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How to Make SMS Text Message Notifications Longer on a Smartphone

Eugene is a qualified control/instrumentation engineer Bsc (Eng) and has worked as a developer of electronics & software for SCADA systems.

how-to-make-the-sms-notification-longer-on-a-smartphone

Lengthen Your Notifications

If you're old enough to remember dumb phones, you'll recall that notifications for SMS (short message service) text messages seemed to be a lot longer. Newer smartphones have a set of notification sounds that are really short and can easily be missed if you're out and about in a noisy environment.

However it's really easy to replace notifications with longer ones. This guide explains how to download new tones to your Android phone and then change the message notification sound in the settings for the app.

Step 1. Download a Notification Sound

There's lots of websites where you can download free sounds you can use for notifications. My original Nokia 6300 uses a Morse ringtone (Morse Code for the letters "S" "M" "S"), so I used that. OK, I know it's boring, but I instantly recognise it as being the notification for a text message rather than trying to differentiate it from all the other notification sounds on the phone.

To start, Google "notification sounds" in your browser to find websites where you can download sounds. One such site is NotificationsSounds.com. Once you find a sound you like, download the Android version to your phone (or MP3 file if Android isn't mentioned).

Once download is complete, it's put in the "Downloads" folder on your phone and you get a notification that you've downloaded a file.

how-to-make-the-sms-notification-longer-on-a-smartphone

Step 2. Access the Settings Menu for the Message App

There's two ways of doing it—either launch the settings app on your phone, choose the message app and then go to settings, or alternatively, as I do below, launch the message app and then access its settings directly.

  1. Open the message app on your phone by tapping on its icon.
  2. Tap on the three button menu at the top right of screen.
  3. Select "Settings".
Open the message app on your phone. The location of the icon on the screen may be different to this image, depending on how you layed out your icons.

Open the message app on your phone. The location of the icon on the screen may be different to this image, depending on how you layed out your icons.

Scroll to Continue
Launch the menu in the message app.

Launch the menu in the message app.

Choose "Settings" on the message menu.

Choose "Settings" on the message menu.

Step 3. Access the Notifications Section in the Settings Menu

  1. Tap on "Notifications" in the Settings menu.
  2. Select "Incoming messages".
  3. Select "Sound".
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the list of sounds and select "Add ringtone".
Tap on "Notifications" in the settings menu.

Tap on "Notifications" in the settings menu.

Tap on "incoming messages" in the settings menu.

Tap on "incoming messages" in the settings menu.

Tap on "Sound" in the Notifications menu.

Tap on "Sound" in the Notifications menu.

Scroll to the bottom of the lists of sounds and tap on "Add ringtone".

Scroll to the bottom of the lists of sounds and tap on "Add ringtone".

Step 4. Add the Ringtone From the "Downloads" Folder

  • Once you tap on "Add Ringtone", the default Android file manager app "Files" is launched (or whatever app you may have replaced it with).
  • Files will default to displaying recent files; however, if it doesn't, navigate to the "Downloads" folder by tapping on the three bar "hamburger" menu button at the top left of screen.
  • Select the MP3 file you downloaded earlier. This makes a copy of the file in the "Notifications" folder and you can delete it from Downloads if you want.
  • Once you select the ringtone, it's added to the list in the sound menu in the message app. Choose it by tapping the circular checkbox and then tap "Done"
  • Back out of the menus by tapping the "Home" button on your phone.
Navigate to the "Downloads" folder using the Files app and choose the sound file you downloaded.

Navigate to the "Downloads" folder using the Files app and choose the sound file you downloaded.

Tap the checkbox in the Sound menu corresponding to the ringtone you downloaded. Then Tap "Done". Navigate back to your phone's homepage.

Tap the checkbox in the Sound menu corresponding to the ringtone you downloaded. Then Tap "Done". Navigate back to your phone's homepage.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Eugene Brennan

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