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Won't send text messages


Won't send text messages

Even though I have 3 bars of service my iphone won't send imessages or regular text messages. The phone is not on airplane mode and I have tried restarting the phone as well. Any suggestions?

Message 1 of 39

Accepted Solutions
Community Support

Re: Won't send text messages

Thanks to everyone in the community for the great discussion around this issue. There have been some great responses, and we wanted to combine all the great information into a single response to assist you.


You should be able to resolve most messaging issues by following the steps below.


Ensure you have at least 2 bars of signal strength and your phone displays AT&T.
For a walkthrough specific to your device, check out the AT&T Troubleshoot & Resolve Tool at


Step 1: Make sure you are able to make and receive phone calls. If voice calls are not working, most likely there is a larger issue.


Step 2: Ensure WIFI is disabled on your device. Although some devices can send messages over WIFI, for troubleshooting we want to be on only the AT&T network. MMS, including Group Messages, requires cellular data to work.


Step 3: When sending the message, make sure you are using 10 digits. The 10 digit format is the area code (3 digits) followed by the phone number (7 digits).


  • Note: For international messages, use the plus sign (+), country code, then the wireless number. If you are sending a message to an email address, make sure the email address is in the right format such as and that the email recipient can receive other emails.


Step 4: Did you recently switch from an Apple iPhone to a non-Apple phone? If yes, please ensure you have deregistered from Apple iMessage ( If no, please skip this step.


Step 5: Check the phone settings:


  • A. If an option, ensure SMS and MMS are both turned on.
  • Check the phone’s block list or call reject list and ensure the number you are trying to message with is not on the list.
  • If the phone supports it, make sure Do Not Disturb is not turned on.
  • If your phone is asking for a Message Center Number, it should be +13123149810


Step 6: Try powering the phone completely off and then back on to ensure your phone has a fresh registration with the network in your current location.


Step 7: Check for software updates to your phone. We always recommend running the latest software version to ensure the best device performance.


For device how-to information:
Check out the AT&T Device Support Center at


If you are still unable to resolve your messaging issue after these steps, please send us a Private Message to assist.


Thank you!


Kevin, AT&T Community Specialist

Employee Contributor*
*I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Tags (1)
Message 18 of 39

All Replies

Re: Won't send text messages

Go to settings>messages and make sure everything is on.  


If it is, try resetting your network settings

Settings>General>reset>reset network settings.  


If that still fails, call ATT directly and ask them to recheck your account setup and verify that SMS message have not been turned off.


For service or support questions including existing order status, call:
Customer Support: 1-800-331-0500

Information on iPhone unlocking can be found here by copying this link into your browser:
Message 2 of 39

Re: Won't send text messages

We have two phone with the same problems for the past 6 days AT&T has let us down totally from online customer service even went to AT7T centers they state a few other states are experiencing this as well. Now we cannot use the internet at all without being home. Total let down.
Message 3 of 39

Re: Won't send text messages

Hello @skent14 and @Seriously let down , are you still having problems with sending texts? If so, send us a private message by clicking here. Include your full name, account number, contact information and the best time you can be reached. Our awesome team of managers will gladly help!

Did a post have a solution that worked for you? Help other people find solutions faster by marking posts that helped you as an "Accepted Solution". Learn about accepted solutions here.

Employee Contributor*
*I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Message 4 of 39

Re: Won't send text messages


Just wondering anyone was ever able to fix the problem? I'm having a similar problem where I can't send iMessages or make calls from my home. 



Message 5 of 39
ACE - Master

Re: Won't send text messages

Murka13 wrote:


Just wondering anyone was ever able to fix the problem? I'm having a similar problem where I can't send iMessages or make calls from my home. 



Are you only having problems with iMessage and not SMS messages?  When you have iMessage activated, the only real portion of the process that is handled by AT&T is the data transmission.  The Apple iMessage servers are the ones which send the message to the other phone or detect that it it not an iPhone (or iMessage is disabled) and routes the messages out to the cellular network as SMS messages.


I would test your iPhone my rutning off iMessage ans seeing if it is able to send as SMS or not.  If you can send as SMS, then I would try contacting Apple support to see if they can assist you.  SImilarly, once you activate iMessage, it the messages fail, it is Apple's servers that are failing so I would try contacting Apple to see if they can assist you.  AT&T can't really do much to help you with iMessage because the infrastructure ofr that is owned and controlled by Apple.

Jerry B.


For additional help, please send a PM to ATTCustomerCare.
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 6 of 39

Re: Won't send text messages


I also have a similar problem with sending text messages especially to some countries in Western Europe.

I can receive the messages though from the people that i cannot send too.

I would also like to point out that this does not only affect People with IPhones. I tried different SIM Cards in 4 different Droids. Same Problem and yes the SMS Service Center Number is correct. Verifed by AT&T's finest.

After spending numerous hours with AT&T on the phone (which was a waste of time since the first wave of Customer Service that AT&T throws at you has problems tying their shoe laces in the morning) I decided to search the Internet for a solution only to find out that there is a mass of AT&T Customers with similar issues.

It doesn't matter if the receiving party is with Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, T-Mobile Austria, Vodafone Germany, E-Plus-Germany, A1-Austria, Telering  and these are only a few on my list.

AT&T Customer Service keeps insisting that they do not have a Problem but that the Problem lies solely by every other provider in the world. Arrogance at it's highest level.

Now my Relatives and Friends in the US and Oversees are contacting their Providers in order to get an AT&TIssue figured out. Pathetic!


People get charged for Text Messages (20 cents per SMS or more) that never arrive at their destination and as far as i am concerned AT&T is conducting false advertisment.

This is by no means Global Coverage unless some Brainsurgeons at AT&T are under the impression that Europe and numerous other Countries are not located on the same Globe as they are. On second thought they might be right since they are way out there.

To bad that i live in an area that has limited Carrier Choices so switching creates some other Issues otherwise i would have cancelled my Contract a long time ago.

Signed: One very satisfied Customer.



[Legal discussions are not permitted per the Guidelines]

Message 7 of 39

Re: Won't send text messages

My phone has been acting really crappy lately. My messages keep failing. My Facebook app won't work when connected to wifi. My phone is just dragging in general. I've tried everything including a complete factory reset. I'm fed up having a phone with limited use.
Message 8 of 39

Re: Won't send text messages

Before it used to happen sometimes, it's started happening a lot recently. When I hit the send button, it shows me the little circular wheel spinning (trying to send) and then rings as though I got an SMS. When I check the phone, it shows the message failed with the exclamation mark on the left. When I click on the mark, it says



Failed to send

Failed to send message to [CONTACT-NAME]. Try again?





When I try again, the same thing happens. 


Message 9 of 39

Re: Won't send text messages

So , I just called att and they said its a issue with all adroid phones. and working on fixing it. There is not spcific date when it will get fixed. 

Message 10 of 39
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