How To Change Your Default SMS App In Android 4.4 KitKat [Tip]


Now that Hangouts has SMS integration, it’s the default SMS client in Android 4.4 KitKat, which means traditional text messages and instant messages are now all thrown in together. But if you don’t like it like this, there is a way you can change it.


Firstly, you’ll need to download a new SMS client. Google Play offers a wide selection of them — such as Go SMS, Textra SMS, Handcent SMS, and 8sms — so check them out a decide which is best for you. Personally, I like 8sms, which is much like Android’s old Messages app but with CyanogenMod tweaks and features built-in.


Once you have your SMS client installed, follow the steps below:

  1. Open up the Settings app, then tap “More…
  2. Tap “Default SMS app” and then select your client of choice


It’s that simple. You’ll now receive new SMS messages through this client — not Hangouts — and when you choose to text someone from within the People app, it’ll load your client of choice automatically. If after a while you decide you don’t like the new app, simply repeat the process above.

**8sms is an adaptation of the stock SMS app from Android 4.3 and earlier**


Notable features of 8sms

  • Notification pop-ups
  • Quick reply
  • Gesture based templates
  • Emoji support
  • Optional dark theme

Install this app if you want to use features from the latest Android messaging app without having to wait for a full phone software update.


Whilst 8sms is a replacement for the messaging app that came with your phone, it is actually an add-on application only.

Please do not disable or remove the messaging app that came with your phone as that is still required to receive sms and mms messages.

88sms works best if you turn off notifications for the messaging app that came with your phone. Then you won’t get two sets of notifications.

Download 8sms from Google Play Store ==> click here to download

7 comments on “How To Change Your Default SMS App In Android 4.4 KitKat [Tip]

  1. I have a big problem with a Moto G phone. My girlfriend deleted her default texting app, and I’ve tried everything to get her another one. I’ve tried almost a dozen different apps. I’ve changed each to the default program. Every single one of them either black-screens or tells me it just can’t send messages. The Motorola website is not helpful. It basically says, “Are you sure you have signal? Really? Totally sure? Alright then. We don’t believe you, but whatever.” Have you ever heard of this problem? Is there anything that can be done? Someone on the net said that I had to uninstall Hangouts, so I did that. But that’s about the only advice I’ve found, and it didn’t work.

  2. Hi there. Thanks for getting back to me. I’ve never used one of these forums before and didn’t know if anyone would actually reply. She thinks she deleted it. She can’t really be sure because it was all by accident. She was having trouble sending a text, hitting resend over and over, when she tried to delete that text and wound up, she thinks, deleting the program. I couldn’t find it among her installed apps. I only found Hangouts, which wasn’t what she was using.

    • Try this man, If you are not rooted, one way to renable apps is to go to Settings > Apps > Disabled > Reset app preferences (under the menu button in the top right).

  3. First off, awesome. That’s a big step in the right direction. The program was among the disabled apps. But now there’s another problem. I can now send text messages, but it isn’t receiving them! On a side note, do you know if there is there any way to get the icon back onto the row of apps at the bottom of the phone? That is, where it has the blue telephone, the google chrome, the settings and the camera icons?

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