.

    group messaging

Troubleshooting Lag, & Performance Issues:

Go SMS Pro can have lag when generating the threads for your group texts, or sending the messages themselves. If needed, close and restart the app. Some users have found that this app conflicts with other apps, like AdFree. If you like GO SMS Pro better than the conflicting app, consider uninstalling the other app.

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Method 3: GroupMe

This is a pretty self-explanatory app, that takes a quick setup and then you can start sending group texts to whoever you want. The app can switch to SMS if you have a weak connection.

  1. Simply download the GroupMe app below.

    Download: GroupMe

  2. Sign into the account by typing in your phone number and password. You can also create an account from the app.

    make account

  3. Click on the Start New Group button. The app then asks you to name the group or create a topic. Or you can text the following command: #new [insert topic] to GROUP (47687). This creates a unique phone number for your group.

    start group

  4. Click on the Start button. Click on the Add Member button to start including people on your list. Or text: #add [insert name] [insert number] to your group number created in the previous step.

     

  5. The last step is to go to the messaging portion and select your recently created group. This sends messages to all of the people you add. Congrats!

Troubleshooting When You Have Recently Switched from iPhone to Android:

If you aren’t receiving replies from other iPhone users, ask them to delete and add you again as a contact. This should cause their phone to stop trying to use the iMessage protocol to contact your phone. You will also need to deregister iMessage, and you can using this link.

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Method 4: Handcent

In addition to its group texting, one of the nice things about Handcent is how customizable it is, and unlike the others, many users like the results of the most recent update.

  1. Install Handcent. You can also use the plugin on Google Play in addition to the app. It is wholly dedicated to this purpose, but you can get the same result with the app itself.

    Download: Handcent Next SMS

    Download: Handcent Plugin

  2. Launch the app. You will want to ensure that Handcent is the default MMS and SMS.

    default handcent

  3. Go to the Inbox drop down menu and select More. If you are just using the plugin, go to Handcent Services, then Group SMS and activate. You are now done if you have the plug-in app.

    inbox more

  4. Now go to Settings and ensure that Send as split threads is disabled for one thread, or enabled for multiple.

  5. To use MMS, also visit Application Settings and enable Thread Group Conversation.

    thread convo

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Conclusion


Let us know in the comments section below if you have any questions about how to send group texts from Android devices. Sending group texts is one of the primary reasons iPhone users can bash Android users. For some reason, Android still doesn’t really have a default way of mass texting other people, which makes it difficult to be included in group texts between a bunch of iPhone users.

Fortunately, there are plenty of workarounds for you to play with. Try grouping your contacts before sending out a group text to make it a little easier for yourself, or even try to download an app to get in on the action with iPhone users. You might even check out other messaging apps for better texting.

If you have any questions about these methods, please feel free to express your concerns below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Featured Image Credit

 





Comments (104)

  1. pat on

    Where do I find what I downloaded from a text message from an iphone to my android?

  2. Andrew Hall on

    If I use Group Me or SMS pro will all my iphone users need to install the app as well? Thanks

      • Tina Trevellin on

        What about Blackberry users? I tried the group method above on my Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge and it didn’t work. I see the group with all the recipients, and they all saw my message but they could not see the other people in the group, and when they replied it only came to me. I’m trying to group text my family and we have Android, iPhone and Blackberry phones. Blackberry is not compatible with GroupMe or even WhatsApp so I’m desperately looking for a solution, we currently use BBM and I hate it, too much spam.

  3. eric on

    With Go sms pro when I send a group text and I get replies…will everyone in he group text see the replies from everyone?

  4. Matt on

    When I send group texts to everyone I know (from my DROID MAXX to a group entirely comprised of iPhone users) I do not receive any messages back whatsoever. They can carry on an entire conversation and I will no longer be in it. How is this fixed?

  5. Reg on

    I have not had SMS/MMS problems with iPhone users since Android 4.0. Use either the Google Hangouts app or the new Google Messenger app for MMS. They are both available in the Google Play Store.

    The third party apps like GoSMS are not necessary anymore.

