While the highly anticipated launch of Android 4.4 and the Nexus 5 was met with a generally positive response, not all changes have been met with open arms. Those who do not share Google’s vision of a unified messaging app now have a way out with the 8sms messing app that has just been updated on Google Play Store.
One of the biggest, and probably one of the most controversial, changes that can be found on Google’s two newest hit products is the merging of SMS functionality in its Google+ Hangouts app. Although this feature was actually already pre-announced at Google’s “Morning with Google+” event days before the release, the Nexus 5, being the first to have Android 4.4 installed, is the first to have that feature as the default. That may be well and good for some users, but the problem at the moment is that Google is, in a way, forcing this new integration by completely removing the default messaging app on the Nexus 5.
Those who already own a Nexus 5, or those who are worried about this change coming from Android 4.4, or even those who just enjoy the simplicity of the previously default messaging app have their work cut out for them. XDA senior member bengfan has an app called 8sms that brings back a bit of that old-style goodness. The app is taken from the messaging app found in Android 4.3 via CyanogenMod 10.2 and incorporates some interesting features in addition to the basic default SMS app functionality, including quick reply popups, emoji support, a dark theme, and gesture-based templates.
The app is freely available for any Android device running Android 4.1 or higher. However, 8sms has also now been updated to be compatible with Android 4.4 and the Nexus 5. Just remember that Android 4.4 has changed the rules slightly when it comes to SMS apps so that only one app will be able to actually receive and send messages. The rest will simply be notified that a message has been received.