Alexa, the virtual voice assistant offers a vast number of functionalities; sending text messages is one of them. This article will show you the concise steps needed to send text messages with Alexa. However, before you can send messages, you need a compatible Echo device, a mobile device with the Alexa app installed, and also an iOS 10 or Android 5.1 or later version.
While sending text messages with Alexa, note that messages can be sent to a specific contact’s mobile phone, instead of sending messages to people via the Alexa app, but there’s one restriction, which will be addressed as you read on.
The Alexa voice assistant can be used to send SMS text messages, either using the Alexa smartphone app or by simply speaking to the Amazon assistant.
Alexa and Echo are used for different purposes, and one of the most amazing features of Alexa is the ability to use them to send text messages.
Some time ago, the devices could only send texts to your contacts who had Alexa on their smartphone installed. But you can now send text messages with Alexa to any mobile phone around the world.
In case you are still wondering how you can send text messages and receive text messages with Alexa, then this post is solely for you as it will teach you how to set it up and begin the process.
Compatible Devices to Send Text Messages with Alexa
Now that you know Alexa can send and receive text messages, note that the recipient’s device must have a supported operating system for Alexa Communication. In case your device has one of these operating systems, then you can send and receive text messages with Alexa:
- Android phones with OS 5.1 or higher (which was released in 2015).
- iPhone or Apple devices with iOS 10.0 or higher (Released in 2016).
- Fire OS 126.96.36.199 or higher (Fire tablets only).
Your recipient will be able to receive your text messages as long as they are in your address book even if they don’t have an Amazon Echo. However, to enjoy the unlimited messaging experience, ensure you have a supported OS device, and also have the Alexa app installed.
How to Set Up SMS With Alexa
Before you can start texting with Alexa, you need to enable SMS on your Alexa app. To activate the SMS features using Alexa is quite straightforward, simply follow the steps below:
- Launch the Alexa app on your Mobile device.
- Click on the speech symbol located at the lower part of the screen to access the Communicate section.
- Click on the Message symbol.
- In case it’s your first time, the app may ask to grant permission to access your contact list. Grant the permission and Alexa will provide you a list of people in your smartphone directory available for messaging.
- Verify your correct current phone number, and you can now send text messages.
This Alexa feature is much different from your phone plan. You won’t have to exhaust your plan’s limit of texts or minutes when you send text messages with Alexa.
How to Send Text Messages With Alexa using Echo Devices
After you must have registered and given Alexa unlimited access to your contacts, then you can make use of Echo to send text messages with Alexa, following the steps below:
- To send a text message, just say, “Alexa send a message to (name of the contact)”.
- You will be asked by Alexa to provide the recipient’s name.
- Simply select one of the contacts listed in your Alexa app.
- You will need to state the text of your message to Alexa.
- Dictate the text, and Alexa will send the message swiftly.
- Reply with a “Yes” once Alexa asks if she can send the message.
To send text messages with Alexa, you can say things like:
- “Alexa, send an SMS”.
- “Alexa, send a text message”.
- “Alexa, send an SMS to [contact name]”.
- “Alexa, send a text message to [contact name]”.
In case you are using the native Alexa messaging, you must say either “Alexa, send a message“, or “Alexa, send a message to [contact name]”.
How to Send Text Messages with Alexa App
Another method to send a text message with Alexa is by making use of the app itself, follow the steps below:
- Make sure you launch the Alexa app.
- Click on the speech symbol located at the lower section of the screen.
- Navigate to Communication and select Message.
- Choose the recipient from your contacts list (Note that the recipient here must have an Alexa device or the Alexa app (It’s possible they certainly have both instead of just one or the other of course).
- Click on “New Conversation” just at the top-right corner of your display.
- Select the contact you want to send a text message to.
- Long-press on the microphone icon and state your message or press the keyboard icon to type it.
- Immediately you are done dictating or typing, Alexa will send your message.
- Just like that! That’s it!
However, note that if you say: “Alexa, send a text” it will only send an SMS to the contact’s phone number, not their Alexa app.
Note that the light ring will turn yellow once a text message is sent to your Alexa device. In case you want to listen to the received message, simply say: “Alexa, read my messages”, and the virtual voice assistant will read out anything found new.
