Handcent Messaging App for Android
Handcent SMS is one of the best third party SMS applications for Android. If you’re bored with the built in application on your device, you should definitely check Handcent out since the list of features on this one is endless.
We’ll get straight down to the huge list of things you can do with Handcent. First off, privacy. The default android messaging app does not have any sort of privacy lock on it and the only way you can protect your messages is by locking the whole phone at the lockscreen. Handcent allows you to lock the messaging application alone or if you have a Handcent online account (which is free) you can lock individual message threads aswell. Even if you open your messages through another application, as long as privacy settings are configured in handcent, the same settings will apply to every messaging application even the default one.
You can schedule messages with handcent to send them later on, another thing the basic android application lacks. You can enable pop up notifications for your SMS’ instead of a notification in the status bar alone, customize the UI with countless themes on the Android market, change individual thread layouts to depict an iPhone or maybe HTC Sense or even change the colors of the speech bubbles in a thread!
Another cool feature, is that you can backup your messages to your Handcent online account with the app. This is specially useful if you change ROMS on your device or accidentaly reset it so that you never loose your important messages and can just restore them from backup again. The app can be improved upon with plug-ins aswell, such as the Locator plug-in which lets you locate where your contacts are sending messages from through GPS, which could definitely lead to some surprising results.
Handcent has a lot of features you wouldn’t find on your basic android app and once you get used to it, you won’t be going back to the basic SMS app. There is however one downside to Handcent, the user interface is quite old fashioned and dull. The app is very productive and I love it, but they could really improve the UI a lot since it might put off some people. For the time being you can go ahead and download a plug-in to correct that for now such as the one below.