How can we improve the Windows platform?

SMS Access API

Please provide an API that provides access to the texts to allow developers to implement an application to enable scenarios such as reading or archiving SMS messages.

10,076 votes
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    Marco MuraMarco Mura shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    Henry BoehlertHenry Boehlert shared a merged idea: SMS Access API  ·   · 
    AnonymousAnonymous shared a merged idea: open sms up to create, read, or delete sms.  ·   · 

    Currently, the platform provides a number of SMS Access from a system eventing perspective (as of Windows Phone 8.1), and Windows Phone supports sms backup/restore for consumers as part of the base OS (Settings → Backup). What we don’t provide is a backup API.

    Using SMS events: Check out the Build 2014 session ( or MSDN docs on background tasks (

    Although the capabilities are there from a consumer perspective (the core ask for the suggestion), I’m marking this as ‘Under Review’ for the API perspective. The team is aware of the ask and it is something that is being considered.


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      • social developersocial developer commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Does Nadella know why there are no WP developers? Because you guys treat us with such contempt. Just look at all the issues here...

        Sort this out and WP would be the best thing out there.

      • Terry BittnerTerry Bittner commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        This is an ABSOLUTE necessity for many of us. We need to be able to programmatically receive a copy of the SMS message so we can react to it's content if it's for our application. I have a fantastic idea for an app that will be very valuable world wide and I'm also using one of MS web services to provide the desired functionality. I need to provide two way SMS messaging in order for the app to be truly successful.

      • Andrey KalinovskiyAndrey Kalinovskiy commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Situation with SMS API looks like 'there are two opinions - one is my and another one is incorrect'. A lot of developers has strong arguments why this feature is important to be implemented but MS is still not ready for the dialog". So, what are the goals of uservoice site?

      • ZikZik commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        When I read the responses from the Microsoft rep, it's clear to me that Microsoft just doesn't get it. It's unfortunate, but it appears that the people who are making product capability decisions for Windows Phone, are oftentimes clueless about how people want to use their phones. For Cliff to be claiming that the requested feature in this thread is largely satisfied from a consumer level by the backup to OneDrive feature, as currently implemented is ludicrous.

        Cliff, what we want is the ability to EXPORT our SMS data in unencrypted format to a file system that we have access to. How is that so difficult to understand? Why is this seemingly so difficult to implement?

      • GordonGordon commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Another plug for this feature. I am in the middle of a legal dispute and my text messages would be very, very helpful. I currently have no way of getting these. I understand the security component of opening up the API, however an alternate solution could be if Microsoft fulfilled the customer's need by being able to view and extract SMS messages from the backup on the cloud. I am not sure it would satisfy the need in an enterprise setting. Whatever the case is the customer needs a way to be able to extract SMS messages from the phone. Since I am in constant dispute with my ex this feature alone may drive me to an alternate platform even though I like my Windows Phone.

      • Mike CriderMike Crider commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        So I purchased a Windows 8 phone with the intention of writing apps for personal use, and for the app store. I currently have need for an app that can parse data in, as well as send and receive SMS. I bought the Windows phone specifically because I thought it would be easier to develop this style of app for my enterprise on windows .... not to mention compliance related tools that need to be developed around SMS.

        I am completely astonished that this capability is not available in Windows 8 phones. We have a good number of skilled C# developers that I would like to leverage in building apps for Windows phone, but when the most basic of features is not available for them to develop on, it leaves me scratching my head as to why even bother developing on Windows. If I have to train my developers up on Java, I might as well leverage that investment.

        I know that this issue alone will cause me to put my windows phone in a drawer, and not allow any additional Windows phone to be purchased in the organization. I am very disappointed. I was really wanting to push towards MS phones, but I can see why the app store is so light on apps.

      • aloahaaloaha commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        We had a very successful Windows Mobile (CE 5 & 6) SMS Application. Customers are asking us if we ever plan to port it to Windows.

        Unfortunately we have to tell them that MS does not allow us and they are better off with buying an Android device.

        SMS is less dead (banking, eHealth, etc.) then many people and MS think.

        I just do not understand why MS ignores that market.

      • aloahaaloaha commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        On Windows Mobile (CE 5 and 6) we had developed a very successful SMS Application.

        Customers are asking us to port it to Windows Phone.

        Currently all we can tell our customer is that MS is NOT allowing us and that they are better off with Android.

        I just cannot understand this!

      • AnonymousAnonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        If you can not give API access to SMS, why don't you (MS) create an app that can backup (for unfortunate event of data loss), Archive (for compliance), Export (to switch to other mobile OS) and Restore (to switch from other mobile OS) SMS. -- Offline (not to cloud).
        As a matter of fact, i would prefer if MS built this app then let 1000s of apps sniff my SMS.
        If you can not build such a simple app that means you don't have any resources allocated to this team and I suspect MS is discontinuing windows phone OS from its product range.

      • asdasd commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        With these API situation will become weird like on android now - most of googleplay's apps require sms-access even games and apps not related to sms management, making using these apps risky.

      • Andrey KalinovskiyAndrey Kalinovskiy commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        It's really necessary to have opportunity to read SMS messages by application code. For example, to parse SMS alerts from banks about money transfers in home finance application.

      • MKMK commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Cliff Simpkins wrote: "Although the capabilities are there from a consumer perspective..."

        No, from a consumer perspective, the capabilities are not there. You cannot transfer your messages to a computer or save them to a disk. All you can do is transfer them back to a phone. If that wasn't bad enough, if you delete some text from the phone, they are also deleted from the cloud. In a typical situation, if they accidentally got deleted, the so-called "backup" won't help to restore.

        If we need to look through old messages, we are supposed to scroll back and forth on the phone for the thousands of them.

        If we wanted to archive the previous years' SMS and only have the recent ones on the phone, what "capabilities are there" to do it?

        This nonsense turns an otherwise good phone into a joke.

        If you like your SMS, you can keep your SMS. Period.

      • DvaidDvaid commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I wanted to backup SMS from my Windows phone to my computer. I have been on various threads and that date back years wanting this functionality and it is still not possible to do so. It is obvious that Windows has no intention of providing this. Every response from MS is just a run around that avoids what its users are asking for. There is only one option for me left - to go back to using Android ASAP and never to return (this was my first Windows phone experience), the less messages lost to a Windows phone the better. How can MS expect to be a serious contender in the phone market if it still can not provide basic SMS archiving/transfer functionality.

      • CliveClive commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Without the ability for an MDM solution to backup/archive SMS messages, we will be forced to stick with BES and BB 10 devices. So please count this as 450 votes.

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