How to Text GIFs on Android

This article teaches you how to send GIFs as text messages on Android smartphones and tablets. GIFs are short, animated images that are popular to send to friends as a fun way to communicate. If you've downloaded a GIF file from the internet you can easily attach it to a text message

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Attaching a GIF to a Text Message

Open Messages. It's the app with the icon of a white speech bubble on a blue background, usually located in your Android phone's app drawer.

  • If you don't have the Android Messages app, you can download it from the Google Play Store.

Tap. It's the blue circular button with a white plus sign "+" in the bottom-right corner of the app. This will open a screen prompting you to select a recipient for your text message.

Select a contact. If you are starting a new conversation, tap a contact from your contact list or type a name or number in the "To" field at the top of the screen.

Tap. Tap the circular button with the plus sign "+" located on the left-side of the message's text field.

  • On some texting apps, this may be a paperclip icon instead.

Tap. Tap the image icon to select your images that are on your phone's storage.

Tap Gallery. Tap the "Gallery" panel to select the GIF file you downloaded on your phone.

Select your GIF. Tap the GIF you want to send to attach it to the text message. You'll see the GIF inserted into a small preview image of the text message. You should see the animation play in the preview window so you can see what it looks like before you send it.

  • If you don't see the specific GIF file on your phone, try tapping  in the top-left corner and then tapping Downloads in the left-side column.

Tap. It's the paper airplane icon on the right-side of the message field. This send the animated GIF image in a text message.


Using the Giphy App

Open Giphy. It's the app with the icon of a multi-colored neon outline of a page on a black background, located in the app drawer on your Android phone.

  • You can download the Giphy app from the Google Play Store for free if you don't have the Giphy app on your phone.

Browse or search for a GIF to send. You can tap the tabs at the top of the screen to browse GIFs by category, or you can use the search bar at the top of the screen to search for GIFs by name or keywords.

  • The "Trending" and "Reactions" sections are usually filled with fun animations from popular shows and movies.

Tap a GIF. This will display a large version of the GIF with some sharing options below the GIF.

Tap the gree text message icon. It's the green icon with a square-shaped speech bubble.

Select a contact. If you want to send the GIF someone in your contacts list, select the contact from your contact list, or you can tap the option to select a new contact or compose a new message. Once a contact is selected, you'll see a preview of the GIF added to the message field of the text message.

  • These options will vary depending on the default texting app you are using.
  • You can add an optional message to the text message as well by tapping the text field portion of the text.

Tap. It's the paper airplane icon on the bottom-right corner of the screen. This sends your GIF file in a text message to the contact you selected.

  • On some text messaging apps, this button may say "Send" instead.

Using Gboard

Install and set up Gboard on your phone. If you haven't already, install Gboard, the Google keyboard, on your Android phone.

  • You can download Gboard from the Google Play Store.

Open your texting app and start a new text message. Using your phone's default texting app, you can select an ongoing conversation or tap the option to compose a new text message and select a recipient from your contact list.

Tap the text field to compose your message. Tap the message field to type your text message. On some text messaging apps this may say "Text message" or something similar. If Gboard is set as your default keyboard, this will open the Gboard keyboard automatically.

Tap. It's the smiley face icon at the bottom of the keyboard, to the left of the spacebar.

Tap GIF. The GIF tab is at the bottom row of the keyboard, somewhat near the middle.

Browse or search for a GIF. You can browse GIFs by tapping the categories tabs below the GIFs or type a keyword in the search bar to search for a specific GIF.

Tap a GIF to add it to the text message. Tap the GIF you want to send and it will automatically be added to the text message you are creating.

Tap. It's the paper airplane icon in the bottom-right of your text messaging app. This will send the GIF you selected to the contact you selected.

  • On some text messaging apps, this button may say "Send" instead.

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