When comparing Disa vs Handcent Next SMS, the Slant community recommends Disa for most people. In the question“What are the best messaging apps for Android?” Disa is ranked 15th while Handcent Next SMS is ranked 35th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Does what it's supposed to do, without bloatware
Pro Open source plugin API
Everyone can develop their own plug-ins.
Pro Easy to use
Disa is very easy to use and has an open source API, so many new services will be added soon.
Pro Customizable notifications
Ability to set different notification sound/vibration/led based on the plugin.
Pro Unified conversations
Ability to merge conversations from the same contact on different services.
Pro Friendly developers and generally good G+ community
Fast, decent replies to questions, even if they've been asked before.
Pro Many requested features
The developer team does actually listen to the community and adds requested features.
Pro Pushbullet support
Disa works great with Pushbullet, allowing you to answer from your PC.
Pro Many languages
Help and support in many languages.
Pro Disa takes privacy much more serious
Currently, the Disa team knows less about you than the website you're currently visiting.
Pro Great material design
With color-changing design with custom colors for each service.
Pro Can split a group text
Splitting a group text is a great option, so that follow-up can be personal and not everyone sees every response.
Pro Missed notification reminders
Pro Can text from a PC, Mac or tablet
Texting from another device allows one to not pick up one's phone every minute.
Pro Customizable appearance
Con Doesn't support most messaging apps
Con Doesn't support WhatsApp at the moment
Con Does not support Google SMS
Con Attaching pictures suddenly failed; no working solution.
Con Disa doesn't follow the Google Design Guidelines
Hamburger Menu/Navigation Drawer (Side Menu):
Maybe a Launch screen?:
Con Closed source
Disa is closed source, so the development speed is capped of their team, no external developer can help or add features that are not on the route of the team.
Con Smaller development team leading somewhat slow implementation of requested features
Though the main development (framework, etc) is moving along fine, things like quick reply and sending multiple images at once should've been in quicker.
Con Constantly asks to re-authenticate WhatsApp
Con Doesn't let you customize notifications per conversation or contact
Con Name is confusing
In your app drawer you'll see "Next SMS" but in Google Play "Handcent" is the first word of the app. That might confuse some people.