POWOW Android Text Messaging App Review

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of POWOW Messenger for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

POWOW for Android phones is a free feature rich text messaging app by Handmark.  This app is meant as a replacement for the stock Android text messaging management application on your phone.  Some notable features that POWOW is equipped with includes, among others:

  • Robust group messaging features, such as the ability to send one text message to a specific group of people, regardless of what provider they use.
  • PopUp Notifications, which lets you see text messages as they come in without having to open POWOW directly.  So if you’re browsing the web, the text message will come up, allowing you to reply/ignore/delete/call the person right there.
  • Easy import of contacts/pics from Facebook, Twitter, and others
  • Ability to set filters for contacts
  • Voice to text for the ever humorous talking “text” conversations… on a phone…  Am I the only one that finds it funny when people do this, particularly when the other person texts right back and the conversation continues at a relatively quick pace with the back and forths?
  • Call shortcuts, which allow you to easily call someone who’s texted you with a single click.
  • The ability to blacklist senders
  • The ability to mute notifications from someone, so you’ll still receive their message, but won’t be notified when it arrives.

So it’s a quite feature rich text messaging app.  For me the thing that sets POWOW apart from other text messaging apps I’ve used is how well it integrates with my phone in terms of ease of accessing and managing text messages without needing to jump through hoops.  For instance, instead of exiting whatever app I’m currently using to check what some text message that just came in says, it just pops up for me to look at and do whatever with, even call the person with just a click.  I can also easily manage groups and create filters for looking at different sets of text messages, such as creating filters for Family, Business, etc.

So basically, a lot of the features of POWOW are integrated in such a way as to cut steps out in typical texting interactions.  Not much negative to say here; it won’t make you toast or scratch your back, but in my limited use thus far (couple day’s worth), it seems to do just about everything one would want while texting and I haven’t encountered any bugs yet; also, it’s free, so what’s not to like?

If you want to give it a try, you can go download the POWOW Android app here: POWOW Messenger for Android


Bonus Facts:

  • A Native American pow wow gets its name from the Narragansett word ‘powwaw’, which in English means “spiritual leader”.
  • Over 6 trillion text messages were sent in 2010.  This number increased to 8 trillion in 2011 and the numbers are expected to keep rising in 2012.  The 2011 numbers equate to about 1100 text messages per person on the planet.
  • Text messaging still pales in comparison to the number of emails sent per year, which was estimated at about 100 trillion emails in 2011 (remember a decade or so ago when certain politicians in the U.S. wanted to put a 1 cent tax per email?… ya bet they’re kicking themselves about not being able to get that piece of legislation through).
  • Text messages are usually sent using Short Message Service (SMS) or Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS) when including multimedia like pictures or videos.  SMS messages themselves typically consist of 140-190 bytes each of data (depending on provider implementation).  This means that the average cost per text (when not on some plan) of 20 cents equates to about $1300 per megabyte of data transferred.  To put this in perspective, a one minute phone conversation uses on average about the same amount of data as 600 text messages ($120 worth without a plan).  This is made even more ridiculous given that sending texts thus actually saves cell phone providers significant money in infrastructure costs over the data needed for phone conversations.
  • Data plans can be purchased from most providers for several gigabytes of transfer per month for under $50.  In contrast, 3 GB’s (3,221,225,472 bytes) of data transfer via text messages would cost you about $4 million at .20 cents per text.  Even on a plan at say 1000 texts for $20, that’s a cost of 2 cents per text, so for 3GB of transfer at that rate, would be about $400,000.  Given that the top cellphone providers have a virtual monopoly and they can pretty well set the price of text messaging as they please and there’s nothing people can do about it, this isn’t likely to change anytime soon.  In fact, the cost per text has actually risen steadily for about four years in a row, resulting in allegations of collusion amongst the major cell phone providers.
  • Surprisingly the SMS protocol does not guarantee delivery of messages.  What this means is that any text message you send isn’t actually guaranteed to get to the recipient.  While some implementations of the protocol do provide means of notifying you if the message wasn’t received, many don’t.   It’s estimated that around 1%-5% of text messages sent are not every delivered.
  • In the United States, 86% of the time people are using the internet on their mobile device, they are also watching TV.  The average American smartphone user also spends about 2.7 hours per day socializing on their phone.
  • The top 5 countries in the world with the most currently active cell phones are:
    • China: 906.8 million phones
    • India: 851.7 million phones
    • U.S. 302.9 million phones
    • Russia 220.6 million phones
    • Brazil: 217.3 million phones


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