How to Send Text Messages in the U.S. with Echo
Do you use an Android phone? If yes, users of Android are allowed to also send an SMS message in the U.S. with Echo, follow the steps below to achieve that:
- Open the Alexa app and click on the speech bubble.
- Select Contacts, followed by “My Profile”.
- Ensure to switch the Send SMS function to “On”.
- Speak to the Echo and direct Alexa to message someone from your contact list.
- You will be asked to dictate your message by Alexa.
- The SMS will be sent once you’ve stated your message.
However, note that for this form of communication, you will be charged. Also, texting emergency services, group messages, and multimedia messages aren’t supported.
Sending SMS messages to people outside your contact list is also an option, follow the steps below:
- Command Alexa to send a message to a particular phone number.
- Dictate the message, and Alexa will convey it correctly.
In other words, note that you can only send SMS messages from an Android phone. Since Apple doesn’t allow third parties to access its API, iPhone doesn’t support this feature.
How to Schedule the “Do Not Disturb” Function
In case you want to stop Alexa from notifying you about messages and calls, you can make use of the Do Not Disturb option. All you need to do is tell Alexa not to disturb you. Funny right? Instead, you can schedule the Do Not Disturb function, simply follow the steps below:
- Go to the Settings option.
- Locate the “All Devices” option.
- Click on the “Select Your Device” option.
- Tap on the “Do Not Disturb”.
- Select “Scheduled”.
- That’s it! Now, you have successfully scheduled the do not disturb function.
Can’t Send Text Messages with Alexa? Try these Fixes!
Sending text messages via Alexa and Echo usually works like a magic, this process is however vulnerable to all sorts of errors, try the fixes below in case you encounter any issue while trying to send text messages with Alexa:
When Messaging stops working on Echo Input
Did you get an input response that messaging is no longer supported on your device? Then try to unplug the input and restart your device, this might be the fastest solution. However, in case that doesn’t work, try the following method below:
- Turn on Alexa and navigate to the “Devices” section.
- Select the “Select Your Echo Input” option.
- Click on “Communication”.
- Turn off the “Calling and Messaging” feature.
- Remove the Echo Input and plug the device back in.
- Go back to the Alexa app and switch on the “Calling and Messaging” option.
- That’s it!
When you can’t set up your device
One other common issue is when you can’t set up your Echo device which may be caused because the system may not be running on the most recent version. You can try this quick fix below to be able to send text messages with Alexa:
- Launch your Alexa app on a mobile device or the website.
- Navigate to the Main Menu and click on “Settings”.
- Select your device and go to the “About” section.
- Right under this tab, differentiate your device software from the most recent version.
- In case the system needs an update, verify Echo is powered and connected to a stable and reliable Wi-Fi network using a simple command. You can be sure by asking the device to tell you the time.
- Locate the mute key, marked by a circle or microphone. Long-press and release the button, then a LED light will indicate that muting is activated.
- Wait for about 30 minutes. You will be informed by Alexa once she needs to update the system and begin the installation process.
- After the process has ended, your device will automatically restart unmuted and with the most recent updates.
Another way, you can reset your Echo with Alexa on your Android smartphone:
- Open Alexa and go to the “Devices” section.
- Select the “Echo and Alexa” option located at the upper part of the screen.
- Choose the speaker that will be reset.
- Locate and tap the “Factory Reset” option.
- Verify the process.
- That’s it!
To reset the device manually, follow the steps below depending on the brand of your Echo device:
First-generation Echo devices: This should be reset with a paper clip or a close item. Use the paper clip to long-press on your Reset button. Wait for the ring to come up and down.
Reset your Echo Dot second generation: This is done by pressing and holding the volume button down and microphone off buttons altogether. Wait for the light ring to turn orange, this takes about 20 seconds.
Reset an Echo Dot with Clock, third-generation, or fourth-generation Echo Dot speaker: This is done by pressing and holding your action button for about 25 seconds. This is found at the right section of the upper panel.
This is all about how you can send text messages with Alexa without any hassle. The steps are quite straightforward to comprehend. Let’s know if you can now send text messages with Alexa all by yourself in the comment section below. Thanks for reading thus far.