How to Send Text Messages from Your Chromebook

Person sending SMS from their computer
oatawa / Shutterstock

Chrome OS offers several ways to sync your Chromebook and Android phone. One of its features allows you to access your SMS inbox and reply to SMS from your Chromebook. Here’s how to set it up.

Before you can activate the text messaging feature, you will need to pair your Android smartphone with your Chromebook. For this you need to be running Android 5.1 or later on your phone and at least Chrome OS 71 on your computer. Also, make sure that both devices are signed in to the same Google Account.

On your Chromebook, click on the “Status” tab in the lower right corner and select the “Gear” icon to open the “Settings” menu.

Click on the settings shortcut on Chrome OS

Under “Connected devices”, find the option “Android phone”. Click on the “Configure” button next to it.

Connect Android phone to Chromebook

In the next pop-up window, choose your Android phone from the “Select a device” drop-down list and click the blue “Accept and continue” button.

Select an Android phone to sign in to Chromebook

Enter your Google password and authenticate. If all goes well, the next page will display a message stating “Everything is set”. Click on “Done” to close the window.

Confirm Android Phone and Chromebook Sync

Go back to your Chromebook’s “Settings” menu, and this time there will be a “Check” option next to “Android Phone”. Click on the button then unlock your smartphone. On your Chromebook and Android phone, you should receive a notification that your two devices are paired.

Android phone and Chromebook notification

To activate SMS synchronization, download Google Android Messages app on the Play Store. If you have a Google Pixel, Nokia, or Motorola device, you can skip this step because Android Messages should already be installed on your handset.

On your Chromebook, go to Settings> Connected devices and select your Android phone. Activate the “Messages” toggle and click on the “Configure” button.

Configure Android messages on Chromebook

A new window with a QR code will appear on your computer screen. You need to scan it using your phone to verify the connection.

Scan QR code to link Android and Chromebook messages

Launch the Android Messages app on your phone and tap on the three-dot menu icon in the top right corner. Choose “Messages for the Web” from the pop-up menu.

Press the “QR Code Scanner” button, then point your smartphone’s camera at the QR code on your Chromebook.

Scan the QR code on Android messages

Your Chromebook window should now display your SMS inbox.

You can write new SMS, manage existing threads, attach files, etc. Chrome OS will also add a “Messages” shortcut to your computer’s application library.

Manage Android SMS Inbox on Chromebook

Even if you haven’t opened Messages on your Chromebook, you’ll get a notification every time a new text message arrives on your phone. Note that this feature will only work as long as your Chromebook and Android phone are connected to the internet.

If you want to turn off receiving text messages on your Chromebook, you can do so by going to Settings> Connected devices> your Android phone and turning off the “Messages” option.

Disconnect Android Messages from Chromebook

In addition to SMS messaging, Chrome OS offers some additional features dedicated to Android users, including the ability to instantly link mobile data from your phone.

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