AIM as an alternatve to texting?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Konz, Jun 10, 2009.

  1. Konz macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2009
    #1
    Now that they're testing push notifications with AIM I'm wondering if people think they could use AIM exclusively and get rid of their text plans, or just go with the minimal $5 for 200? IIRC you can send messages to people's phones from AIM pretty easily... not sure how people with normal phones would reach you on AIM though. Can you send a text to someone's AIM username from a normal phone now? :confused:

    $20 is nothing short of ridiculous for texting... what are most other providers, $5 for unlimited?

    Just remembered, even if people can reply to your AIM messages on a normal cell phone they'd probably not be covered by any carrier's unlimited texting plan and have to pay a normal text fee :(
     
  2. imaketouchtheme macrumors 65816

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    Dec 5, 2007
    #2
    You can enter your friend's phone number on AIM as a buddy. For example, you would enter the number like: "+12223334444" (The one being the country code, two being the area code, and the three/fours being their seven digit phone number). It will text their phone and they can respond to it just like normal and it will show up in the AIM conversation.

    Pretty cool!
     
  3. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    Portland, OR
    #3
    I used to use push email for unlimited messaging back before I got an unlimited text plan.
     
  4. Konz thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2009
    #4
    Haha yeah I just saw that in the AIM FAQ, but I'm guessing it would end up costing your friends an arm and a leg if they were responding to tons of AIM messages...

    Any chance they'd be covered under their carrier's unlimited text plan, or are those usually only for within the network?

    Argh... why can't everyone just get with the times and buy a damn iPhone!!
     
  5. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    #5
    If they have an unlimited plan it won't cost them any extra.
     
  6. Konz thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2009
    #6
    Your friends had iPhones or just regular cell phones on other networks?

    I think if I send a reply to an AIM text on my verizon phone it probably costs money despite my unlimited texting plan.... same for responding to texts from email, although I'm not 100% positive on that.

    edit: beaten >< Maybe I'm thinking of some specific in-network only texting plans that I've seen in the past
     
  7. imaketouchtheme macrumors 65816

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    #7
    When you text someone using my method listed above, it is received as a normal text, not at AIM message, so it counts as a text message on their plan. If they have unlimited texting, they won't be charged. :)
     
  8. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    #8
    my friends had regular phones. I'd send a text to their phone using the email:

    1234567890@carrier. com
     
  9. iphones4evry1 macrumors 65816

    iphones4evry1

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    Nov 26, 2008
    Location:
    California, USA
    #9
    Right now you send text messages to your friends and they deal with how they pay for it on their own. The difference here is that YOU will not have to pay for text. Your friends pay for texts right now and they will continue to do so. Nothing changes for your friends, but it does change for YOU.

    Yes, you totally could use the AIM App as your text message App instead of the SMS App that comes on the iPhone. You can do that. When someone sends you a text to your AIM, you will receive a push notification (probably a pop-up, just like a normal text message) on your iPhone, then you go to the AIM App and read the message. Here is where the problem arises: If your friends want to send you a text message right now, they send it to your phone number. But if you want them to send it to your AIM and they don't have an iPhone, then how would they do that ??? I'm guessing that they do not have a way to do that, and will have to send it to your phone number as an SMS.

    Considering that I already pay $69.99 per month for my iPhone service :eek: , I would have no regrets about canceling my text plan and using AIM only. (If AT&T lowered the completely ridiculous $69.99 per month :eek: plan to $59.99 per month, paying for SMS messages wouldn't be such a big deal. But with $69.99 + $15text = $85 per month, the current system is ludicrous! :eek: )
     
  10. Konz thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2009
    #10
    That's exactly what I was thinking. Why should I have to pay more for a text plan just because they're behind the times!

    It seems like the iPhone w/contract is almost as cheap as any normal cell phone...

    Now if only AT&T would follow through on the $20 data plan and leave it unlimited!

    I dunno, maybe there's some way to save it into your contact info once they receive one?

    Or maybe they can just find an old AIM text from you and hit "reply" :confused:
     
  11. iphones4evry1 macrumors 65816

    iphones4evry1

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    #11
    I think the server sends the reply number as your phone number and if they reply, it will go to your phone as an SMS. The only time it goes back to your AIM App is if the other person is on a computer using AIM or if they are on an iPhone, using AIM.
     
  12. Konz thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2009
    #12
    Hmm.... that's not the impression I got at all based on reading the AIM FAQ.

    http://daol.aol.com/software/mac/iphone/aim/faq
    Definitely makes it sound like it's not just a normal text.
     
  13. dpmcdonald macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2009
    #13
    So if I get this straight. You basically get out of getting charged for OUTGOING texts, but the texts sent back to you will go thru SMS (which get charged) then to the AIM app?
     
  14. mak10 macrumors regular

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    Feb 6, 2009
    #14
    I've been doing this for years, it's normal texts on your friends end.

    You use AIM on your iphone to send a message to a friends phone number using +18888888888 as their screen name (obviously it's their phone number not a bunch of 8's) your friend then receives a normal text message from a random short sms number (usually xxx-xxx) that says

    your screen name:
    whatver the message is
    (you can reply to this message)

    then all your friend has to do is respond, via text, to that text message they received and you will get it to your AIM screen name.

    It works the same way as having mobile IM setup on your normal AIM account. If you're not logged in on a computer with your account you still show up in peoples buddy lists, but when they message you it sends a text to your phone which you can reply to....

    no, you avoid text charges all together on your end. When your friend responds it goes through as data to your AIM app just as any normal AIM conversation would do whether the person is using text on the other end or an AIM client.

    You're friend is using text to send the message back to an AOL server, which then pushes that message, using data, to you via AIM.
     
