Messages Tweak Updated for iOS 7
Developer Ma Jun has often flown under the radar, but his tweaks for jailbroken iDevices have proven surprisingly powerful. I was a big fan of his lock screen notification center replacement Bulletin, which took the default notification center and added a lot of very welcome features. With the new update for Messages—which so closely ties in to the iOS style that it even borrows its name from Apple’s app—he does something similar for the stock iOS Messages interface.
When it comes to messaging tweaks, the first thing people look for is almost always a Quick Compose/Quick Reply feature, and Messages delivers. By providing several ways to launch the QC sheet—which, again, looks exactly like the native messaging UI—Jun has made sure that you can use his tweak however you’d like via Activator, QuickDo, or even a Send Messages widget you can add to the bottom of the notification center’s Today view.
He also offers a wide range of useful options to help shape the tweak to your own workflow. For instance, you can decide what the “To:” field will show when you launch the new message sheet, having it auto-populate with the last contact you messaged, or show you a list of recents, or a list of favorites. Or you can leave it empty, and use one of Jun’s thoughtful gestures (see photo above) to fill in the blank. The use of gestures like these at times makes the new Messages feel more like part of iOS 7 than the native app itself, and certainly more so than an app like BiteSMS, which has struggled recently in its transition to the iOS 7 world. Where that app has stumbled as it searched for a balance between old and new, Ma Jun seems to have been unafraid to start from scratch—although by building on Apple’s own UI, Jun does have a large head start.
Messages doesn’t offer everything an app like Bite might—it doesn’t, for instance, offer a way to schedule SMS for later delivery, or Skype someone, or FaceTime, and so on. But I’ll be honest: after owning a BiteSMS license for many years, I don’t think I used those features once, and they often seemed like excess baggage. And that’s the great thing about Messages—it’s an experience so familiar, light, and seamless that you almost forget you’re using a tweak at all. To borrow a line from Apple: You already know how to use it.
Messages does have a few tricks up its sleeve. It offers a “Black Style” for those who find iOS 7 too bright, as well as an optional 1-6 second Delay Send feature that lets you call back those SMS you didn’t mean to send. But for all it does (and if you dig into the gestural controls, it can do quite a bit), it’s what Messages doesn’t do that makes it so great. If you’re looking for a messaging tweak that offers a lot of useful features without a lot of needless changes, Messages might be just the thing. It’s available now on the developer’s repo (add cydia.clezz.com to your Cydia sources) for $3.99, and comes with a 3-day free trial.
Source: Jack John Brown: Messages for iOS 7