Google has recently launched a new interesting feature for Africans; the feature is called Gmail SMS. Gmail SMS allows Google Mail users to send and receive emails via text messages.
This simply implies that Gmail users will be able to send and receive emails offline without any internet connection. This service will work on any phone that supports voice and SMS.
This new service is presently available in Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya. This will enable users in Africa to read and respond to their email from their respective mobile device.
This service can be activated easily on phone. To activate this service, got to Phone and SMS settings in Gmail, then add your phone number and complete the verification process. After activation, all emails will be forwarded to your phone as text messages.
Geva Rechav (Google product manager) writes on the official Google Africa blog:
“Gmail SMS automatically forwards your emails as SMS text messages to your phone and you can respond by replying directly to the SMS. You can control the emails received by replying with commands such as MORE, PAUSE and RESUME. Additionally, compose a new email as an SMS and send to any email address recipient – who will find your message in the right email conversation thread!”
So every messages receive will be free while any messages sent will be subject to standard network rates.
It will be free to receive messages from the system, but any sent texts will be subject to standard network rates.
Presently, Gmail SMS is only available across three African countries. Google may wish to expand this feature to other countries in the future.