New text/SMS app: Silence or QKSMS?

Hi,QKSMS is for me the best app because it’s more user-friendly - I’m actually using it on /e/.
Those who want to encrypt their messages can easily download and use Silence or Signal.

Another solution it to let the choice to the user during the first configuration of /e/ :slight_smile:


I have been using signal for a few years and I am very happy with it. The “annoying” number verification applies only, if you want to use encrypted messaging with this specific person. Unencrypted sms do not require number verification.
In my feeling the default installation of signal gives a hint how whats app can be replaced. Signal has all the functionality of whats app + it sends normal sms

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I don’t agree with this. We need a ready to use phone OS that is open source & privacy orientated. Even technically endowed people don’t all have time to build own OS from source.

Is it possible to fork Silence so that it automatically sends encrypted messages in /e/ to /e/ messaging but sends normal SMS to other phones. (A bit like Apple iMessages)

@VitTh I use the dual Sim feature in QKSMS. Would be sad if Silence does not support this.


I used SMSSecure and after Silence, I’m very happy of this application. I managed to convert many people around me to use Silence. And I know no-geeks who encrypt their SMS with it. I think this feature is finally available for lambda users :tada:

It’s really good news if Silence is installed by default :+1:

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I have tried both. QKSMS has many features (too many for Mom and Dad ?) and is well presented (good interface, possibility to schedule night mode, etc), but it is buggy. Sometimes I didn’t receive some messages, and I had also issues when sending MMS. It is also heavier, and makes my limited hardware freeze when opening (tried with a Samsung S4 mini with Lineage OS).
In comparison, I think Silence is much better. The interface is simpler (and it follows perfectly Android’s Material Design), and if you don’t care about encryption, there is no problem : it sends normal SMS very easily. And if your contacts use Silence, you can encrypt them easily as well.
Signal is definitely a bad choice. Too difficult to use, and also a SMS app should be simple. For instance, almost none of my contacts use it, so I don’t care about the Whatsapp-like features, and I also like to have things separated (SMS on one app, social network on another, etc).
So I vote Silence (but I don’t know about technical details such as dual-SIM).

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Material design is Google design, not Android.
Does Silence support dual sim smartphones?

I would not say that Signal is difficult to use. And having a single app for both solution supports the ease of use by offering a single experience for 2 different needs. I would vote for keeping signal and removing Telegram. As for the dual sim need, contributing to the project could be one solution.

That’s why I suggest QKSMS as well :slight_smile:


In my opinion, going with QKSMS by default is confusing the message (pun!) of the product as a whole. The first sentence of the “About Us” section of the website states:

e/ is a non-profit project, in the public interest. We build open-source mobile operating systems that respect users’ data privacy.

Sure, QKSMS may look more modern and it may be a little easier to use (going off of what others have said prior to me), but if it has no encryption capability (or really anything that improves the users privacy), than I feel like it doesn’t really jive with the ethos of the foundation.

Personally/Selfishly, my vote is Signal. I’ve been using it for awhile now and I really like that I can access it from a desktop with other signal users as well. I use it on my phone as the default SMS app and I haven’t had any problems.

I’ve never looked in to Silence, but I would much rather go with it than an app that doesn’t speak to what the foundation is trying to achieve.


I vote for QKSMS. Simple to use and not much to configure.
Do not like giving my phone number to signal for registration.
Given that v1 will have default apps as un-installable, if a specific user or a client ( an organization wants all its employee phones on /e/) wants to have a encrypted sms app they can download one and use it removing QKSMS.

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Silence supports dual-SIM. Possibility to choose the SIM by making a long-press on the send button.

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Yes we will probably have some plans for the long term as well to fork and make the best, most easy to use and most user-friendly SMS app. I agree that the capability to have a bridge between the SMS app and desktop message app on various OS (ike it is in the iOS closed ecosystem) would be a big benefit for users. I secretely hoped we could achieve this with Signal easily but the tests I have shown it’s far to be the case.

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I use Signal not only for sms but also for chatting by wifi with other Signal users (a option for replacing WhatsApp / Creating groups). Does the other allow it? Are they available for Iphone ? Does they allow to automatically kill messages after a certain time (which is very useful)?

In my opinion, we should keep Signal:

  • It has good encryption by default
  • It handle SMS/MMS and Signal conversations
  • The feature to backup/restore is secure, easy to use and work great
  • It is very stable
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I already remove it for QKSMS in my /e/ custom build and it’s works like other default sms apps (the only change).
no need to create an account with phone number(even automatically)

I hope silence was replace by default and have sms working out of the box.

i still hope that microG settings was to désactivate by default and not enable and Disallow connecting to google servers that is set to allow and can’t change

Since the main objectives of /e/ (as I understand it) are to de-GAFAM the smartphone experience to ensure privacy for the average consumer, then the SMS app must be easy to use. I’ve not tried any of the alternatives but QKSMS seems to best option to meet /e/'s objectives.

As a side note, I would really like an open-source solution for backing up / syncing SMS/MMS messages in the cloud in such a way that they can easily be read from an SMS/MMS app on another OS. There are lots of cloud backup solutions, but I’m not aware of one which is cross-platform and which allows messages to be synced between devices. Please, if I missed the app that provides this, tell me.

Thanks :slight_smile:

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QKSMS, most people never use encryption, those who want to encrypt messages can always install an app of their own choice. Let’s keep it simple.
After the last update this is what Signal did when I wanted to send an “unsecured” SMS, I got spammed by a local network-provider (not my mobile provider) and had to block this Proximus to stop the spam:

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I also use Silence and think it’s far superior to QKSMS which I also used for a while.
As far as I understand it with Silence all messages to and from another Silence user are automatically encrypted without any action needed by the users. If all /e/ users had that by default that would certainly be a big step towards more encryption.


At Commown we chose Silence as the default SMS app for both “discovery” and “geek” flavors of our Fairphone Open OS-based offer, and our customers seem to be happy with it. It is very simple to use when you do not use encryption, and almost equally simple when you do (there may be small glitches when your contact changes is phone for instance).
I find @PaulaFairphone’s argument really constructive, as it would strengthen /e/ users community attitude.