iMessage Brings Texting to iPod Touch and iPad Users

Monday June 6, 2011 2:38 PM PDT by Jordan Golson
Apple today announced iMessage, a new messaging service for iOS 5 users called. The service promises unlimited SMS-esque messaging between iOS users on iPod touch devices, iPhones and iPads. iMessages can be text, photos, videos, locations or include contact data.

iMessage Features

If it sounds like BBM, RIM's BlackBerry Messaging service, that's because, well, it sounds a lot like BBM actually -- and increases device lock-in as well. Users of iPads and iPod touch devices will get built-in text and picture messaging, unlimited and free, which is nice for parents who don't want to splurge on an iPhone for little Timmy, but still want him to be able to keep in touch with friends.

For iPhone users, iMessage will be built in to the standard text message window, so using it should be pretty seamless. Other features include group messaging, delivery and read receipts, typing notification and secure encryption. Of course, keeping with the sync via iCloud theme, users will be able to start a conversation on one device and finish it on another. No word yet if iMessage will be included in iChat for OS X Lion as well, but I wouldn't be surprised if it makes an appearance there as well.

Related roundup: iPhone 6

Top Rated Comments

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Posted: 45 months ago
Several of my friends have iPhones or iPads, if I can text them using messaging this instead of SMS it can save me some hard earned cash from ATT :D
Rating: 4 Votes
Posted: 45 months ago
Why didn't they just make iMessage the goto messaging app for everything iOS/OSX...just like they did re: video with FaceTime??? Those who still use iChat can carry-on doing so.

As a non-iChat user it would've been excellent getting all msgs that way...with an option to freeze related iOS or OSX device notifications if I happen to be using both devices at the same time and don't want to hear and see duplicate notifications.

Sometimes Apple really surprise me as to their oversights. What they should really do? Offer even PC-users free @me.com email addresses and let them FaceTime and iMessage with all us iOS-users, via free software. What will that do? Encourage them MASSIVELY to buy an iOS device so that their messaging needs are met nice and tidily, at the desktop or when out and about.

I really don't think that having FaceTime and iMessage available on a non-Apple desktop device will reduce sales of Apple's mobile devices, for obvious reasons. Likewise those who buy a Mac buy one for many reasons - FaceTime and iMessage on Windows systems certainly won't stop them from buying a Mac.
Rating: 3 Votes
Posted: 45 months ago

...No word yet if iMessage will be included in iChat for OS X Lion as well...


Integrating the service across OSX and iOS is critical, from my POV.
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 45 months ago
Finally. I was starting to feel left out by Apple. Now, Apple is bringing iPod touch users back into the fold.
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 44 months ago

Hmmm, let's see.

AT&T charges $10 for 1,000 text messages. They also charge $10 per gigabyte of data over 3G if you go over your plan. That gigabyte is equivalent to about 100,000 texts weighing in at 10kb each.

Still worried about overages, or are you just naysaying the future and afraid of change? :)


Actually, text messages are much, much smaller. As an example, your message as quoted above is roughly 320 bytes (if counting the BBCodes), twice the maximum allowed for SMS.

1000 "text" messages (SMS, 160 characters max) for 10$ = 0.01$ per message
6 250 000 "data" messages (one gigabyte diveded by 160 characters messages) for 10$ = 0.0000016$ per message

Via SMS: 1 cent equals one message.
Via data: 1 cent equals 6250 messages.
Rating: 2 Votes
Posted: 45 months ago

Yep.

Apple finally got BBM. :rolleyes:

*Sigh* People were ICQing and AIMing years before RIM even existed.

BBM was nothing original.
Rating: 1 Votes
Posted: 44 months ago

Yep.

Apple finally got BBM. :rolleyes:


So when did RIM finally get ICQ or Yahoo! Messenger or AOL Instant Messenger? For heavens sake, a large majority of the population were using AIM years before BBM ever existed. Folks have been using internet instant messaging clients on iOS since push notifications came out. Apple just decided to roll their own so they could sync the context of the conversation over the cloud.

Maybe I am failing to see something, but what is so special about BBM versus these other services that pre-dated it? How did Apple copy RIM versus Apple copying AOL or Yahoo! or GTalk?
Rating: 1 Votes
Posted: 44 months ago

I get that texts are cheap, I guess it's the way the message was presented that confused me:

It's not so much a new messaging app for iOS5 we're talking about here; the real news is the fact that Apple has presumably inked a deal with every phone carrier around the world for free text messages between iOS devices.


In this context, "text message" is not equal to "SMS".

iMessage is not SMS, it's regular data. The carriers don't have anything to say about it. Apart from using up your monthly data cap unless you use a free Wi-Fi connection, the carriers don't get a cut when you send an email, when you browse the Web or when you use FaceTime. They also won't get anything when you use iMessage.
Rating: 1 Votes
Posted: 44 months ago
Hi

This is my first post so go easy on me

My main concern about iMessage is texting people who have iPod touches and iPads. If the phone can recognise these devices as being registered to someone on you contact list who has a non iOS phone surely it will send the message to the iOS device rather than the phone. I can see this leading to many cases of people waiting for text replies on their phone that never come as they do not check their iPad/iPod for texts??

I hope I made that clear
Rating: 1 Votes
Posted: 44 months ago

Check out http://google.com/voice, there's also an iOS app.

International IP, that is internet, messaging can be done in a variety of ways, of course. iMessages may just make it it easier to setup. If any 2 people on the planet each have a phone with internet access there's no reason to pay carrier fees beyond the cost of data for any communication.


Okay, I'm in Canada. Describe how can I send and receive text messages for free over 3G and WiFi to my friends' phones? I don't want to pay $0.05/text message and $0.75/MMS message that my provider charges.

I haven't been able to find a way to do this. None of the "free" text services/apps work in Canada.
Rating: 1 Votes

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