Many iPhone users want to access the iMessage application on their personal or workplace computers. Thus, enabling them to chat with friends and family across all types of devices. For those who are ‘iFolks’ and have Apple computers, keeping up with iMessage is comfortable. But not everybody is privileged; those handfuls of users with Windows PCs at home and especially at work find it impossible to access their iMessage.
Browser-based iMessage: A popular MYTH
Apple users have this common misconception that there is a browser-based online service for iMessage. Thus making it easy for everyone to have round the clock access to their iMessage app. Currently, there seems no such service available for getting iMessages online for the simple reason that Apple wants to limit its services to its own devices and computers. Hence, there seems no easy way for the billions of users to access iMessage until we are using the Windows PC.
However, there are some workarounds available to use iMessage app on a Windows PC. Moreover, we can also receive and send messages on iMessage without any hiccups.
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Access iMessage with your Windows PC
Method 1: Remote Access
One way to get iMessage on your Windows PC is to use Google’s Remote Desktop app available on the Chrome Web Store. But you need to set up a few things first. The way the Remote Desktop app works is that it accesses the iMessage by connecting the Windows PC remotely to your Mac computer.
Therefore, the principal limitation of this method is that the iMessage can only be accessed when the Mac is on and connected to an internet connection. And you need your Apple ID. However, regarding security, the Chrome Remote Desktop is highly secure, and no unwarranted or unauthorized access is available to exploit. The connections are performed securely over the internet and via Chrome browser.
Using Chrome Remote Desktop on Mac
- If you don’t have a Google account, we recommended that you sign up for one. After creating your account sign into Google Chrome.
- In the chrome web store search for Chrome Remote Desktop app in the applications section. Download the application from the chrome store and Select Add app to Chrome.
- Don’t worry if this is your first time as you might see a message requesting authorization to add the app to your browser.
- Select Continue and check if the app appears in Google Chrome by typing chrome://apps list in the search bar.
- Click on the App to start the procedure. When the pop-up appears, choose Enable remote connections under My Computer tab.
- After enabling remote connections, download Chrome’s remote host installer on Mac by following the instructions on-screen.
- When the popup appears, select “Accept and Install” to install the Chrome Remote Desktop Host.
- Save the file in your preferred location or download folder.
- Double-click on the chrome remote desktop file to install the app on your Mac.
- Complete the installation by following the on-screen steps and enter your admin password if asked. Open the Chrome Remote Desktop app and enable the “Enable Remote Connections” option.
- Create a PIN which will be the link for establishing the remote connection. The PIN should be a minimum of 6 digits. Please ensure that you remember the PIN if you can’t, then we advise you to note it down as you will need to enter this PIN when you connect from the other PC.
- After creating the PIN, you will get a successful message saying that remote connections are now enabled.
Access the iMessage from another computer
- To access your Mac using a Windows PC, open Google Chrome on the Windows computer and sign in to the same account on Google you used for setting up Chrome Remote Desktop on your Mac.
- Open the Chrome Remote Desktop App by typing chrome://apps in the address bar and search for your Mac alias under the My Computers section.
- Merely Double-Click on the icon to establish a remote connection. To connect it will ask for the PIN which you created while installing the Chrome Remote Desktop App on the Mac.
- After the connection is established, you will be able to view your Mac screen on your Windows PC. For better visibility switch your window to Full Screen.
- Now you can check all your messages on iMessage quickly by opening the iMessage app on your Mac. If the app is not available in the dock on the main screen then, tap on Launchpad to locate the iMessages app and click on it to run it.
- As soon as you open the iMessage app, you will be able to see all your messages on iMessage onto your Windows PC.
- The connection terminates when you tap the Stop Sharing button located at the bottom of the screen.
- Moreover, you can reconnect with ease by tapping the Reconnect button and inputting the PIN.
Method 2: Jail Break
At present, the sole way to access iMessage over a browser is by jailbreaking your iPhone. Jailbreak refers to the replacement of the actual iOS operating system with a new OS which is more adaptable and flexible. Moreover, it allows you to change the look and feel of your iDevice with the help of a plethora of custom apps, custom tweaks, and a wide variety of add-ons which are not available officially in the Apple Store.
All in all, jailbreaking enables the customization similar to the rooted Android ecosystem. And among many of such sweet tweaks, once is the support to use iMessages across the internet. In addition to that, you can quickly roll back to the official OS by a factory reset.
Please duly note that it is NOT recommended to jailbreak your iPhones and other iDevices as it voids your warranty automatically. In addition to your warranty jailbreak also voids the AppleCare+ purchases. Furthermore, there is also the risk of “bricking” your iDevice if you don’t follow the exact procedure.
Other issues encountered post jailbreak also involve bugs, and potential security breaches or even planted malware. Thus jailbreak your iPhone only if you are incredibly comfortable with troubleshooting your Apple devices.
For those Bravehearts who went ahead and performed a jailbreak on their iPhones, you need to install a software called Cydia. Cydia is eerily similar to the official Apple Store and is a directory of applications for jailbroken iOS devices.
Post the installation of Cydia you will be required to spend $4 to download an app called Remote Messages from Cydia. The app sets up a web-based interface for your iMessage app which you will be able to connect to from anywhere and any device over the internet. To connect, you must type in your iPhones’ IP address with “:333” in the end. While it may sound complicated, the app is quite easy to use and explains everything in detail. Thus, you can remotely access your iMessage app from any device including your Windows PC.
Despite the way Apple functions presently, people are still hopeful that someday Apple might release a cross-platform version of iMessage which will be accessible by all devices and operating systems. Unless that day arrives, we are left with nothing but to use remote connection services like Chrome Remote Desktop and jailbreak to access iMessage.