    • Carol on

      Will Google messenger allow me to send 100 texts but when people respond to only reply individually… And be able to change the setting to a group text where i would want everyone to respond in one place

      • Judy on

        Hi Carol,
        Yes. You’ll need to change your settings to get replies individually. Go to Messenger – Advanced settings – Click on Group Messaging – Select “Send individual SMS messages to all recipients. Only you will get any replies” Hope this helps and thanks for commenting. =-)

        • Baba on

          Hi Carol:

          My situation is a bit different. I have an android smart phone. At this moment, all that I need is to send a text message to one person, and the same text message to be sent at the same time to a second party as an email. At this time, the message is to be sent to just two parties (one party receives it as a text message, and the second party receives it as an email).

          Purpose: for your worship house, I need to send a text message one member, but I need to copy the treasurer the same message as an email.

          Please advise
          M-USA

          • Anon on

            You could probably do it with Tasker, but you’d basically have to build the app yourself. One text input field and a send button that initiates two actions: one sending the text from the input field to a specific number, the second sending the text from the input field as the body of an email to a specific address.

            I’d add some extra functions too: write the text field to a file every N seconds, as a backup and to be loaded automatically on scene open; this file could be cleared on successful sending. A button/automatic saving to a local text file as well. Autofill the email subject line, say “Automatic copy of txt to to treasurer, “.

            Etc etc. Depending on your skill level and how polished the end result needs to be it could take from a few hours to a few days (even months) to create.

    • Steve on

      Yeah, but Go SMS is a great app and it works if you enable group messaging. You don’t HAVE to use it, but it works if you WANT to use it.

  6. Seriously on

    Sending group messages has always been enabled on my android phones. What’s up with this article. Just compose a new message click the contacts button and click more than one contact. Or you can manually enter them or you can simply reply to a message that sent to you and a group of people. 100% easy, always has been.

    • eric on

      You can send a group text but you receive each reply individually And you can’t have a group discussion..it’s only one on one

      • Yes Seriously on

        **swoosh** sound of the point going over Seriously’s head..

        Just because it works for YOU doesn’t meant that the issue in this article doesn’t exist.. SERIOUSLY?? you don’t KNOW that???

        • HateToBeYou on

          Group messaging has been available for Android for years. Just because you don’t know how to do it doesn’t mean it’s an issue… You don’t KNOW that???..

  7. nicole on

    The Go SMS Pro app does not work with my Virgin Mobile phone. Are certain carriers unable to support group text???

    • Dani on

      Nicole,

      I don’t have a phone on Virgin mobile, so I can’t test it out myself, but after a little research here are a few potential solutions:

      go to settings. go to more settings. go to mobile networks. click on network mode. select cdma. it will reboot your phone. and it should allow you to send messages. Unfortunately cdma mode only works through 3g, so you have to sacrifice with this method.

      Another possible solution: Settings>General>MMS Size Limit. Change the limit size to 1M if it’s not already there. Reboot the app and see if it works.

      If these don’t work, look through the settings and try to find some MMS settings that might be causing the problem. Try writing up a bug report to Go SMS Pro to see if they can help you out.

  8. Sandra on

    Many android phones have a limit on the number of people you can text simultaneously. My current Samsung Note 2 has a limit of 10; a Sony Experia Z3 I’m considering buying has a limit of 50. The explanation here about how to create a Group for your contacts to enable group texting (sometimes called mass texting or multi texting) doen’t explain that many android phones have an inbuilt limitation on the number of people you can multitext in the software.
    I have looked at Go SMS Pro; but users Feedback comments are scathing about the most recent upgrade.
    I have also considered Handcent; but similarly, users are incredibly dissatisfied with the most recent update.
    Both sites have comments about their most recent App updates that would make it impossible for me to use their App for my multitexts.
    (I arrange wildlife rescues and need to text 100 people simultaneously. My current Samsung phone has a limit of 10 people per multitext; so I have to send the text 10 times; which is time consuming and frustrating.0
    I don’t need to group chat; in fact it would be counter-productive. I haven’t looked into GroupMe yet; but will.
    Any suggestions in the meantime?
    Thanks

  9. buttahz on

    I am using 8sms as my texting app. I have no problems initially receiving group MMS msgs from iPhones. But I delete conversations on a daily basis. Once I delete the group MMS conversation I don’t get any new replies from any other iPhone recipients, if there are any. Furthermore, if I create a new group MMS with the same recipients, say a week later, I still don’t get replies from iPhones. It’s not until all group participants delete that group MMS thread, then I get iPhone replies. It’s frustrating. I guess the moral of THIS story is: don’t delete the group MMS threads! Lol

  10. Tom on

    With go sms pro on a galaxy s3 andriod 4.4.2 , I cannot get group responses to my messages. When I send to iPhones it always come to them as individual text and same in return. I only get message from the original poster. Would really like to shut up my iPhone freinds but have never been able to make this work…

  11. Thomas on

    If i was involved in an existing imessage group and am now using an android, how to i get back into that existing group message?

