Apple launched iOS 16 with a lot of fanfare this week, and it will collide with Android 13. Both companies have outfitted their latest offerings with all the cleverness of machine learning you can imagine. It comes with improved dictation, useful tools for converting images to text, and more. But there’s one thing missing in iOS, and it’s taken for granted by Android’s side of things. You cannot use iMessage to schedule texts. Instead, you’ll rely on a workaround that makes you set up an automatic calendar and shortcut.
As software engineer Caleb Smith shared on Twitter, you need to jump through some hoops to get a somewhat workable solution to scheduling messages. First, you need to create a new calendar in the pre-installed calendar app, called something like “Shipped Messages”. Next, you need to head over to the Shortcuts app and create a new workflow for sending delayed messages.
Shortcuts can be compared to a built-in and less advanced version of the Android Tasker automation app (which we recommend). To dive into how to create the shortcut, check out Smith’s detailed instructions.
Once that’s all set up, the process of scheduling a message is still exactly the same. You must tell Siri to send a late message, along with what that message is supposed to be, who you’re sending, and on what date. The solution does not allow you to specify different times. Instead, you choose your preferred time period which will be used for your messages on a particular day.
Let’s compare this complex solution with what we have on Android. The pre-installed Google Messages app that you can find on the Google Pixel 6 and Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, among many others, allows you to schedule messages out of the box. Type your message as you normally would, long press the send button, choose a preset time or create your own. Or, if scheduling messages is not that important to you, you can choose any SMS app with the set of features you prefer. This is the beauty of Android, after all.
Now, you might think that message scheduling is an exceptional case that you would never consider using. However, once you have the feature as a built-in option, you’ll learn to appreciate it. If you want to share some funny memes or TikToks with your friends in the middle of the night, you can schedule your posts instead of waking them up at night. Or, you might have an idea over the weekend and want to share it with a colleague without interrupting their free time. Instead of keeping that idea until Monday, schedule a message and forget all about it until they respond later. There’s a reason that apps like Telegram and Slack have been letting you schedule messages for quite some time now.
Oddly enough, Apple didn’t offer an option like this, however, here we go. Perhaps the anti-consumer moves from a company that would rather ask people to buy an iPhone for their family members than enable RCS chat to make life easier for everyone shouldn’t surprise us shouldn’t have surprised us.
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