It was rumored a few years ago that Apple was going to extend iMessage to other devices such as Android and Windows PCs, so Apple customers could keep in touch with their friends no matter what OS they used. The projects seems to have lost its way because it’s been many years since, and not even another rumor about it has surfaced anywhere.
Luckily, people who want to use iMessage on their PC “still have a way”.
And no, it is not through some ugly emulator that will only slow your PC in a month of use. It is through a different class of software known as Virtual Machines that will not just run the iMessage App on your PC, it will do it without making it look like your PC is from the 80s. Read more to find out.
How using an emulator can slow down your PC
iMessage is quick and easy to figure out and use, and its chat bubbles and chat windows have become part of collective memory. In fact, think on texting right now and I’m sure you’re visualising blue and grey chat bubbles with the contact name displayed in the centre, right with the anticipation of a hilarious and/or embarrassing autocorrect joke unfolding right in front of your eyes.
Everyone wants the app, and so blogs trying to get clicks from search engines and social media actively make giant claims about their method. None of them are worth it, however, since they all talk about using emulators.
Emulators are good if you’re a developer and can figure out what will make your PC run faster when the application cramps it up in a single month. For the rest of us, the emulator does absolutely nothing but give short term gratification by letting us run a game or two and then slowing the PC to a halt to the point where trying to launch a web browser becomes painful.
So How should You Exactly Download iMessage App on your Computer?
Virtual Machines are a better choice than emulators because they have a lesser impact on your PCs ability to function. A hosted hypervisor like VMware Workstation is a good option to approach. Using a Virtual Machine and installing Mac OS on it should make your windows computer capable of using the complete feature-set of iMessage.
We’ve compiled the method for you in a simple sequence. Make sure you follow it step by step.
Let’s Talk about the Method Now!
It is important to note here that not all versions of VMware run on all Windows versions. For example, support for Windows Vista stopped after version 10.0, so you’ll have to get a VMware version that falls between 6.0 and 10.0 to run virtual machines on your Windows Vista PC. Similarly, if you have Windows 10.1 or later, you’re going to need to pick VMware 12.5 or above to run Virtual machines on it. Windows 7, 8 and 10 are all supported on VMware. So let’s start by guiding you the installation procedure for virtual machines.
- Download VMware Workstation application on your PC. Make sure the version you download is compatible with the Windows version you’re using (check our above guidelines). Also, check if your AMD processor is compatible. Intel processors usually are.
- Extract the downloaded files if you have got them in a compressed (.ZIP) format. Run the installation file as Administrator (right click the file). Reboot the PC when prompted and you’re done installing the base software.
- You now need to install Mac OS on your Windows PC. Download Mac OS (there are several versions available across the internet; google to find one you like).
- Now extract the files and unlock them. Double click the unlock folders to do so.
- Right click the installation file and run it as administrator again. Command Prompt should appear for a few seconds. Do not touch your keyboard at this point, unless you know your way around in CMD.
- The virtual machine should now be set up. Open VMware Workstation and you should see the OS listed in the sidebar. All that is left is to configure it using an existing Apple ID or a new one.
- iMessage is an inbuilt feature in Mac OS, so you don’t need to do anything more. Just run your Virtual Machine whenever you need to text and use the iMessage app hassle-free on your Windows PC by launching it from the taskbar at the bottom.
- Can I access iMessage online using this method?
That’s the plan. A Virtual Machine requires an internet connection when running any iOS or Mac apps that need one. If you’re wondering if you will be able to use the app like on a web client like WhatsApp’s web.whatsapp.com, then no.
- Can I run iMessage on my Chromebook?
Unfortunately, no. VMware Workstation is not available for Chrome’s OS or for Android. If you want to get iMessage for Chromebook, you’ll have to wait till a decent Virtualisation software or an emulator comes out that is compatible with Chromebooks. Until then, you’re stuck without it.
- I tried Bluestacks, iMessage runs fine. Why are you against emulators?
We’re not against emulators. We just think they’re really poor options considering they clog your PC in barely a month of use. It might be anecdotal evidence we have, but it is enough for us to share our point of view with reasonable conviction. Maybe someday, emulators will be competent enough for us to recommend them to you.
- Is there a way to get iMessage on my PC without jailbreak?
Yes. This method we listed requires no jailbreaking. There are methods touted to work by people on the internet, but most of us at TechiesPad aren’t very fond of jailbreaking, nor can we recommend it. If you choose to use a method to get iMessage for your desktop that involves jailbreaking your iPhone, beware that you’re likely doing it at your own risk. It is better to learn everything there is to know about jailbreaking and maybe get a little observation and practice done before doing it on your own device. iPhones aren’t exactly cheap, you know?
- Are there any alternatives to iMessage for PC in 2018?
There aren’t a lot of them exactly, but it might help someone to know about them so I’m going to mention it anyway. There’s this thing called remote messaging that you can access. Unfortunately, it requires jailbreaking which is something we collectively do not recommend. Until Apple comes out with a native iMessage app for Windows 10 (or even Android), this might be the only way to reply to messages through a Windows PC and have them deliver in your iMessage platform. However, it is important to note that this isn’t exactly running iMessage on Windows PC. That will only be possible when Apple makes an exe file of the app accessible.
- Are there any risks to running iMessage on a virtual machine?
For the most part, it is safe. However, people with specific PC configurations or applications might end up facing some problems. If you do, this pretty exhaustive post on TonyMacx86 might help you find a solution based on your particular situation and symptoms.
Your Windows PC will thank you for choosing a Virtual Machine over an emulator. Trust me; I’ve had two PCs totalled by two very commonly recommended Android emulators.
If you still have any doubts, just drop a comment over here and one of our staff members will get back to you.