  12. Lena on

    Hey! Thanks for the breakdown. I have a question about GroupMe – I use GroupMe, but the main problem that my friends and I experience is that we can’t send pics/videos through it. so if I go into the thread in GroupMe and try to send a picture, they don’t receive it. If one of them goes into the group thread and then try to send a picture, they claim it never sends. Is this a typical problem with GroupMe, or could it be something else (perhaps my settings? I tried to go through to see if I needed to enable anything but found nothing)
    Thanks!
    Lena

  13. Hiren on

    While creating a group as explained in your article, all the nos listed in the particular contact i.e mobile no, office landline no, residence landline no etc get added in the group. Is it possible to select specific numbers say only mobile no frm the multiple numbers. Also incase the contact has 2 mobile nos can we select both or choose any 1 form the 2.

  14. JayP on

    Which app should I use to send out group texts but without everyone seeing the replies, only myself? I get complaints about people receiving too many texts from unknown numbers.

  15. K.W. on

    Is there a way to additional participants to an existing group text? I have looked and find nothing. I’m using the Droid Turbo Maxx.

  16. Kris on

    I installed Go SMS pro on my Moto X (verizon) and am still unable to receive some replies back when I group txt. Some groups work fine – others not at all. Sending the txt seems to be working – its the reply that I don’t always get.

    • Sam on

      Kris, when I tried it always worked. Go SMS pro released an update yesterday and this may have caused this issue. I can see a lot of negative ratings for this app. I am sure they’d fix this in the next release. However I’d ask you to delete the app and re-install it again. Sometimes this may fix the issue. Let me know if this works or not.

  17. nancy on

    Is it true -if you switched to an android from iPhone. Your friends recognize your number as an iPhone user and responds with a iPhone messaget that you don’t get. I went to iTunes and dissociated my number with apple. I hear ithe takes awhile before your number is forgotten as an iPhone then your friends I phones will see you as an android and send correctmy formatted messages

    • Sam on

      Hi Nancy,
      This was the case few months back. It drew a lot of press news mentioning that Apple intentionally locks down the users to their iMessage so that competing platforms like Android users suffer. However the good news is Apple responded and provided a way around for this. If you still use your iPhone you can go to Settings > Messages > iMessage > OFF.
      If you have already switched to Android you can use this page from Apple website to deregister yourself. Hope this helps.

  18. Sky on

    So android still hasn’t figured out a solution to this? I really don’t want to have all my friends download a app. The two things that bother me is when I “Reply to all” then my friends with iphones get my text individually. And the second thing I hate is how I get each group text from my friends separately so it all isn’t under one thread like how it should be. Unless there’s something I don’t know about. I have a Sony Z3, if anyone knows anything, I would be so thankful.

  19. Sky on

    So android really hasn’t figured out a solution to this? The two things that bother me is when I “Reply to all” then my friends with iphones get my text individually. And the second thing I hate is how I get each group text from my friends separately so it all isn’t under one thread like how it should be. Unless there’s something I don’t know about, someone please help us out.

  20. feliro on

    I wish I had this problem. I recently sent a group text thinking it would send to all recipients without them all seeing each other. Wrong. I have friends who hate each other now having access to each other’s info and my other friends see those two argue with each other in the group. Wish I knew how to delete the group conversation 🙁

    • Judy on

      Hi Feliro,
      How unfortunate to hear about how some of your friends hate each other. Hopefully one day they can work it out. Were you using an app for group messaging?

  21. Robert Emma on

    what is the best phone SMS texting app I can use for my small business messages on my Android 4.4
    thanks

  22. Mariel on

    Hi there friends, nice article and good arguments commented here, I am truly enjoying by these.

    • Judy on

      Hi Mariel,
      Thank you for your kind words and don´t forget to share your positive experience in social media. Keep coming back for more useful tips! =-)

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  26. Richard the Lyon on

    I have a Samsung note 3 Version 5.0 Android
    I have about 1000 people I text to .
    I have put them in a group and only want to announce upcoming events, etc by a mass text message that will go out to at least 250 at a time. I DO NOT NEED GROUP RESPONSE at all. I would prefer they respond back one at a time.
    I would also like to find an app that will put their first name in so they think it is not a mass text being sent.
    I have tried many and all real glitchy and bad.

