Can You Get Your Text Messages Saved to Gmail?

by Serm Murmson

If you wish to back up your text messages outside of your phone, you can send them to your Gmail account. One method is to forward individual messages that you have received to your Gmail account. You can also email outgoing messages to your own Gmail address in addition to the intended recipient. Alternatively, you can email your text messages using a third-party app or through a Google Voice number.

Sending Text Messages to Gmail

In order to send a text message to your Gmail address, just type your Gmail address into the recipient field of the message and send it. In this way, you can forward old messages that you have received or you can compose new messages that get delivered to your Gmail inbox as well as to any other intended recipients.

SMS vs. MMS Messages

If you send a new text message to a recipient in addition to your Gmail address, the message may be formatted as a Multimedia Messaging Service message instead of a Short Message Service message. A message that is sent as a group conversation will be sent as an MMS message in which all recipients are visible to each other. A message that is sent as individual messages will be sent as a series of individual SMS messages. If your recipients can't receive MMS messages or if your carrier charges you a fee for MMS messages, make sure to set your outgoing messages to send as individual messages.

Third-Party Apps

If you wish to use an app to send your text messages to Gmail from an Android phone, you can also use a third-party app. SMS Backup +, SMS Backup & Recovery and Relay Me are three free apps that can email your text messages. On an iPhone, the process may be a bit more laborious. You can back up your phone using the iTunes backup utility on your computer. This will save all of your text messages in a file called "sms.db." You can open this file using SQLite, though you may need to rename this file with an .sqlite extension first. Once you have opened the file, you can extract your messages from the file and email them to your Gmail address.

Google Voice

If you wish to set up a separate Google Voice number, you can easily back up all of its incoming text messages to your Gmail address. Once you configure a Google Voice number, you can select the option that reads "Forward text messages to my email" within your Google Voice Settings menu. Any text messages sent to your Google Voice number will forward automatically to your Gmail account.

About the Author

Serm Murmson is a writer, thinker, musician and many other things. He has a bachelor's degree in anthropology from the University of Chicago. His concerns include such things as categories, language, descriptions, representation, criticism and labor. He has been writing professionally since 2008.

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