People + email

Send a text or chat

In Windows Phone, Threads let you switch between texting and chatting in the same conversation. So whether your friends and family are on their cell phones or at their computers, you can keep in touch with them by texting, or by chatting over Facebook or Messenger.

Note

Your mobile operator might charge you extra for text messaging or sending media files in a text message, and these services must be available with your current phone plan.

To send a message

  1. On Start Start icon, tap Messaging Messaging tile, and then tap New Add icon.

  2. Enter a phone number or contact, type your message, and then tap Send Send icon.

    You can also tap a contact in People People Hub icon and text from there. For contacts you've pinned to Start, just tap their Tile.

To send a message using Speech

You can use Speech to dictate your message, hands free.

  1. Press and hold the Start Start icon button on your phone to start Speech.

  2. Say, "Text contact name" (where contact name is the name of someone in your contact list. Example: "Text Lisa Miller"

  3. Say your message. When you're done speaking, do one of the following:

    • Say "Send" or tap Send Send icon to send your message as written.
    • Say "Add more" to add more to the message.
    • Tap Edit Edit icon to go to Messaging Messaging tile and edit your message.
    • Say "Try again" or tap Try again Speak icon to say your message again.

You can also use Speech to write a message from within a Thread.

  1. On Start Start icon, tap Messaging Messaging tile.

  2. Open a Thread or tap New Add icon, tap Speak Speak icon, and then say your message.

To share photos and other media files in a text

  1. On Start Start icon, tap Messaging Messaging tile.

  2. Open a Thread or tap New Add icon, tap Attach Attach icon, and then tap what you want to share.

You can also tap More More icon > Share > Messaging from a photo, video, or song to share it. You can share other things, too, such as websites, contacts—even your location. To learn more, see Share photos, videos, and more in a text message.

Notes

  • To chat on Messenger, you'll need to sign in to your phone with a Microsoft account.
  • To chat over Facebook, you'll need to set up a Facebook account on your phone and then turn on Facebook Chat.
  • If you type a message but don't send it, a draft will be saved automatically. You can then edit it later and send it, or delete it. To get to your drafts, in Messaging Messaging tile, tap More More icon > Drafts.
  • To select and add more than one contact at a time to a text message, or for drafts of messages to be saved automatically, your phone must be running Windows Phone software version 8.0.10211.204 or later. See How do I update my phone software? for more information about how to update your phone.
  • Group text (in Messaging settings) helps keep replies in one Thread while you're texting with a group of people. When it's turned on, replies are sent as MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) messages instead of SMS (Short Message Service) text messages. To find this setting, in Messaging Messaging tile, tap More More icon > Settings. This setting can vary by mobile operator and might not appear. Your mobile operator might charge extra for MMS messaging, and this service must be available with your current phone plan.
  • If you can't send or receive MMS messages on your phone, you might need to manually enter a new MMS APN (access point name) in Messaging settings, based on your location and mobile operator. To learn how to do this, see the "Add MMS APN" section in Cellular settings.

To reply to a message

  1. On Start Start icon, tap Messaging Messaging tile, and then tap the Thread that has the message you received.

  2. Tap the message box, type your response, and then tap Send Send icon.

  3. To switch between text and chat, tap Switch Switch icon, and then tap the way you want to send the message. Your conversation will stay in one Thread.

    Text message conversation

Note

You won't be able to switch between text and chat during a conversation with multiple people.

To set your chat status

  1. On Start Start icon, tap Messaging Messaging tile, and then tap Status Status icon.

  2. On the Set chat status screen, tap a status.

Notes

  • You can also set your chat status from the Me card. For more info, see Use the Me card to stay in touch.
  • After you set your chat status and sign in, you can see who's online and start chatting. To start chatting with someone, in Messaging Messaging tile, flick left to Online, and then tap a contact.

To delete a message or Thread

  1. On Start Start icon, tap Messaging Messaging tile.

  2. Under Threads, do one of the following:

    • Tap to the left of one or more messages or Threads to select each one, and then tap Delete Messaging tile.
    • Tap and hold the message or Thread you want to delete, and then tap Delete.
  3. Tap Delete to confirm.

Notes

  • Text messages (SMS messages) can be up to 160 characters long. If your text message is longer than 160 characters, it will be sent in one or more additional messages.
  • Sometimes mobile operators will send a text message that you can't reply to or forward, and the message box says Read-only message.

Related topics

Tell us what you think