Newest Review: ... what's more it is obviously all for free. Though if you wish to send a text message else where internationally, there will be a flat fe... more
Free SMS - Brilliant!
Member Name: blonde_girl774
Advantages: Easy to use, Free to use, Unlimited Text Messages.
Disadvantages: Delay in sending text messages at busy periods.
As an outgoing student, and one that likes a drink as well, my phone bill has a tendency to be a little on the large side! Despite the fact that I get 500 free text messages a month with my current contract they never seem to stretch far enough – I think I just send a lot of useless text messages if I’m honest, last night my friend text me from her car outside asking me to open the front door as it was raining and I replied “ok!” See what I mean? So now, whenever I’m near a computer or at home I always try to send my text messages off the internet in an attempt to save money. The majority of sites that are connected to mobiles do offer limited free text messages but the only site that I know of that offers unlimited sending is Cardboard Fish SMS.
The site itself is a rather bright orange colour with a turquoise background that upon first glance in a morning may require you to wear sun glasses. The main feature offered by the site is the ability to send unlimited text messages which is an absolute godsend for anyone out there who likes to text. The site profits from the fact that with each message you send a pop up window will open on your computer, advertisers pay the site for their website or information to pop up and hence appeal to the consumer.
Sending a Text Message
Step 1 - On the home page you’ll see a white box in the centre of the page which instructs you to type in the phone number and also your message. It gives you 137 characters to write which is slightly less than some phones but more than others so quite an average amount of text can be sent.
Step 2 - Once you’ve completed that you’ll see the black “send sms” button directly below which will take you to the next page which shows you your message again and asks you to tick a small box to say you agree not to use any software to block pop ups as this is how the site makes its money.
Step 3 - Once you’ve ticked that box merely press the “send” button again which is directly below the tick box. On the third page you’ll be asked to verify a pin number by basically typing in a given 4 digit number to ensure that you’re not merely a computer sending out spam text messages.
Step 4 – Once you’ve typed the 4 digits in press the “send” button once again and you’ll be taken to a new page that informs you your message is sending. After about 10 seconds you’ll reach the final page which informs you that your message is sent.
One of the most useful features on the site is the confirmation option, once you’ve sent your message you can click to check it’s been delivered. If the message hasn’t been sent you’ll see a red box with “undelivered” wrote in it and once the phone has received the message it will be replaced with a green “delivered” box. I find this particularly helpful as you can see that the message has been sent and reached the phone. The other feature that can be used in conjunction with this is the replies option which allows people to reply directly to the site, any replies you have received will be saved in the “replies” option for the whole time you remain on the computer – of course once you turn the computer off the memory will be wiped but you are given a “reply code” to allow you to check for replies at a later date.
The system status option allows you to check that the site is functioning properly and this is where the main disadvantage to the site comes in. Obviously a lot of people want to send free text messages and therefore the site becomes too busy and when you try to send a message you’ll be informed that the site is too busy and given a time (between 1 and 10 minutes) to try again. A green box on the system status page indicates that the site is functioning and it’s fine to send a message whereas a red box will inform you that the site is experiencing too much traffic and therefore not able to send any more messages at present.
The site offers the option to have a VIP account which means you pay for the ability to be able to send text messages whenever you want without being told the site is too busy, basically VIP members get priority over other members. Other advantages include the fact that you can send longer messages, messages to multiple numbers at once and store an address book on the site. If you choose this option then it’s free to sign up and there’s no monthly fee but each SMS will cost you 5p. At the end of the day it’s cheaper than sending a text off your phone.
In addition to text messages the site also offers Cardboard Fish email as well which can be accessed from the main site using the options along the top of the page. It’s very similar to any other email system such as yahoo or hotmail and I have to admit that I’ve never used it so can’t really comment. My friend has an account with them and hasn’t had any problems with it at all and found it very user friendly also. The thing that does appeal to me about their email system is that you have the option to cancel your account if you no longer need it, I always worry on hotmail as I’ve had a couple of accounts with them for various things and then just left them.
As with most email servers and similar sites to Cardboard Fish there’s a chat service offered enabling you to chat with other users of the site and also message boards as well. The last service offered by the site is Cardboard Fish search which is, you’ve guessed it, a search engine! Simply enter your search term, click “search” and find yourself presented with a list of possible links, easy peasy!
The site is really easy to use and although the main feature of this article is the SMS service the site also has several other options which make it even better. With regard to the SMS system it’s really easy to use and best of all it’s free, what more could you want? The only problem I have with it is that, as discussed above, sometimes due to so many people using the site there is a delay in sending of texts of up to 10 minutes. But at the end of the day it’s free and unlimited – 4 stars from me!
Summary: A free and unlimited text messaging service.