    Any suggestions?

    • Judy on

      Hi Richard,
      I am not familiar with a messaging app that does exactly that, but if I come across one I will definitely let you know. =-)

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  34. Paul Gutting on

    I was using Textra, but I have a contacts issue. I used a contacts optimizer and it messed up my groups so much that I could not get textra to send to a group – there would be 3-4 groups with the same name with partial group lists. I tried go sms pro and when I send a text out to the group, something is preventing the text from going out. I am a youth minister and have just had a very uncomfortable meeting with volunteers because I have been incommunicado. I use 2 google accounts on my computer and have found it difficult keeping the contacts on one separate from the other and I am not sure which pulls from my phone. Can you help?

    • Judy on

      Hi Paul,
      Have you checked to see how your have your messaging app set up in settings? Maybe you can see what contact list it is using. =-) Hope this helps.

  35. stephanie on

    Does Group SMS allow you to import a contact list from a CSV file (or the like) ? Does each person receiving the group text have to be invited and subscribe?

  36. David on

    I send out a weekly text message to 70 plus men. Some with android and some with iphones and of course various networks. The text is sent from a Galaxy S6 on Verizon network. I recently got the new phone in the past month. Prior to this I was using a Galaxy S3 and having no issues other than having to forward or resend the same text message out 4 times from the stock texting program. Since I have begun using the new phone I am still limited to sending the message to 20 people at once, but now the entire text is not being received by everyone. Some receive the entire message but some receive only a cut off version. Maybe some are receiving the message as an mms and some as an sms? So two questions would be how do I get the entire text message to go through to all recipients and a plus would be if I could send only one text message to everyone in my men’s group text. Thank you

    • Judy on

      Hi David,
      On your new phone. are you using a certain app for group messaging or are you sending them directly from your phone? =-)

      • David on

        It is the messaging that comes with the phone. I have tried to download some other messaging apps, but I didn’t care for them much so I deleted them.

      • David on

        I have the texting that came with the Samsung. I guess you would call it the stock texting program? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

        • Judy on

          Hi David,
          If you were using an S3 before with no issues and with the S6 you are having them. There could be some incompatibility issues since I am guessing that the S6 has a more recent Android version than the S3. As you surely know that upgrades don´t always bring relief and have a tendency to also cause more issues. Have you considered using a texting app instead of the one that comes with the phone? =-)

          • David on

            I have tried a few texting apps, but they don’t seem to be as user friendly as the one that comes with the phone. I would welcome any recommendations. One that would allow me to text up to a 100 people at once would be great.

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  40. Charles on

    On my Android version there is no “Group” selection in the contacts menu. It simply shows 4 options: Dial, Call logs, Contacts, and Favorites.
    Is there any way other than downloading a 3rd party app to enable group messaging?

  41. Josh on

    On my galaxy S4, whenever I receive a group text message from an iPhone, it shows up as an MMS. I can’t figure out how to reply to everyone in that group. It only gets sent to the sender. Is there a way to see everyone that the message was sent to and reply to everyone as well?

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  46. Kathy on

    I would like to send a single text to a group and receive replies individually so my recipients phones aren’t alerting them to every response. Can I do this with android?
    ITunes has an app called groups that does this. Also you can create and schedule future texts.
    Is there a similar app for Android devices?

    • Judy on

      In some 3rd party apps like Go SMS and Chomp you can go into settings and turn off group messaging. You can still choose multiple recipients but texts are actually sent individually. Chomp fixed the issue for me. You may want to test it out to be sure it works like you want, though.

  47. Elizabeth Stoud on

    It is now 2017 and I am still having the issue with group texting with iphones. Any new updates?

    • Trevor on

      Which device do you have and what exactly is the problem? Are you using the stock messaging app or one you downloaded?

      My Samsung Galaxy S7 does well with group messages, so does my Nexus 5X using GoSMS Pro. You might want to look at your settings to see if there is a group messaging function setting that could be toggled. There is one in GoSMS Pro, but it may or may not fix your problem depending on the problem you are having.

  48. walt on

    2017 and I still can’t group text between mixed android/ios users. Pathetic really.

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