GroupMe: Text Messaging for Groups

Text message lists are like private chat rooms

Women using cell phone in store
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GroupMe, a relatively unknown member of the Skype family, is a free group text messaging service that works on desktop computers and just about every mobile phone or tablet that has the app installed. It even works through regular SMS. It's like a private chat room for your group.

Each participant installs the app and creates an account attached to an email address or cellphone number. Then, with their name of choice, each participant can form text message distribution lists or join existing distribution lists.

These lists operate as a form of high-speed discussion forum, sharing text conversations with everyone in the group. Anyone can send a message that is viewable by everyone else in the group. Every text message is preserved until you choose to delete or hide your messages in the future. This way, conversations are stored for any latecomers to see.

The GroupMe app uses web data to send and receive the text messages, but you can also choose to use SMS so you can chat from non-smartphone devices. GroupMe provides alarm notifications that play as sounds or show as icons in your mobile device screen.

Who Should Use GroupMe?

A smartphone travels with people to almost everything they do. Much more reliable than email, text messaging reaches people for "transitory" types of communication that are time-sensitive. By putting group messaging into people's pockets, you can reach people for last-minute and real-time communications. All sorts of groups can benefit from using Group Me including:

  • Co-workers
  • Sports teams
  • College fraternities and clubs
  • Groups of friends
  • Festival and concertgoers
  • Volunteer organizations

GroupMe Is a Discussion Forum

GroupMe is a type of discussion forum. People can join and leave private groups, in much the same way they enter and leave online forums. However, GroupMe goes a step further and offers direct messaging, image sharing, the option to have silent notifications or none at all, GPS location tagging, and no advertising.