How to set up custom text messages you can use to respond to calls

How to set up custom text messages that you can use to respond to calls you can’t answer.

We’ve all been in the position where we can’t answer a phone call because we’re driving, eating or in an important meeting, but did you know that there’s a simple way that you can let the caller know that you’re not being rude, you’re just otherwise occupied?

Here’s how to set up custom text messages you can use to respond to calls you can’t take.

You’ll probably notice that when your phone rings, this screen will appear.

iPhone call screen 

Now, you see that little icon on the right hand side that says ‘Message’? If you tap that whilst your phone is ringing, you’ll be presented with three pre-set text message responses that read “Sorry, I can’t talk right now.” “I’m on my way.” and “Can I call you later?”. If you tap on any of these options, your iPhone will automatically send that as a text message to the person calling you.

That’s all well and good if you like the stock messages, but you can also change these pre-set responses in your settings. Simply go to Settings > Phone > Respond with Text and this screen will appear.

iPhone respond with text sscreen

As you can see, I’ve already changed my default responses to some which are more ‘me’. And you can do the same. Just tap into one of the pre-set response fields and change it to something more suitable for your purposes. You may type in “Sorry, I’m playing golf. Please text me your name and number and I’ll call back”, or “I can’t take your call right now, I’ll call you back shortly”.

Now when you receive a call, all you have to do is tap the ‘Message’ icon and your custom responses will appear. All you have to do is tap the one you like and it will send automatically. And you can create your own messages to suit many different purposes.

What sort of message would you create to respond to calls?



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    15th Apr 2016
    Touching the phone whilst driving is illegal in most states. Unless that icon is able to be activate with Bluetooth unfortunately this idea is not relevant in a car.
    15th Apr 2016
    while driving, don't think so.
    15th Apr 2016
    If you look and touch your phone whilst driving, you are committing an offense. I am surprised you offer this advice at all. If it rings, then I ignore it, then when I am out of the car, not sitting in it with the keys in the ignition and the engine even turned off (according to police, you are technically still in charge of the car because the keys are in the ignition ), then I will look at missed calls, and phone them back.
    18th Apr 2016
    Yes, you are correct. I should make it clear that you shouldn't touch your phone whilst driving. I may look into whether or not Siri can do it for you. Stay tuned...
    15th Apr 2016
    Cannot find anything like this on my Samsung S5 so I guess this tip only applies o Apple phones.
    In which case - poorly presented Leon.
    18th Apr 2016
    Hi Melfunction,
    I'm sorry that you use a Samsung phone – JUST KIDDING!
    I will speak to our Android guru Ryan this week and see if we can help you with your query. Stay tuned ...
    17th Apr 2016
    Hi Leon, With IPhones is it possible to direct "Hi Siri" to respond whilst driving? If this works wont need to touch the phone at all.
    18th Apr 2016
    I'll find out Sallad and update this article, or write another with that info included...
    28th Sep 2016
    I still see a lot of business people especially; use their mobiles while driving and that is most of the time !! They consider it an efficiency thing. They believe it down time while driving to be made use of and not wasted. So dont know what to do about that !!

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