  15. STEVESKI07 macrumors 68000

    STEVESKI07

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    Washington, DC
    #15
    This is completely worthless to me. This is only beneficial if the person your texting knows whatever number it is coming from. Also, if someone is going to try to text you, they are going to text your cell number, not some crazy AIM number. It's too much work.

    Example of the "new" way of texting:

    Me from AIM: Happy Hour tonight at The Grille?
    Joe: Who is this?
    Me from AIM: Steve
    Joe: Yeah, see you there at 7. You get a new number?
    Me from AIM: No, just texting from AIM
    Joe: oh....cool


    This is how every normal 1 line conversation should go:
    Me from cell #: Happy Hour tonight at The Grille?
    Joe: Yeah, see you there at 7.


    Do people not see this? Yeah, it would be nice to save the $20/month to not have to pay texting, but IT WONT WORK. There is no way that AIM can replace SMS without somehow sending AIM message from your cell # and not some crazy #.
     
  16. dpmcdonald macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2009
    #16
    Ah, I see. Thanks for putting that in perspective. So the problem lies in getting texts straight to your iPhone and not to the number AIM provides?

    And to add to this, if you do try to use this to avoid paying $20/mo. you WILL get charged $.20 per text that gets sent directly to your number, correct? Does seem like alot of risk for little reward.
     
  17. themoonisdown09 macrumors 601

    themoonisdown09

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    Location:
    Georgia, USA
    #17
    You could always do what I do, call customer service and have messaging blocked for your phone.
     
  18. mak10 macrumors regular

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    Feb 6, 2009
    #18
    I guess the problem would lie in the fact that your friend can't just send you a message to that random AOL number and have it appear in your AIM, I think they need to actually respond to the text they get from AOL with your message. So basically that number isn't unique to your phone, which is a problem.

    So your friends would probably still be texting your phone number, thus incurring incoming texts (if they initiate the conversation), but you could always then just on AIM and reply, if you really wanted to.

    and as for STEVESKI07's respond saying it's completely worthless since the person isn't going to know that incoming number... if they know your screen name then it's not as big of a problem as it's pretty obvious that the text is coming from an AIM screen name, but you do have a valid point. My screen name happens to be my first initial and last name, so most people can easily figure out who they are talking to when I send them texts from AIM.

    yeah, if people still send texts directly to your phone number (without using AIM at all) you'll still incur the charges, but at least you could downgrade to the $5/200 messages plan and try to save some money....

    it all depends on how much you use texts... personally I barely use them anymore since all my friends have blackberries with push email, so it's easier (and cheaper) to just email them really quickly.... plus I can write a lot more, attach pictures, etc which is also why I never thought MMS was such a huge deal... but again, different people use different features so what may not work for me may work for you...
     
  19. STEVESKI07 macrumors 68000

    STEVESKI07

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    Washington, DC
    #19
    I think if you were really die hard about this, you could cut down your texting plan, but not eliminate it. It may work well for some people that only text a few people A LOT, because they can get used to it. But for me, I text a lot of people very rarely. It would take a few months for everyone to understand what I'm trying to do and even then they probably wouldn't care or listen when I asked them to send me a text to my screen name. Besides, I barely use AIM anymore after college. The cost of frustration for me and the frustration it would cause to others would cost more then $20/month for me.

    I think this AIM thing is a step in the right direction, but it's not quite there yet. Hopefully other companies will see this and build off of it. I'd like to stick it to AT&T to get my $240/year back just for something that should be included in every cell plan these days.
     
  20. Konz thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 8, 2009
    #20
    Your friends don't know your screen name? They're not capable of learning your screen name and remembering it? lol.... you poor thing, I can only imagine what it must be like to have friends like that :(

    Or you could just pay $5 a month for 200 texts in case that ever happens, and you'd still be saving $15 / month...

    You'd also need to receive 25 "accidental" texts to add up to $5 in the first place.
     
  21. mak10 macrumors regular

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    Feb 6, 2009
    #21
    That's the drawback, they can't initiate the text to your screen name, they can only reply to a text message sent to them from your screen name, so if they wanted to text you (before you texted them from AIM) they would have to text your phone number like normal.
     
  22. STEVESKI07 macrumors 68000

    STEVESKI07

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    Washington, DC
    #22
    No, some of the people I text don't know my screen name because I don't use AIM as often anymore. I think we both live in different periods of our lives. While I was still in school, everyone I really talked to knew my AIM screen name. Now, not so much. Also, another point to bring up here is that you have to always have AIM running in order to receive texts from people.

    Wow I didn't know that. This really needs to come a long ways before it can replace SMS.
     
  23. mak10 macrumors regular

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    Feb 6, 2009
    #23
    No you wont, AIM keeps you logged in even after you close the app, then when the Push notifications come through in 3.0 you'll receive the notifications the same way you would if they were a text message, you'll just open AIM instead of Messages to read them.

    But AIM currently only keeps you logged in for 24 hours after you've closed the actual app, but it does notify you that it signed you off (via text) so you can just open the app again once a day...
     
  24. xileth macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2009
    #24
    error replying to aim

    I have been texting my friends on aim regularly. however, recently after purchasing the iphone and installing the Aim app on the Iphone, my friends do not seem to be able to respond and text back to my aim. both Computer aim and Iphone aim. I find this really usefull because I am overseas and it saves a lot texting. does anyone know what is wrong and how to fix it?
     
  25. solideliquid macrumors 6502

    solideliquid

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    Aug 8, 2008
    #25

    I had that problem as well. My solution was to downgrade my minutes to the 450 plan (with 5000 night and weekends, and free M2M) and upgrade to unlimited SMS. I did this because I chat with people over text far more often than a phone call.

    If I need to make a lengthy phone call I usually leave that for the evening hours so it's part of night and weekends. Most of my family as ATT so when I talk with them it's free anyway.
     

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