Thursday, 4 December 2008

Sending SMS texts from the PC desktop

Ever left your mobile at home and needed to send a text to someone? And even to receive that person's reply without access to your phone? Or just found that ten-finger typing is quicker than predictive TXTing with two thumbs?

I've discovered Vodafone Text Centre does the job (see feature summary in the attached message). You can install it for free, but note that the cost of SMS messages you send using Text Centre goes on to your normal Vodafone mobile account.

There's a very comprehensive manual and online help. Make sure your Outlook isn't running before you start installing (use Task Manager to kill it if necessary).

In a test here in the office, I found that my first outgoing message was delivered in just a few seconds, whereas the reply took around 10 minutes to reach my Outlook inbox (you can choose to have the reply routed to your mobile instead, of course, which is quicker but means that you don't have access to Outlook's convenience features when forwarding or filing the reply).

If you're in the habit of leaving Outlook running when you leave the office, you can also get Text Centre to alert you by SMS when you receive an e-mail (or only for high-priority e-mails) or to send you an SMS alert of upcoming appointments.

Overall, I am impressed. With Vodafone Text Centre you can:
  • Send text messages to individuals and groups from your PC, using your existing contacts and distribution lists.
  • Choose to have replies sent to your mobile phone or to your e-mail inbox.
  • Receive appointment reminders via text messages.
  • Choose to receive text messages to notify you of urgent e-mails.
Vodafone says that Text Centre will be upgraded on a regular basis, so suggests that you visit the website from time to time to ensure you have the most up-to-date version of the software.


Jim said...

Great info, thanks. Vodafone have just shut down their personal backup service that allowed me to do this sending a text. I run Ubuntu linux, would you have any idea if there is a way to run this text service under linux, or is there an alternative programme somewhere?



Immo Hüneke said...

Hi Jim,

Sorry, I have only just seen your comment. As far as I'm aware, Text Centre is specific to MS Outlook (probably only available under Windows, too).

My friend Robert Sprigge has blogged about some alternative approaches - hope they help you!

Best regards,

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