How to Auto-Reply to a Phone Call with a Text on the iPhone

I hate declining calls. I always feel guilty and so I allow my phone to ring and ring for fear that, if I try to decline it, I’ll give away the fact that I am totally aware I have a call, but am pointedly choosing not to answer. Of course, sometimes I’m actually busy, and can’t answer the call; in which case, I still feel guilty (though that may be residual guilt left over from my years of Catholic school…). However, now iOS 8 gives you the ability to quickly send an pre-written text when declining a call, somewhat softening the blow of the decline to the caller, while not putting you, the decliner, through too much trouble. Your phone comes pre-loaded with a few stock phrases, such as “Sorry, I can’t talk right now” and “Can I call you later?” as well as giving you the option to write your own auto-phrases. Keep reading to learn how.

1. Open Settings.

IMG_5111 (2)2. Tap “Phone.”

IMG_5112 (2)3. Tap “Respond with Text.”

IMG_52774. Tap any of the stock phrases to over-write them with your own custom message.

IMG_5114 (1)5. When you receive a call you have to decline, tap “Message.”


6. Tap the message you wish to send.

IMG_5116 (1)

Once you tap the phrase you want to send, your phone automatically declines the call and texts the caller your chosen message. In addition, if you need to send a more elaborate message, choose “Custom…” and your phone will decline the call and open up the messages app, making it easy for you to text the caller whatever you want.

The iOS 8 only gives you three options for these quick messages, so choose your phrases wisely. Which ones do you find you use the most, techies? What are are your go-to phrases?

For more iOS tips and tricks head to our iOS How To’s section.

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