06Last month, Google started rolling out “Messages for Web” support for all Android users.

While Apple iPhone owners have long been able to use iMessages on Mac, Android users are only now getting a similar functionality. Basically, the new tool allows to send text messages from any web browser, so you don’t have to keep reaching for your phone.

Over the years, Google launched a number of messaging apps, but none proved too popular. With Android Messages, which is the default texting app on select Android smartphones, Google is betting on Rich Communication Services and its newly-announced Chat platform to compete with Apple’s iMessages platform.

Haven’t had the chance to try out the new option yet? Follow the simple tutorial below to get started.

How do you send an Android text message from your desktop?

First of all, if you want to text from your browser you’re going to need to download the Android Messages app on your phone. Before you do that though, make sure you check your device, as some handsets come with the app pre-installed.

Open the app on your phone and set it as your default SMS app.

Next, head over to your desktop computer and access the following address in a browser: https://messages.android.com. You’ll be greeted with a screen that has a QR code. From here follow these steps:

  1. Pick up your phone with Android Messages loaded
  2. Tap the three-dot menu located in the top right and select “Messages for web”.
  3. Tap Scan QR Code
  4. Scan the code with your phone.

If you’re familiar with WhatsApp Web, the authentication process is very similar.

Now you should be able to see a screen that lets you start new texts with anyone in your phone’s address book. You can send text messages, as well as pictures, emoji or stickers.

Google says that conversation threads, contacts and other settings will be encrypted and cached on your browser. However, note that this doesn’t mean your actual text conversation will be encrypted.

Also, to make sure you don’t have to repeat the QR code scanning part, you can use the “Remember this computer” option. You can find it in the Settings menu in the web version of Android Messages.

Android Messages for Web works in multiple browsers including:

  • Chrome
  • Firefox
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Safari

Another thing to keep in mind. Like WhatsApp Web, Android Messages for Web can’t work independently of your phone. So make sure to charge your handset if you plan on using the desktop messaging service.

Last but not least, Android Messages for Web has a dark mode. You can enable it from Settings in your browser. Just find the “Enable dark theme” option.

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