What to know
- On the Google Chat mobile app, quote a message by holding down on a message and selecting “Quote in reply”. On the web-based app, simply hover over a message to get the same option.
- You can use an unofficial Chrome extension to quote multiple messages.
Google Chat has always been a simple, no-fuss messenger app, with a minimalist aesthetic and basic features. But that minimalism often comes at a price. For instance, until very recently, Google Chat did not have the option to quote a prior message in your reply, which is a feature you’ll see on most messaging services. Thankfully, that is now being addressed with the addition of a new ‘Quote in Reply’ feature.
This guide will show you how to use Google Chat’s ‘Quote in Reply’ feature to respond with more context, and which workarounds to resort to if you need to add multiple quotes in your reply. Let’s begin.
How to use ‘Quote in Reply’ in Google Chat
The addition of a ‘Quote in Reply’ button lets users get a better grip on the context of the conversation, especially when there are multiple parties sharing the same space. Here’s how to use it in your conversations:
Method 1: On Google Chat’s mobile app
Regardless of whether you’re using an iPhone or an Android device, the steps to quoting a message in your reply are the same for both. Firstly, open the Google Chat app on your smartphone.
Open a chat or space by tapping on it.
Then tap and hold the message that you want to quote.
Select Quote in reply.
The message will now be highlighted (or quoted) as part of your reply.
If you highlighted the wrong message, simply tap on the ‘X’ next to it to delete it.
Otherwise, continue typing your reply and hit Send.
Your reply will now have the quoted message appear in a box before it.
You can quote anyone’s messages in your reply, even your own, ensuring that everyone stays on the same page.
Method 2: On the desktop web app
If you’re working on a PC, open Google Chat on a browser (or its web app if you have it installed separately).
Select a conversation from the left side pane.
Hover the cursor over the message that you want to quote. Here, you will see a few options appear in a box to the top right of the message, including the ‘Quote in Reply’ option (with a back arrow icon). Click on it to quote this message.
As before, you will see the reply highlighted in a box.
Enter your message as usual and hit Send.
Your reply will include the quoted message in a box.
Google Chat’s in-built ‘Quote in Reply’ feature works well for the most part. The only area where it lacks is in its inability to quote multiple messages in your reply. If your conversations require you to quote multiple messages, then refer to the workarounds given below.
How to quote more than one message in a reply
As of now, Google Chat only supports one quoted message per reply. In lieu of official support for multi-message quotes, you will have to rely on what have now become traditional workaround methods for quoting messages in a reply. Here’s how to go about it:
Method 1: Using a Chrome extension
Before Google added an official ‘Quote in Reply’ button to Google Chat, one had to invariably resort to using a Chrome extension to get the same feature. The extension ‘Google Chat thread links & quote reply’ is what did it for most of us, and had the added benefit of quoting multiple messages in your reply. Here’s how to use it:
Open the Chrome Web Store on the Chrome browser and search for “Google Chat”.
From the list, select the extension with the title Google Chat thread links & quote reply.
Click on Add to Chrome to do so.
Select Add extension when prompted.
Once the extension is added, open the Google Chat app or website and select your conversation. Then hover over the message that you want to quote and select the ‘Quotes’ button (inverted commas).
This will add the message as part of your reply.
To add multiple messages as part of your reply, hover over another message and click on the same Quotes button.
The two messages will be added separately.
Once all the messages are added, enter your reply in the next line and hit Send.
The quoted messages will appear in separate boxes just above your own reply.
You can also quote only a portion of a message instead of the whole thing. To do this, simply highlight the bit that you want to quote and click on the “Quote” button.
This will quote only the highlighted portion of the message. Type up your message and hit Send.
You’ll see in the quote box only the highlighted portion of the message.
Method 2: Add markdown formatting to the messages
If you don’t want to add an extension to be able to add multiple quotes in your reply, you can instead add markdown formatting options such as Inline and Multi-line code blocks to the messages. Here’s how to go about it:
On Google Chat’s mobile app
Open the Google Chat app on your smartphone and select a conversation.
Then tap and hold a message.
Select Copy text.
Then tap and hold inside the text field and select Paste.
Now, insert a backtick
` before and after the message. This is the keyboard shortcut for adding an inline code block.
Then type your reply and hit Send.
Your quoted messages will be added as inline code blocks, followed by your own message.
To add a multi-line code block, insert three backticks
``` before and after the quoted message.
Then type your reply and hit Send.
Multi-line code blocks look slightly better the inline code blocks.
To quote multiple messages, copy and paste multiple lines of text and separate them by enclosing them within the inline or multi-line code blocks.
As before, type your message and hit Send. The quoted messages will appear as separate quoted messages within a single reply.
On the desktop web app
Though the keyboard shortcut for adding markdown formatting is the same, it’s a little easier on the desktop web app since you can copy and paste the messages with the mouse, and finding the backtick on a physical keyboard is also simpler (above the
So open a Google Chat conversation, copy the messages, paste them into the text field, and make sure to enclose them with a single backtick (for inline code blocks) or triple backticks (for multi-line code blocks).
Then type up your own reply and hit Send.
Just as before, your quoted messages will appear separately, followed by your own reply.
The end result may not look as neat as the official thing, or even the extension used earlier. However, it will highlight the messages that you want to quote differently from your own reply (and even allow you to quote multiple messages) and will basically serve the same function so others can understand that you’re adding context to your replies.
In this section, we take a look at a few commonly asked questions about using the Quote in Reply feature on Google Chat as well as the workaround methods for quoting multiple messages in a single reply.
How do you format quotes in Google Chat?
You can format previous messages as quotes by first copy-pasting the messages in the text field and then enclosing them with backticks (single backtick for inline code blocks, and triple backticks for multi-line code blocks). You can also Bold, Italicize, or Underline them by highlighting the messages and clicking on the A in the text field, and selecting your preferred formatting options. The format differences between the quoted text and your own will signal to others that you’re actually quoting their messages. For best results, however, we recommend sticking with the code blocks that can only be generated with the backtick keyboard shortcuts.
Can you quote your own messages in Google Chat?
Yes, you can quote any prior message in Google Chat to add context to your replies, even your own messages.
How do you quote a reply in Google Chat on Android?
To quote a reply in Google Chat on Android, simply tap and hold the message that you want to quote and select the ‘Quote in Reply’ option. Type your own reply and hit Send. The quoted messages will be highlighted in a box.
What happens when the original message gets deleted or edited?
In case the original message is deleted or edited, the quoted message doesn’t get updated in the reply. That means it will still display the original message as it was at the time of quoting it.
Google Chat’s ‘Quote in Reply’ feature has been a long time coming. Being able to quote messages will now allow users to give context to their replies and track the conversation better, and is definitely a welcome feature in Google Chat.