Phan Favs: What is the best Messaging app? [VOTE]


PhanFavsVOTE sms

Phan Favs is a recurring feature that turns the tables and asks you, the readers, about the best apps and games. It’s your turn to drop some knowledge on us! Read more.

A couple of weeks ago in our inaugural Phan Favs poll we asked about the best weather apps for Android. After an impressive turnout the app that you picked as the best was 1Weather by OneLouder. This week we have another question for you, our insightful readers: what is the best messaging app for Android?

A messaging app can be anything you use to communicate with people. It could be a 3rd-party SMS app, a proprietary messaging service, or even a voice calling app. Android has tons of great messaging apps available. However, the best messaging app is not always the favorite. We want to know which ones you think are the best.

How to vote

  1. Upvote the comment that mentions your pick.
  2. If no one has mentioned your pick write your own comment.

It’s as simple as that. Next Thursday (May 1st) we will compile the results and release the top five apps according to your votes. In order to get a good sample size we need your help in sharing this poll. Click right here to tell your tweet about it, and also alert your favorite developers so they can vote!


Joe Fedewa
Ever since I flipped open my first phone I've been obsessed with the devices. I've dabbled in other platforms, but Android is where I feel most at home.

Big Android BBQ 2014 set for October 16-18

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  1. Hangouts!

    1. I hope this becomes the stock messaging app on all devices starting with the next version of Android. To hell with fragmentation.

      1. It needs to get a lot better before that. As someone who doesn’t use Hangouts a lot for IM it’s a pain to use the app for SMS.

        1. Not with the newest update. Its fantastic.

          1. I’ve used the newest update.

          2. Then you don’t know how to use Hangouts properly. Everyone I know, even my 60 year old dad loves it.

          3. I think it’s great for using Hangouts IM, but I prefer to have a separate app for SMS. That’s just me.

          4. I’m with you on that one. I don’t know why, but I just feel like i want my text messages to be separate than my IM’s.

          5. It’s still lacking per contact custom notifications and without that it’s still a no go for me.

        2. But now IM and SMS are integrated so it is no longer a pain.

        3. sorry for double post, trying to get the link to verify email address to pop up again.

        4. I don’t know if it was CM or the old Android stock SMS app, but you used to be able to reply from the notification bar. I want that, alongside my contact photos being near the text of each text message.

        5. I don’t use it for IM at all, well, maybe 1-2 conversation threads, but I love it for SMS it does everything I need and works very nicely.

    2. Yea it came a long way this week, too bad the name is still terrible. It should be called gChat.

      1. You are right. I used to always call Google Talk g-chat.

    3. Voting for Hangouts purely after the update to merge conversations. But honestly, I could pick Whatsapp also for just doing everything most people need easily. Telegram for the fact it has secure messaging and file sizes of 1gb can be sent. Even Contacts+ as it has messaging and a lot more in one app. I wish it were as simple as having just one favourite!

  2. Standard stock app, meets my needs

  3. Chomp SMS

  4. 8sms

  5. Facebook Messenger

  6. Textra ..gotta love those gifs.

    1. You can use gifs in hangouts.

      1. Textra has it built in, you could put in any action..say funny and all these “funny” related gifs come up.

    2. But hangouts does gifs…

  7. standard SMS…lol

    1. Which one? The HTC One is alright. Though, I prefer my contact photos be next to the text.

      1.…technically it is an application that is installed on the is for messaging…lol I use my GS3…both regular SMS and Hangouts

    1. How many times are you going to vote? lol

      1. I think someone should have done this from the start, comment a bunch of apps and we vote, we can critique and talk about apps by replying to the comments

  8. GoSMS Pro – love the popup notification and handles multimedia between iphone and android great.

    1. GoSMS Pro has gotten way too bloated for me. Even with the paid subscription there’s all these extra notifications and too many menus. Switched back to Chomp.

    1. Lool i got a downvote because i said something of samsung? Good HTC fanboys are here.

      1. You got a down vote because ChatON is probably the biggest waste of programming skills gone down the drain.

      2. *says they have a downvote*
        *has no downvote*

        1. it was removed

        2. Do inspect element on the downvote button and you see count=1.

          or use the chrome extension to view disqus downvotes. I use the inspect element glitch.

    2. ChatOn is actually really good. Too bad nobody really uses it though.

    1. By far, Hello SMS is the finest SMS app that I’ve ever used. I’d love it if Hangouts would both vastly improve their horrible lagginess and finally integrate Voice. Until then, Hangouts is a distant second. As for everything else, they are just there because other people use them (whatsapp, telegram, etc).

    2. Hello is my current fave too :)

    3. Not very good reviews on Google Play.

  9. Facts are facts: iMessage

    But it looks like Hangouts came a long way this week, sadly the name for the app is still terrible. They should call it gChat.

