[Android] How To Use TextNow As Your Native Dialer

One of our most requested features, TextNow is happy to announce that you can now opt-into using your native dialer with TextNow! You'll now be able to use your device's built-in dialer (i.e. the green phone icon), or the TextNow dialer, whichever you choose.

Here's a quick run-down of how to turn it on, along with what changes you'll see between using the native and TextNow dialers. Note that this applies to devices with Android Marshmallow (6.0) and above on the CDMA network.

As we rollout this new feature over the course of the next week or so, you should see this interstitial pop up on your TextNow device. Tap Accept to continue. (You can also tap Later to set this up later, or Learn More for a link to this article.)


After tapping Accept, you'll see this next screen asking you to tap OK to allow TextNow to use the native dialer. (If you chose to set TextNow as your default later, you can get to this setting in your TextNow app under Settings > Calling > Default Calling App.)




Once you select OK, you'll see that the Default Calling App is now set to use TextNow. 




Once you set the default to use TextNow, you will receive our best dialer and calling experience to date with a highly-integrated dialing experience between VOIP and the cellular network. You can disable this feature from the Default Apps menu in in your main Android Settings app anytime.

Once you’re in the Native Dialer experiment and you're on a cellular phone call, you’ll see the TextNow screen with Cellular connection at the top of your call. This means that TextNow is now able to give you the best dialer and calling integration to date.


You should be aware of some key differences between using the native dialer and the TextNow dialer during PSTN calls. (PSTN refers to the publicly switched telephone network - a fancy way to refer to the cell phone voice network. Calls over data (i.e. wifi or 3G/4G) are VoIP calls (voice over IP), while calls over the cellular network are PSTN.) 

Some important differences to remember between PSTN and VoIP:

  • Calls cannot be placed on hold on PSTN. (For example, you cannot complete a conference call on PSTN, as it would involve placing your call on hold in order to conference in a third party.)
  • You can, however, receive another call while on the line with your current call (i.e. call waiting).
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  • Avatar
    Ki Xiong

    How can I link my text now number.onto my native messaging application? My OS is Android 7(Nougat)

  • Avatar
    Erin TextNow Support

    Hi there,

    At this time there is no way for you to integrate your TextNow number into your native messaging application. You can move your TextNow app to your phone's home page if you want to use it as your default messaging app though so it's easily accessible.

    Edited by Erin TextNow Support
  • Avatar
    Rebecca Gaebel

    I cannot chat live with your support to explain to me why not there is no icon at the bottom right-hand of this page for submit or support to where do I do from here

  • Avatar
    Valeria TextNow Support

    Hi Rebecca! I'm afraid that our live chat support is only available until 4pm EST on weekends.

    If you still require any further assistance, please feel free to reach out to them today, available until 9pm EST!

  • Avatar
    Amanda Ashcraft

    I want the textnow dialer i keep changing it to text now dialer but it keeps turning off text now dialer n i have to keep going in n changing it in my settings. Any way to fix this problem

  • Avatar
    jason bay

    i am unable to get online or send or receive texts without wi fi ...but i can make calls i have moto e4 that i got from text now

  • Avatar
    Erin TextNow Support

    Hi Amanda, if the default dialer setting keeps resetting we may need to do some testing and get more information from you to determine the cause. Please contact our chat support team so we can speak to you directly and find out what's happening.

    Hey Jason, If you're having trouble connecting to the Data network to use your service off of WiFi we will also need to get your account information and help get your device activated.

    Our chat support team will be available in the bottom right corner of this page until 9pm EST tonight to assist you both.