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I am looking for an Android instant messaging app that stores all chat messages in plain text format in my phone's internal storage or SD card. The availability of messages in plain text format is important because I want to be able to regularly and automatically backup/sync all my chat messages in a human-readable format. I do not want my data to be locked into the chat app, where I have to regularly jump through hoops to obtain plain text records of all my chat messages.

Additional criteria:

  • Free and open source.
  • Support end-to-end encryption.
  • Able to send and receive images, in which case the images should also be directly accessible on file system.

Note: The plain text chat messages need not be importable into a different app. The important thing is that the chat messages are stored in plain text that can easily be synced and read using a text editor elsewhere.

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  • If the chats are in plain text this does not mean you can load them in a different app. Data has to be structured to be read by an application, and if two apps don't use the same data format you are still locked in the app even with a plain text format (because chats are not just simple texts), you have a timestamp, a definition auf a sender (you or someone else), embedded images and their encoding and so on. You better search for an open source chat app with well documented storage format and existing converters.
    – Robert
    Apr 11, 2023 at 13:52
  • @Robert I don't need to be able to import the plain text messages into another chat app. I need the messages to be in plain text so that I can easily backup and read the chats.
    – Flux
    Apr 11, 2023 at 17:36
  • But you said that you "avoid being locked into the chat app." - this implies you can import the chats in a different app. Anyway the only plain text format I know is the "mbox format" which is used by some mail programs. But even this format does not fully allow to read everything directly, as the message order is not preserved within the file and deleted messages are kept until purged or overwritten.
    – Robert
    Apr 11, 2023 at 17:38
  • @Robert Okay, thank you for the helpful comments. I have edited the question to clarify the requirements.
    – Flux
    Apr 13, 2023 at 14:35

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