    1. Read first, it is saying in the article: what is the best messaging app for Android?

      Not Apple devices.

      1. Always a fanboy that has to pipe up about Apple.

  10. Handcent

  11. Line

  12. Vine

    1. This is the SMS app I use. Love it.

      1. It’s fast, clean and user friendly.

  13. EvolveSMS

    1. This. They’ve really come a long way with their recent updates to the application.

      1. Agreed. Once I started using it, I wondered how I ever lived without it.

    2. Definitely the best used to be a long time gosms user but it became bloated with there addons there stupid ads in the sidebar evolve is clean sleek and customizable but still looks perfect if you don’t customize it

  14. I use IM+ since I have people who use different messenging services and it keeps everyone in one app. For SMS its Google Hangouts.

  15. Hangouts + Google Voice voip integration (vs without)

  16. I use Line and Whatsapp mainly, hangouts sometimes.

  17. I use Hangouts works perfectly for me !!

  18. Google Hangouts: Honestly hands-down, I prefer Hangouts, everyone I communicate with has it, and I can’t recommend it enough.

  19. This is a stupid way of conducting a poll vs an embeddable poll like every other post with a poll ever on Phandroid. This seems like a weak attempt to create artificial interest in your article.

    1. Feel free to provide a list of every messaging app on Android for everyone to pick from then. But given that list would be stupidly huge, this way works. App with most upvotes, wins, easy.

      1. This lets us get great feedback from our community so we know WHAT to do more research on and what real power users care about and use so when we DO post the real article, it’s got a helluva lot more information, opinions, real-life data, and purpose.

        1. So how do you reconcile a program like Hangouts that gets a lot of upvotes, but spread out over dozens of different comments? It would seem better to do the polling in 2 steps: open comments to solicit suggestions, then a true poll of the top suggestions.

          1. I just add them all up. It’s really not that hard.

    2. Yeah, like @martin_golder:disqus said, that would be impossible.

  20. Contacts+

  21. It’s new, from the group that does MightyText, but I’m loving it so far. It’s called SimplyText:

  22. It’s a toss up between Hangouts, evolve sms, and hoverchat. I can’t pick my favorite between those three.

    1. Evolve!

  23. I would like to try Hangouts. Is it customizeable? Can you assign a different ringtone to each contact? Can you change the fonts and colors? backgrounds?

    1. No, no, no, and no. This is why I don’t use it. I’m used to different ringtones per contact.

      1. Wow. Why is there so much love for it? Customization is the heart and soul of Android, isn’t it?

        1. My thoughts exactly. I guess it’s because there are a lot of Google sheep who insist anything with the name Google is good.

  24. The new hangouts.

  25. Standard Google Messaging App. Perfect. If its not broke, dont replace it.

    1. Was nice until they removed it from KitKat :/

  26. Sliding SMS Messaging from CM

  27. Rockin’ stock G2 messaging app… Enjoying every moment!

  28. The stock Samsung SMS app.

    I’d use hangouts but I like assigning separate notification tones to each contact, and the white background is horrible. I do use hangouts for IM though.

  29. TextSecure
    OpenSource, full encryption, integrated sms, all you could wish for (and if not all of your wishes satisfied, it’s OpenSource…)

  30. Sliding SMS, by FAR

  31. used a bunch of SMS apps in the past, favorites were handcent & chomp. But I found textra and I find it to be the best. Light on resources and lightning quick.

  32. hangouts is pretty good

  33. BBM

  34. I like MySMS by Up to Eleven Digital Solutions GmbH

  35. KIK.

  36. 8sms is my favourite for its simplicity.

  37. PK SMS

    It combines the best features of Go SMS, Evolve SMS, Hangouts (Sort of), and stock. All that while remaining smooth and stable ;D

    1. link?

  38. Textra!!!!

  39. Hoverchat!!!!

  40. 8SMS


  42. IONU – new, really cool encrypted messaging app

  43. This is a really cool app. You can control your messages after they have been sent and they’re completely private and secure. And, it’s FREE!

  44. AOSP Messaging app ;)

  45. I should have said the IONU Messaging and file sharing app! Great messaging app and more.

  46. Tango

  47. Google voice… Because I still have my Nationwide 450 & unlimited data sans vzw messaging. The only way I pay $68/month for my G2 with an average 22gigs per months used. I got the last laugh. Can’t wait till Google figures out hangouts integration

  48. Aint nothing better than VIBER

    text, voice, full desktop client, awesome stickers.

    What more could a messaging app do?

  49. I use Sliding SMS for text messages. It’s based on CM messaging. Fast, beautiful and packed with features.

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