Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Back up your SMS and reply from your desk

Here are a two good Android apps that can allow you to be more productive with you phone by backing up your SMS messages and allowing you to receive and respond to SMS messages from your desk.

The first app is SMS Backup+. Once you set up the app with your Gmail account, it will automatically send your SMS messages to your Gmail account and label them "SMS".  You can also set up the app to archive (mark as read) your SMS messages so they won't show up as new messages in your email.  This app will forward both incoming and outgoing SMS and MMS message. The added feature of sending MMS messages is great because now when someone sends you a picture of your sweet niece or nephew, you don't have to worry about saving it to your phone, then emailing the picture to yourself just to get a copy on your computer. Just wait 3 minutes and the photo will be in your email, waiting for you to save it to your computer from your email.  Having an archive in your Gmail of all incoming and outgoing text messages is great to have in case you need to "refresh" someone's memory when they deny that drunk text that they sent you last week.  Another feature of this app is that you can restore you messages if you need to.  Have you factory reset your phone?  Did you lose your phone?  Either way, using SMS Backup+ you get all of your old text messages back on your phone with little hassle.  You cannot respond to text messages from your email so this app will only back up and restore your messages which can be a life saver.

Next up is DeskSMS.  This app is from the popular clockworkmod group and it will allow you to send and receive SMS messages from your desk.  Right now the app is in beta but you can still get it on the Android Market.  With DeskSMS, you can get your SMS messages, sent to your Gmail account, Gtalk account, via a web page or even a Chrome extension.  With this amount of variety, you should be able to get your SMS messages at home using your Chrome browser extension or even at work where you're probably not the admin and not able to install any add ons.  Simply go to http://www.clockworkmod.com/desksms/ and log in with your Gmail account.  This app works flawlessly from what I've experienced with it and now that the Chrome extension is available, I won't ever have to leave my desk to see who just sent me a message.  This app will not forward MMS messages but with SMS Backup+, you'll have those in your email already.  This app will work wonders for those who work in buildings that act more like a Faraday Cage then an office.  Leave your phone by the window where you get signal and you won't walk out the door and get bombarded with text messages that you've missed while you were at your desk.

These two apps provide Android the type of versatility that neither iOS nor Windows Phone 7 is providing right now.  I'm sure you can jailbreak an iPhone and find something similar to these apps in Cydia's app store but you have to void your warranty to get them.  I don't think WP7 has anything like but I'm sure someone from SMR will correct me if I'm wrong.  Both of these apps are readily available in the Android Market and you don't need to void your warranty to get them working.

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