Desktop App for Google Messages

It digresses from the thread topic but hey it’s my thread. If I were to consider installing Linux under a VM on a Mac, is there a lightweight distro you would suggest? Is Peppermint OS worth looking at?

Peppermint used to be very popular, don’t know much about it but it should be just fine. If you want something marketed more for new Linux users Zorin OS Lite works well.

Xubuntu and Lubuntu are other good choices for something lightweight.

If you specifically want to try Waydroid you need Wayland. So a GNOME desktop such as Ubuntu 21.04 or newer, Fedora 34+, Debian 11.

Not exactly what you’re looking for, but this is why I use Google Voice rather than my RW number.

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Hi @maniac,

Thanks for chiming in. It’s true that Google Voice can be used on multiple devices and on an Android phone, it’s extremely well integrated for calling. Text messaging, however, less so.

Google, no longer forwards text messages to one’s “real” phone number, so one must now use the GV app on the phone for text messaging. Also, to the best of my knowledge, Google Voice lacks a desktop app requiring one use a web browser on a computer (no different from Google’s Messages for Web).

Google Voice does have the advantage of working on devices other than one’s phone without the need to mirror the phone. The reality is short of Republic/DISH coding a new app to replace Anywhere for forthcoming new plans, there is nothing that would be exactly what I’m looking for. :frowning_face: But, I aim to come as close as I’m able.

Yes, correct on all points. Also, since GV no longer integrates with hangouts, it’s no longer available within gmail either :frowning:

I used to use Anywhere all the time. Though I never installed it on my phone as I liked Google Messages better. This approach did mean that I had to read things on both platforms and nothing I entered on the Computer ever showed up on the phone. I liked that the computer directly connected to the Republic servers though. However, I grew frustrated as Anywhere stopped synchronizing my contacts properly and it would completely ignore messages from some parties (particularly my wife, which didn’t go over well).

Rolandh’s comment of, isn’t entirely true in those respects, at least recently for me:

The elegance of Anywhere is that its just another endpoint connected directly to the server with no need to deal with potential flakiness introduced by mirroring the phone.

I switched to Google Messages. It functions differently and requires the device (your phone) to be active and it synchronizes with the phone. This makes everything consistent, that’s nice. You can have multiple devices (I put it on my home, work and laptop computers, as well as my Tablet). All function fine, but it does get cumbersome and there is something about which might be in control, but I forget the details. The main problem I have with Messages is that it relies on the phone and sometimes apparently my Moto X4 is “asleep” and it can’t seem to communicate properly. When I send a text on the computer it can timeout (a minute later and I never notice) and never send a message. If I grab my phone and look at it, then resend it will work. Argh.

What I have not seen mentioned is that while Messages on the computer (windows) does function as a Web App when you first connect it there is an option to “Install” the application. Which creates a link and makes an “Application”. This is just Google Chrome without any browser window. So it looks like an App, it runs like an App and I like it. Some people complained about not starting up automatically, which is solved simply by placing a link in your Start Menu/Startup folder. So other than the timeout issue with the phone communication it works great, on Windows at least. On Android it’s a native app. No idea on a Mac. I believe this “native app” look is called a PWA (Progressive Web App):
Wikipedia - Progressive web application

Seems like a lot less work than the Nativefier, or other alternatives. One click and I was done.

Yes, one can indeed create a Chrome app as you describe. To the best of my knowledge, however, Chrome apps do not run without Google Chrome being on one’s device.

A Nativefier “native app” will run with or without Google Chrome on the device. It’s really a matter of preference, there’s no right or wrong way. Nor, must one use Nativefier themselves though some geeks like me do these things for fun. :clown_face: Anyway, links to “native apps” created with Nativefier by fellow Republic members are in the top post.

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I believe we need to find a messaging app for the PC that works when the phone doesn’t work. Perhaps Amazon has something that will help in this situation: How to Send Text Messages with Alexa : HelloTech How

If there’s a company that raises more privacy concerns than Google, it would be Amazon. It’s also unclear to me this would work with one’s phone turned off since the Alexa app plays a prominent role.

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I know you can make calls with Alexa when the phone is off. Amazon spoofs your cell number so it looks like the call is coming from your cell. I believe the mother ship handles the call.

How would this be possible?

Sending, sure maybe, although number spoofing for calls is far easier than for texts.

Inbound, I don’t see how. An inbound text is routed to your carrier for delivery. Unless you have a connection to the carrier infrastructure there is no way to get it other than once it is delivered to the device. If the device isn’t working, well, you can’t connect to it to get the message. Anywhere worked because it connected to the Republic servers and was just like another phone. Any 3rd party solution can’t do that and therefore can’t possible support inbound messages, to your actual cell number, unless it can reach the phone.

You make a good point. Still, I’ve been told other cell services can now receive WIFI calls when cell service isn’t available and it has long been possible to make WIFI calls from a PC . I hope this can be worked out for messages too.

These aren’t parrallels. Wifi calls from the phone are set-up by the carrier, using the phone’s IMS settings and connect to the carrier back-end.

Outbound calls from a PC are well, compeltely unrelated. Inbound calls to your number would either need to be accomplished with a SIP connection to the carrier server or a carrier service like simultaneous rings.

There really isn’t anything to work out. For My Choice Phones Republic would have to open its messaging infrastructure and then a developer would have to be interested in connecting to a soon to be legacy, and only shrinking user base, in order for something to happen. On the new phones it isn’t clear to me if DISH will have its own messaging infrastructure or will leverage the carrier infrastructure, but in either case it seems to me that the chances of a company like DISH or the cellular parter opening their messaging infrastructure to a 3rd party, is close to none.

At any rate, this isn’t a matter of finding a 3rd party app that can work with the phone off. Such a thing doesn’t exist. If that’s a requirement then something like Google Voice would need to be used so that you’re not actually using your cell number.

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