Last year I had a couple friends that would like to text me to stay in touch. If I'm being honest, I actually warmed up to texting. It was an extremely easy way for me to find out what friends were doing and get a quick answer to a question such as the ingredients to one of my favorite drinks. I have AT&T Broadband Wireless service and a Sierra Wireless 881 PCMCIA card that I would use to send texts. I found that I had a charge of $0.20 per text. Until I found this great little service.
Joopz allows you to register your number with them and send out texts from a web interface. They must use a shared pool of SMS accounts to send the messages from as I've heard from friends that one downside is that it doesn't always come from my phone number (I think this is just a glitch in the software, I would imagine that it should insert your number in the "from" field, almost a form of spoofing an SMS number). This is ok to me though, because as friends reply it returns to the Joopz pooled accounts and then finds it's way back to me. The best part about this is that I can text (sometimes) delivering it as my number, and I don't get charged for sending or receiving texts through my AT&T service.
Joopz let's you send 50 free incoming / outgoing texts per month, or you can sign up for $20 for the year of unlimited texting!
It's worked pretty well for me. Sure I don't get incoming texts as fast as I used to, since I have to check the web interface to see if anyone has responded to an open conversation, but for the price, it works for me!