Send and read messages

Effective communication is the backbone of any project or collaboration. Slack makes it easy to send and read messages so you can quickly share information with your workspace.

Send messages in Slack

Desktop

iOS

Android

Windows Phone

  1. Type your message in the message field at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Press Enter to send.

If you start writing a message and navigate away from it, you’ll see a  pencil icon next to the channel name or direct message to remind you that you’ve started a draft.

Tip: You can quickly edit your last message by pressing the up arrow key in the empty message field.

  1. Tap the message field at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Type your message.
  3. Tap Send.

Note: To give yourself more space to compose, tap the diagonal arrows icon or swipe up on the message field.

You can add to your message using the options below:

Action Icon
Share a photo  
Upload and attach a file  
Choose a slash command  
Mention a member  

Tip: To edit a message, touch and hold the message, then tap Edit message.

  1. Tap the message field at the bottom of the screen
  2. Type your message
  3. Tap the   paper plane icon to send.

You can add to your messages using the options below:

Action Icon
Choose an emoji   
Take a photo to share  
Share a photo  
Upload and attach a file  
Choose a slash command  
Mention a member  

Tip: To edit a message, long-press the message and then tap Edit.

  1. Tap the message field at the bottom of the screen
  2. Type your message.
  3. Tap the   paper plane icon to send.

Tip: To edit a message, long-press the message and then tap Edit

Note: You also have the option to add a send button to your Slack screen, allowing you to use the Enter key to add a new line to your text. Learn more about how to do this in Manage your send button preference.


Read messages in Slack

Desktop

iOS

Android

Windows Phone

Open and view channels

When you’re viewing a channel, its name will be highlighted in the channel list on the left.

If you see a channel name in bold in the list, that means there’s unread activity – click it to open the channel and view unread messages.

You’ll see a blue bar when you open a channel with unread activity: this tells you the number of new messages since you last viewed the channel.

unread_blue_bar


Unread messages

Slack marks a channel as read as soon as you view it by default, but you can change the way your unread activity is managed from your preferences. Here’s how:

  1. From your desktop, click your workspace name in the top left.
    team_menu
  2. Select Preferences from the menu.
  3. Click the Mark as read tab.
  4. Under When I view a channel, select your preference.

You can choose from one of these options:

  • Start where you left off (at the oldest unread message) and mark the channel as read
  • Start at the newest message and mark the channel as read
  • Start at the newest message but leave the older messages unread

Mark messages as unread

If you need to come back to a channel later, you can mark messages as unread. Here’s how: 

  1. Hover over the oldest message you want to mark as unread.
  2. Click the More actions icon.
  3. Click Mark unread.

The message you’ve selected and any others that are sent after it will be marked unread.

Tip: You can also set an unread point by holding Alt and selecting a message.

Open and view channels

In the iOS app, your main view will be of the channel you’re currently in. Here’s how to navigate to other channels:

  1. Swipe left to right to open the channel list.
  2. Tap the channel you want to view.

If a channel name is in bold text, this means there’s unread activity. Channels with unread activity will appear at the top of the channel list.


Unread messages

Slack will display a blue bar when a channel has more unread activity than can fit on your screen.

Tap the arrow on the left to jump to the oldest unread message or mark the channel as read by tapping the   close icon at the far right of the bar
.

Note: To disable the blue unread bar, swipe from right to left, tap Settings, Advanced and toggle Mark as read immediately.


Mark messages as unread

If you need to come back to a channel later, you can mark messages as unread. Here’s how:

  1. Long-press a message.
  2. Tap Mark unread.

The message you’ve selected and any others sent after it will be marked as unread.

Open and view channels

In the Android app, your main view will be of the channel you’re currently in. Here’s how to navigate to other channels:

  1. Tap your workspace icon on the top left side or swipe from left to right to open the channel list.
  2. Tap the channel you want to view.

If a channel name is in bold text, this means there’s unread activity. Channels with unread activity will appear at the top of the channel list.


Unread messages

Slack will display a blue bar when a channel has more unread activity than can fit on your screen. Tap the blue bar to jump to the oldest unread message or tap the  close icon at the far right of the bar to mark the channel as read.


Mark messages as unread

If you need to come back to a channel later, you can mark messages as unread. Here’s how:

  1. Long-press a message.
  2. Tap Mark unread.

The message you’ve selected and any others sent after it will be marked as unread.

Open and view channels

In the Windows Phone app, your main view will be of the channel you’re currently in. Here’s how to move to other channels:

  1. Tap the channel list icon on the top left side.
  2. Tap the channel you want to view.

If a channel name is in bold text, this means there’s unread activity. Channels with unread activity will appear at the top of the channel list.


Unread messages

When a channel has more unread activity than can fit on your screen, Slack will display a red bar above the oldest message. Whenever you need to catch up, scroll up the bar to find where you left off.

Related articles

Recently viewed articles