Thursday, September 30, 2010

Free SMS from Gmail to Safaricom

Staying in touch with your girls is important
Did you know that you can now send free SMS to your friends on Safaricom directly from your Gmail account? Try Gmail SMS and start texting your friends from your computer.

You can send SMS messages to your contacts’ mobile phones using Gmail Chat. If your contact replies, the text message response will appear as a reply in Chat. These conversations are stored in your Chat history just like regular chats.

Sending and receiving a message from Gmail to any phone is free. When replying with an SMS from phone to Gmail, you will be charged a regular SMS rate by your mobile provider. Gmail SMS is currently available in Kenya with Safaricom.

Here's how to use Gmail SMS:


  1. Log into your Gmail account. In the Send SMS box above Chat, enter the phone number you want to send a SMS to.
  2. In the dialog box, enter Contact name of the SMS recipient and check that country and phone number are correct. Then, click Save.
  3. Type your message in the chat window and hit Enter.
  4. Your message will be sent to the phone number you entered.
Try it out! It seems to work fine.

SMALL UPDATE: In some cases, e.g. when you are logging in to your Gmail account from abroad, the Gmail SMS feature is not automatically activated (and you can't see the Send SMS box in Gmail). Here's a solution. Try going to Google Labs, select Gmail Labs and enable "SMS in Chat gadget" and "Text Messaging (SMS) in Chat". That should do the trick, like it did for @kenyanpundit.
@marvintumbo also confirmed he received a Gmail SMS from a friend in Sweden. Unfortunately, the friend is a dude and not the blonde Swedish hottie I had hoped for.


Bomseh said...

Very helpful info especially for the ones outside Kenya. Can't wait to get to the cyber.

farmgal said...

have to try it out...thanks

dc9fo said...

It's not working in germany :-(

Sam Wanjere said...

Useful info. Used the feature today and it worked perfectly. I notice Google gives 50 sms's. What will happen once #50s reached? Just thinking. Keep such info coming.

Rafiki said...

@ Bomseh, @ farmgal: Did it work for you guys.

@ dc9fo: It should work in .de, if you follow my trick mentioned in the update.

@ Sam Wanjere: Answer can be found here:

bomseh said...

I have just tried it by using that trick up there. It brought me to Settings. SO it is easier to just go to settings, then Labs and change the necessary. Thanks Rafiki.

antonio said...

you can send free sms worldwide
follow this site
a lot of free sms

Siromzi said...

This nolonger work as from April 1, 2014. Gmail SMS is GONE....ouh :)