Chat Apps

How To: Send Robocalls, Spammers & Unknown Callers on Your iPhone Directly to Voicemail

Does your iPhone always ring off the hook, with each call nothing more than a robocall, spammer, or scammer? It's not just you. Auto-dialing systems and phone scams are a growing issue that anyone with a phone number is likely experiencing throughout the United States. But Apple has added a super simple way to combat these calls in iOS 13, a feature we recommend everyone turn on.

How To: Change the Notification Sound & Call Ringtone in Facebook Messenger

When you hear a "ding" on your phone, chances are it's a new notification for Facebook Messenger, and it could be a fairly painful sound depending on how loud your volume's set. Thankfully, you aren't stuck with this singular alert option, so if you're unhappy with both this sound and the call ringtone, you can change it to something else — something less distressing.

How To: Hide Contact Photos from Your Apple Messages List & Conversations to Declutter the Interface

The Messages app on iOS features contact photos for every one of your conversations — including group chats. Even if you don't have a picture for a specific contact, their initials will appear instead. For non-contacts, a generic profile avatar appears. These give threads a bit of flare, but if you're looking for extra privacy or don't enjoy the look, you can easily hide those images and icons.

How To: Mute or Leave Group Chats in WhatsApp, So You Never Get Annoyed by Notifications

Group chats on WhatsApp are great for getting your friends all in one place, but the bigger the group, the more notifications you'll probably get. Needless to say, it can get annoying real quick. You can mute notifications for all your conversations, but that's not practical if some are important. However, there is an option to mute group chats themselves and even leave them when needed.

How To: Use Telegram's GIF & Sticker Search to Find a Perfect Reaction for a Chat

Remember trying to express yourself over the 160-character limit on SMS texts? We've come a long way since then, and messaging services have nearly taken over with emoji, chat effects, custom interface colors, and other personalizations. Necessities for messages these days include GIFs and stickers, and Telegram makes it easy to find those perfect reactions for any moment.

How To: Set & Remove Nicknames in Facebook Messenger Chats for More Personalized Conversations

For the most part, people use real names on Facebook. That's all fine and well for keeping tabs on those you know, but it can make friendly Messenger chats feel oddly formal. Skirt around this stiffness by giving your friends nicknames in Messenger for Android and iOS, so your conversations reflect the way you and your friends communicate in real life.

How To: Facebook's Adding a Way to Watch Videos Together with Friends Around the Globe Using Messenger

For all its faults, you can't say that Facebook hasn't been instrumental in connecting friends and family together, no matter where in the world everyone is. That's why one of its upcoming features — watching videos together with Facebook friends directly in Messenger — is so novel. It's just another example of the internet bridging gaps that couldn't be bridged just a short while ago.

How To: Enable Dark Mode in Telegram for More Comfortable Late-Night Messaging

Whether gabbing via cloud chat or Secret Chat, there's no denying that private messaging is one of Telegram's strengths. Communications can often occur at nsight, where Telegram's default bright white theme can be a bit uncomfortable to use, but Telegram supports dark mode on Android and iOS — with a few different themes to match any late-night chatting style.

How To: Disable Amber, Emergency, Public Safety & Other Government Alerts on Your iPhone for Some Peace & Quiet

No, you should probably not turn off Amber, emergency, and public safety alerts on your iPhone. These government notifications are used to warn you about imminent natural disasters, active shooters, and terrorist attacks. More frequently, they ask for your help with child abductions. The alerts save lives, but it's still up to you whether you want to get them or not.

How To: Delete Telegram Messages & Whole Conversations for Everyone in the Chat

If you're looking to keep your conversations private, look no further than Telegram. Its cloud-based chats are secure and its optional end-to-end encrypted chats even more so, but you can't really prevent someone in the conversation from sharing your messages. However, you can lessen that chance by taking back your messages, deleting them for both you and the other end of the discussion.

How To: Change the Chat Color in Messenger Threads to Personalize a Conversation

Blue has defined Facebook's color scheme since its inception. Both Facebook's main app and Messenger theme are blue, which means your chat bubbles, like emoji, and menu bar items are also. While certainly a satisfying color for chat, you may get sick of it after a while, especially when it's in every thread. Luckily, Facebook lets you customize the color of individual Messenger chats.

How To: Disable Read Receipts in WhatsApp So Nobody Can See Those Blue Check Marks in Chats

WhatsApp, like other popular messengers on iOS and Android, shows when recipients have read your sent messages with a blue double check mark indicator. On the flip side, for those of you who are bad at replying promptly or don't feel like replying at all, you can disable "read receipts" so the senders won't know when or if you even read their messages.

How To: Stop Audio Messages from Self-Destructing in iMessage So You Can Keep Them Forever

Apple has several ways for you to communicate in the Messages app aside from texting — and that includes audio messages. You can send a voice recording via iMessage by long-pressing the microphone icon just right of the input field and speaking. However, by default, these audio messages self-destruct after two minutes, which isn't good if you want them archived.

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