How to Send Automatic Replies to SMS on Android

By | December 17, 2021

If you’re usually quick to respond to people’s texts, you might be worried that you haven’t responded for a while. Luckily, it’s easy to set up automatic text replies on Android.

Using some apps, you can send automatic responses to people who try to contact you while you are driving, in a meeting, or busy. Here’s how to auto-reply to SMS on Android.

Automatically Responds While Driving With Android Auto

If you’re primarily interested in automatic responses while driving, Android Auto lets you respond to texts with a single tap. This applies whether your car has an Android Auto compatible unit or you use the Android Auto app on your phone.

To set up automatic text response in Android Auto, first open the app. Swipe out the left sidebar and select Settings. Under section Notifications, tap Auto reply. Here, you can customize the text that appears when you respond to messages automatically.

Make sure you activate Show message notifications and/or Show group message notifications. Otherwise, you won’t know when the message comes in and you won’t be able to reply automatically.

Now, when you see an incoming notification for a message, you can hit the auto-response field to send your automated message with one quick tap. Plus, it works for all Android-supported messaging apps (like WhatsApp and Telegram), not just SMS. While not fully automated, it is a safer way to respond on the road when needed.

Use the App SMS Auto Reply Text Message / SMS Autoresponder

The above is great for driving, but there’s a lot more you can do to auto-reply to texts on Android. One of the best apps for this job is SMS Auto Reply Text Message, which offers most of its features for free.

Get Started With SMS Auto Reply Text Message

After installing the app, you can browse the basic overview and start creating your own auto-response rules. Tap Add/Edit on the home screen to get started.

At the top, you will see templates Busy selected by default. You can tap this to change it to others like Driving, Meeting, or Movie. Each has its own preset message, which you can edit in the field Message.

If you want to create a new response template, tap the icon Plus in the top right and give it a name. Before proceeding, make sure you select SMS under Select channel to reply to so that respondents work on text messages.

Message For Specific Contact

Next, you can choose to send personalized messages to specific contacts. This allows you to leave more private notes for people you know or expect messages from, for example.

Tap the icon Pencil next to Personalized List to select the contact or contact group that a particular message should visit. After you select a contact, type a message for them.

You will also see the field Don’t Reply List. This allows you to specify numbers that you don’t want to automatically reply to. For example, you can exclude automated numbers such as bank alerts.

When you’re done, tap Save to save your changes to the current template.

Setting Time Period For Response

Next, you want to set the time for the auto attendant to run. choose Set Time on the editing page or homepage to configure it.

Use field from and To at the top of the screen to set when the service should be active. From there, you have three options for how the response works:

  • choose Run by Time to activate the responder during the selected time each day.
  • Run by Date will respond to messages within the time period you choose, during the date period you choose.
  • choose Run by Week Days to use respondents for your selected time period only on certain days of the week. Check the box Repeat Weekly if you want to run it the same way in the coming weeks.

Tap Save and you will go to screen On/Off. Here, the app will tell you that due to Android limitations, it only works with SMS text messages. This means it’s not as compatible with missed calls and MMS as it used to be.

Toggle Automatic Response

On page Turn ON/OFF, you’ll see all the auto-response rules you created. If you want to create different profiles for different times or groups of people, you can repeat the steps above to set up as many rules as you want.

To finally enable automatic responses, activate the slider next to the rule. When you do this, the app will ask you to enable notification access so it knows when you get a text message. It also asks you to disable battery optimization and allows unlimited data access so that it can run properly.

This is a lot of permission to grant, but it is required for the app to work as intended.

While the rule is running, you’ll see it highlighted in blue on this page.

Auto Answer Settings and Other Features

That’s all you need to get started with SMS Auto Reply. This service has a few extras that you should be aware of.

After the rule takes effect, tap Reports on the home screen to view information about what messages were sent while the profile was active. On the left sidebar, you can use tools Backup to save your configuration to Google Drive.

Also in this sidebar you will find the menu Settings worth checking out. For example, enable Send only one reply and the app will not respond to multiple messages from the same person within a certain period of time. Under Reply rules, you can also choose to only respond to contacts, non-contacts, or personalized lists.

You can also choose to ignore short numbers, which is a good idea since most automated messages come from short code numbers.

Auto Reply offers some in-app purchases to unlock more features. This includes automatic responses to messages from Facebook and WhatsApp, setting an alarm when a rule expires, and adding a default status. It costs $4.49 for everything (including ad removal), which is beneficial if you use the service frequently.

Many Auto Response Options With IFTTT

If you don’t like the solution above for some reason, you can always create your own automated response with IFTTT.

First, sign up for IFTTT and activate Android SMS service by installing the app on your Android phone. From there, you can use Android text messages as triggers and actions for new applets.

You are only limited by your creativity here. For example, you can use New SMS received matches search to capture messages containing certain words. The action can then send an SMS in response to let them know that you are unavailable.

Automatic Reply to SMS Made Easy

We’ve looked at several ways to send auto-response texts on Android. Whether you just want an easy way to let people know you’re driving or want to dive into the full setup with multiple profiles, you won’t have to leave anyone waiting for an answer again.