1. Computing

Free Text Messaging: Review of SMS Service txtDrop.com

Simple, easy-to-use service a valuable tool for free text messaging via the Web

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating

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txtDrop.com

txtDrop.com

Image © txtDrop.com
Unlike other free text messaging services like Peekamo or mjoy that just allow you to send texts for free from your cell phone’s mobile Web, txtDrop.com simply does one thing and does it well: allows you to send free text messages from the Web to a cell phone for free.

The Web-based and advertising-supported txtDrop.com service isn’t useful, though, unless you’re at your computer and on the Web. While the service is designed to be used from your computer, you could also use it from the mobile Web on your cell phone.
Its simple, easy-to-use and fast-loading Web site just asks you for the cell phone number you’re texting, the message you want to send and your e-mail address. Your e-mail is requested for replies.

The txtDrop.com character limit, though, is only 120 rather than the typical 160 characters.

In our testing of this free text messaging service, a message was sent via the Web and received to our cell phone in about six seconds. In our testing, a reply message was received by our e-mail address within about 15 seconds.

While both tests worked successfully, a repeat test sent the same text message to our test cell phone in duplicate. In general, though, we were pleased with the simplicity of the service and its results.

As of May 24, 2009, txtDrop.com reported on its Web site that its users have sent 4,856,397 from its service. It was launched in Sept. 2005 as one of the “earliest free text messaging services on the Internet,” according to txtDrop.com.

The service claims to have among the “best carrier auto-detection functionality on the Web”. The service says it is compatible with Verizon Wireless, AT&T (formerly Cingular Wireless), Sprint Nextel, T-Mobile, Alltel, Cellular One, Fido, Rogers Wireless, Bell Canada, Dobson, Unicell, Boost Mobile, Cellular South, Edge Wireless, Metro PCS, Suncom, Virgin Mobile, Centennial Wireless and more.
The service also offers a dashboard widget for Windows and Macintosh users to send text messages for free from the desktop of your computer. For privacy, txtDrop.com allows users to block their cell phone number from receiving text messages using this service. A confirmation code is required to opt out.

One potential vulnerability with txtDrop.com is that it merely asks its users in its legal policy not to use the service for “spam, unsolicited texts or harassing messages”. The service would be improved by helping to prevent spam using the requirement of technology such as a CAPTCHA so human users must enter a dynamic code in order to proceed.

The service does promise not to sell or share any information collected through its Web site or desktop widgets. The txtDrop.com service also offers RingerDrop.com for users to send free ringtones via the Web to other cell phones.

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