When it comes to the text messages on your iPhone, colour is very important. When you use iMessage to send a text, it shows up in a blue bubble.
If all of your texts are in green bubbles, either you’re only texting with Android users, since Android doesn’t support iMessage, or your phone’s iMessage feature isn’t working.
Here’s how to fix iMessage when it doesn’t work.
What is an iMessage?
iMessages are texts, photos, and videos that can be sent between iPhones, iPads, iPod touches, and Macs using Wi-Fi or a cellular network. iMessages are encrypted and have a blue colour that is unique to them.
How to fix iMessage if it doesn’t work
If your iMessage doesn’t work right, you won’t be able to take advantage of a couple of the best things about it over regular SMS texting.
iMessages are sent and received like any other data over the internet, so they don’t use up your text plan. They are also encrypted from end to end, sync across all your Apple devices, and let you see when the other person is typing.
All of these features only work with people who also have an iPhone. But if that doesn’t work and your messages with other Apple users show up in green bubbles, it’s time to figure out what’s wrong.
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See if iMessage isn’t working.
There’s a chance that Apple is having trouble with iMessage. Visit Apple’s System Status page to find out. Here, you can check to see if services like iMessage, FaceTime, and others are having known technical issues.
Make sure you can connect to the internet.
If you aren’t sure if your internet connection is working right, it’s a good idea to check it again. In theory, iMessage should switch to cellular if your Wi-Fi doesn’t work, but something could have gone wrong.
Check out our guide to see how to fix an iPhone that keeps getting kicked off WiFi.
1. Open the Settings app and tap the Wi-Fi button.
2. Turn off Wi-Fi by swiping the button to the left. After a moment, swipe the button to the right to turn it back on.
If you are having trouble connecting, turning your Wi-Fi off and on again might help.
3. Go back to the main page of Settings and tap Cellular.
4. Swipe the button to the left to turn off your cellular data, wait a moment, and then swipe it to the right to turn it back on.
A quick tip: On this page, you can see how much cellular data you’ve used. Make sure you have enough data to be able to send iMessages when Wi-Fi isn’t working.
5. Make sure that the top of your iPhone screen shows both the Wi-Fi and cellular icons.
Find out if the problem is coming from you or from someone else.
Keep in mind that if iMessage doesn’t work, the problem could be with your iPhone or with the person you’re trying to message.
Is iMessage not working for just one iPhone user or for everyone you text on an iPhone? If you need to, send a short text message to a few people to find out if the problem only affects one person or everyone.
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Make sure your iPhone is set up for iMessage.
Your phone might not be on the list of devices that can use iMessage because iMessage is set up wrong.
1. Open the Settings app and click on Messages.
2. Select Send and Receive.
3. Make sure your iPhone’s phone number is chosen in both sections of the page, but especially in the Start New Conversations From section.
A quick tip: Make sure that iMessage is also turned on for all of your other Apple devices.
If all your settings are right, turning off and on the whole iMessage service might fix the problem.
1. Open the Settings app and click on Messages.
2. Swipe the button to the left to turn off iMessage.
3. Turn off your iPhone and then turn it back on.
4. Go back to the Settings app, tap Messages, and swipe the button to the right to turn on iMessage again.
5. If that doesn’t fix the problem, sign out of your Apple ID and then sign back in.
Quick tip: Delete old iPhone messages to keep your phone from getting too crowded.
Make sure you have the latest software.
Make sure your iPhone is running the most recent version of iOS, whether it’s because of iMessages or because it’s acting up in some other way.
Reset your network settings
Your phone’s network settings can sometimes get messed up, which can make iMessage and other online services hard to use.
As a last resort, you can turn off and then back on your network settings. However, this will delete your saved Wi-Fi networks and passwords, so you’ll have to enter them again.
1. Open the Settings app and then tap General.
2. Tap Transfer or Reset iPhone.
3. Tap Reset.
4. Tap Reset Network Settings in the pop-up window and make sure you want to do this.
Contact Apple’s Help Desk
When everything else fails, it’s time to ask the experts. Check out our help page to learn how to get in touch with Apple Support.