Gmail on SMS in Kenya [How To]

Originally posted on 2012-07-18T14:11:00Z at

Gmail has unveiled a new mobile phone feature for its users in Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria. This allows users to access Google's Gmail directly on their phones, even if the phone has no internet connection.
Gmail on Mobile SMS

How to Start Using Gmail on SMS

First off, there are some conditions you need to meet:
  • You must be from Kenya, Ghana or Nigeria
  • Your Gmail account must end with “” e.g. [email protected]
  • You must be using one of these mobile operators:
    • Kenya - Safaricom, Airtel, Orange, and Yu
    • Ghana - Airtel, MTN, Tigo, and Vodafone
    • Nigeria - Airtel, Etisalat, Glo, MTN, Starcomms, and Visafone
If you meet the meet the criteria above, as do nearly all Kenyans on Gmail, then Gmail on SMS should work for you.

Setting Up Gmail-to-SMS for your email

Step 1: Open your Account Settings Page

Click this click Account Settings or go to the address:
Proceed to log in with your username (or email) and password. You should then be taken to your account Settings page.

Step 2: Open the Phone and SMS section

On your Google account page there should be “Open SMS settings” option as in the image below.
Click on Open SMS Setting s to be taken to the Phone and SMS section

Step 3: Add a phone Number to your account

Click on the Add Phone Number, you’ll get a pop up dialogue with your country and already prefixed with your country code e.g. Kenya +254, like in the image below.
Proceed to enter your number (without the preceding 0) e.g. if your number is 0722123123 then you should enter it as +254722123123. Click on Send Code for a verification code to be sent directly to phone. The code (a number) should be sent to your phone e.g. 834564, proceed to enter it in the next dialog box that appears, as this verifies your phone.

Step 4: Set your Notification Preference

On the Phone and SMS section, you should select the option for “Forward my incoming email messages” as this forwards all your emails directly to your phone. Follow the steps above and you should be good to go.