I was taken aback when I saw the new Gmail SMS feature while checking my mail. My excitement knew no bounces when the new Gmail free SMS feature was further elaborated by GNigeria team when I attended the Google Nigeria (GNigeria) 2012 event at Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos Nigeria.
Well, the new SMS feature allows you to send free text messages (SMS) to your friends directly from your Gmail account. Did I hear you say WOW!
With this, you are able to send free SMS to contacts on your Gmail account. Initially, you are allocated 50 SMS units, whenever you send text message, one SMS unit will be deducted from your account. Whenever you receive or someone replies to your text message from phone, you get additional 4 SMS units for free.
In a situation where you have exhausted all your SMS units (use it to send text messages), you can buy additional units by sending text messages to your phone and replying it back or just keep replying the message you sent – You will receive additional 4 units for every SMS you replied from your phone or someone replies. Please note that you can only have maximum of 50 units of SMS.
If your SMS credit goes down to zero at any point, it will increase back up to one 24 hours later. So, you won’t ever be locked out of the system.
Also note that when replying to messages from your phone, it is not free, the normal fee charge by your operator is applied. It depends on how much your operator charges for sending SMS.
If you are wondering how to use this Gmail free text message, this article on How to Send Free SMS Using Gmail Free SMS Feature will put you through.
Gmail SMS Supported Mobile Operators
For now, the Gmail free SMS is available to some selected mobile operators that have signup with Gmail. What this means is that, if your mobile operator is not registered with Gmail, you won’t be able to receive text message.
In Nigeria, we have five mobile operators registered with Gmail as at the time of writing this article. There are:
Other countries where Gmail free SMS available are:
Congo, Democratic Republic
Please for comprehensive list of all the countries together with the registered mobile operators, you are enjoined to check Google support website here.