Free Text Messaging on iPhone and iPod Touch

May 20, 2010 at 5:00 am 43 comments

By Chad Upton | Editor

Update: After many problems with PingChat!, I’d be hesitant to recommend it any longer. WhatsApp seems to be the best alternative at this time. It’s available for iOS, Android, Blackberry and Nokia (Symbian).

I know this is pretty specific to iPhone and iPod touch users, but with 50 million iPhones sold and 35 million iPod touches, there are 85 million of you out there.

Ever since the introduction of the iPhone 3GS and the 3.0 Operating System last year, push notifications have been available to iPhone users. Basically, these are real time messages that can be sent to your phone from Apple’s notification server.

The best part about these messages is that they’re free and your iPhone or iPod touch can be on standby or in any application when you receive them.

There are lots of applications (“apps”) that use this feature. For example, the facebook app (free) will buzz your phone with a notification when someone sends you a message or comments on a photo…etc.

The associated press (free) app will give you push notifications when breaking news is happening, allowing you to tune in and catch the car chase live or see the story as it’s unfolding.

One of the most practical uses for this feature is instant messaging. My favorite text messaging application for iPhone is PingChat! (Ping! Lite is also available for free). This app is great if you text a lot but don’t want to pay for it.

PingChat! works just like the native text messaging application on iPhone, except all your messages are free. With the paid version, which only costs $0.99, you can send pictures too. This app also works for iPod Touch users, so you can text message them when they are on a wifi network.

PingChat! is like Blackberry Messenger for iPhone — users within the blackberry network can message each other for free with Blackberry Messenger.

Since I have a lot of friends outside the US, this is a great way for us to keep each other up-to-date with the little things and avoid the $0.50/message SMS cost for international texts.

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43 Comments Add your own

  • 1. TrixieRix  |  May 24, 2010 at 10:41 pm

    Cool, I guess. It seemed sort of ridiculous to me that I can afford an expensive phone and an expensive contract only to nickel & dime it on the unlimited messaging. Kind of like riding on $10k rims but can’t scrape together enough change to put gas in the tank.

    • 2. Chad Upton  |  May 25, 2010 at 8:20 am

      Even if you’re rich, saving money is important — if you’re not born into money then you have to save money to get rich.

      Unlimited messaging on AT&T costs $20. For me, Ping! is really important for international texting, which AT&T does not offer an unlimited plan for. I could easily double my bill with international texting at $0.50 a text. Doubling your bill would be like riding a $10k car and putting $10k rims on it.

      • 3. James  |  June 3, 2010 at 10:17 am

        If I take my iPod Touch out of the country, but I am on WiFi, do I still receive texts (via PingChat) sent from within the U.S (and can I still send texts to the U.S. the same way)? Since its WiFi, I would assume so, but I’m a technological simpleton.

      • 4. Chad Upton  |  June 3, 2010 at 10:34 am

        Yes, as long as you’re on wifi or cell network, it will work. I have used PingChat! on wifi outside of the country to text with friends. Works great. Although, you should let them know you’re on wifi if there may be times when you’ll be off wifi, especially if they’re used to texting you all day when you’re normally on the cell network at home.

  • 5. Kim  |  June 7, 2010 at 2:32 am

    Wow…I am telling everyone I know about this.

  • 8. Jennifer  |  July 12, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    I really want to download this app!

    • 9. kyrsyalp  |  March 26, 2011 at 8:15 pm

      lol wow haha me to i want to know that to !!!!!

    • 11. Shayna Marshall  |  February 17, 2013 at 4:24 pm

      Witch app are you talking about?

  • 12. Natalie  |  August 7, 2010 at 11:10 pm

    Um how do you text on this website?

    • 13. Shayna Marshall  |  February 17, 2013 at 2:38 pm

      It’s easy,u just do what you just did!

  • 14. Sarah  |  October 14, 2010 at 6:02 am

    Does this work only iPhone to iPhone? Or can I receive these texts from someone that has a different phone?

    • 15. Shayna Marshall  |  February 17, 2013 at 4:39 pm

      It can receive to different phones too!!

  • 16. Dixie  |  October 29, 2010 at 1:15 pm

    About time for free texting for the iPod touch

  • 17. Dejuan price  |  November 5, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    i dont know how to download this free texting on my ipod touch please tell me or give me some intruction okay!!!!!!

    • 18. Shayna Marshall  |  February 17, 2013 at 4:47 pm

      I don’t either, I guess u just click on the picture

  • 19. karina medina  |  November 15, 2010 at 8:50 pm


  • 20. Rose Buenconsejo  |  December 3, 2010 at 11:06 pm

    try heywire too. u can text from your ipod touch.

  • 21. rober novotny  |  January 24, 2011 at 4:50 pm

    hey, i am using bb 9700. i had downloaded this app, but i dont know how to set up the connection settings so it only works when i am on wifi only. thanks

  • 22. ahmed  |  February 7, 2011 at 8:38 pm

    thankk uuuu

  • 23. chubiboooooooooooo  |  February 12, 2011 at 2:38 am


  • 24. Yesenia  |  February 26, 2011 at 11:25 pm


  • 25. Nigel  |  April 18, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    I would like this

  • 26. Yulisa  |  August 24, 2011 at 3:23 pm


  • 27. vitalik  |  August 24, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    wait so can u txt without wifi??
    for free

    • 28. Chad Upton  |  August 28, 2011 at 11:38 pm

      You need wifi and your friend needs the same app. You can’t sms someone who doesn’t have the app.

  • 29. Uby  |  September 29, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    How could someone text you from an e-mail to your I-pod-touch?

    I know the I-pod assigned number but I need something after the @????????…. to be able to send the message. I have found the answer for the different wireless companies but what is it for I-pod?

  • 30. Beef  |  December 3, 2011 at 7:39 pm

    Err, well it’s not really free if you pay for Internet usage! If you’re on wifi you may as well email…
    Way to over-hype a product though guys!

  • 31. Ikran  |  January 27, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    I like to tex

  • 32. ana  |  April 8, 2012 at 10:51 pm

    with this app can you also msg blackberry’s or just iphone and ipods?

    • 33. Chad Upton  |  April 9, 2012 at 12:19 am

      With whatsapp you can message anyone with that app installed. It’s available for most of the major platforms: iOS, Android, Blackberry, Symbian and I assume they’ll add windows mobile too. As long as the person has wifi or a cell data connection then you can message them.

  • 34. Kayla Fingleton  |  June 21, 2012 at 2:37 pm


  • 35. Ashley  |  July 30, 2012 at 12:58 pm

    okay, yeah but do u need wifi for it?

  • 36. Keemarey  |  August 16, 2012 at 9:42 am

    How to get this shit

  • 37. hussein rabab  |  September 5, 2012 at 3:01 pm

    I like this

  • 38. Natalie  |  December 25, 2012 at 9:39 pm


  • 39. Shayna Marshall  |  February 17, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    Hello this is jayden.

  • 40. Shayna Marshall  |  February 17, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    Is there anybody I know on this website?
    I want to talk to somebody that I know

  • 41. Rebecca  |  March 14, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    it is awesome it freakin rocks

  • 42. Alexis scholze  |  March 19, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    i love to text message on my i pod touch but how much Would it cost

  • 43. Rolando  |  March 12, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    I take pleasure in, cause I discovered exactly what I used to be having a look for.

    You have ended my four day long hunt! God Bless you
    man. Have a great day. Bye


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