charge for incoming iMessages

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charge for incoming iMessages

It seems my wife and I are being charged for incoming iMessages. We both have iPhones with IOS 5.0 (now 5.1) installed and have iMessage turned on.  When I send her a message, her name turns blue and the message is in blue.  The same thing happens when she sends me a message from her phone.  However, when I view my online charges at ATT.com, all the incoming messages are labeled "Text/IM messaging" and "1Msg" shows up in the "Msg/Kb/Min" column.  I see the same thing when I send a text to another friend who does not have an iPhone with IOS 5.0.  We haven't gotten a paper bill yet.
 
Outgoing messages sent using iMessage appear in blue on the phone, are labeled "Internet/MEdia Net" on AT&T's website and the column labeled "Msg/Kb/Min" lists the number of bytes set, for example 82KB.  I'm assuming that these are free.
 
I searched the forums and Apple's Support, but see little or no discussion about incoming iMessages, only sending messages.  Are incoming messages all treated as SMS text messages, and will I be charged for them?  I am on the pay per text plan, so this matters to me.  I had thought that all iMessages would be free between Apple devices, but perhaps that's not the case.

Message 1 of 25 (27,361 Views)
Master

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

They should not count but the first message may as the phones do need to determine if both devices support iMessage. I would turn off iMessage in both phones then reenable. A reboot may also help. Hold the on/off key and home button for 8 to 10 seconds until you see the apple logo.
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Message 2 of 25 (27,333 Views)
ACE - Professor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

Did you turn off the "send as SMS" option?

*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 3 of 25 (27,315 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

Any iMessage sent via the cellular data network (not wifi) will count against your data plan. That should account for those  labeled "Internet/MEdia Net".

*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 4 of 25 (27,306 Views)
Tutor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

I have "send as SMS" turned off on my phone (3GS), as I pay for every text.  My wife's is turned on as she can send 200 messages per month without additional charges.

Message 5 of 25 (27,273 Views)
Tutor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

Thanks for your reply.  Do you have a source where I can confirm this?  I haven't seen any documentation that says that using the cellular network and not wifi will count against my data plan when receiving an iMessage.  Apple's website says:

 

"You can send unlimited text messages via Wi-Fi or 3G from your iPad, iPhone, or iPond touch to anyone with one of those devices"

 

Now that I read this again, it doesn't say anything about receiving these messages, does it?  And that was my original question.

 

I'm still confused about this issue.

Message 6 of 25 (27,277 Views)
ACE - Professor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages


BiknSwans wrote:

Thanks for your reply.  Do you have a source where I can confirm this?  I haven't seen any documentation that says that using the cellular network and not wifi will count against my data plan when receiving an iMessage.  Apple's website says:

 

"You can send unlimited text messages via Wi-Fi or 3G from your iPad, iPhone, or iPond touch to anyone with one of those devices"

 

Now that I read this again, it doesn't say anything about receiving these messages, does it?  And that was my original question.

 

I'm still confused about this issue.


When you send a message via iMessage, if it is sent via 3G, that uses cellular data. Cellular data is charged both up and down, for a device. So when you receive an iMessage, your phone is using data (either cellular, or wifi if you are on wifi) to recive the message.

 

Note that on the AT&T detailed data use bill, all traffic is indicated as "sent" regardless of if it was sent or received from your phone- that's just an artifact of the report.

 

If iMessage cannot send the message via data (either cell or wifi) it will fall back to SMS, unless you have told it not to.

*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 7 of 25 (27,273 Views)
Tutor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

I understand that if I use 3G for sending or receiving iMessages and not Wi-Fi, I will be charged for data use.  However, data use in my case is not a problem as I will probably never use 300Gb of data in a month.  I will get charged for every text message, 20 cents per message.  The 20 cents per message is what I'm concerned about.  My online review of my usage indicates to me that I will be charged 20 cents for every incoming message, whether it was sent using iMessage or not (SMS).  My understanding was that I should not be charged 20 cents for an iMessage whether it is sent or received or whether 3G or Wi-Fi was used.

 

My online usage details display different line items for sent and received iMessages or SMS messages.

 

A typical message sent by me says "Internet/MEdia Net  Sent  8KB"

 

A typical message I receive says "Text/IM Messaging  Received 1Msg".  It looks the same whether the message was sent as an iMessage OR an SMS message.

 

If I find that I am charged for incoming iMessages, we will just use the phone instead as there is no charge for AT&T to AT&T calls.  

Message 8 of 25 (27,270 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: charge for incoming iMessages


BiknSwans wrote:

Thanks for your reply.  Do you have a source where I can confirm this?  I haven't seen any documentation that says that using the cellular network and not wifi will count against my data plan when receiving an iMessage.  Apple's website says:

 

"You can send unlimited text messages via Wi-Fi or 3G from your iPad, iPhone, or iPond touch to anyone with one of those devices"

 

Now that I read this again, it doesn't say anything about receiving these messages, does it?  And that was my original question.

 

I'm still confused about this issue.


Actually, Apple's site does sort of confirm this. On this web page on iMessage near the bottom is this: "*Normal carrier data rates may apply. Messages may be sent as SMS when iMessage is unavailable; carrier messaging fees apply."

 

"Normal carrier data rates may apply" is just another way of saying sending via iMessage while on 3g will count your data plan.

*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 9 of 25 (27,272 Views)
Tutor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

I think I understand the cost of sending iMessages.  I have the option of sending SMS messages turned off.  Either the message will not get sent or it will be free, unless I exceed my data allowance of 300GB.  If the bubble turns blue, I won't get charged and the online usage indicates this.

 

It's the incoming message cost that's got me stumped.  The Apple text you quoted does not address incoming messages at all the way I read it.

 

"*Normal carrier data rates may apply."  -  I have no worries about paying for data.  I am concerned about the 20 cents per message cost, if applicable.

 

"Messages may be sent as SMS when iMessage is unavailable; carrier messaging fees apply."  -  I'm not concerned with outgoing messages, just incoming.

 

Will I be charged 20 cents for incoming iMessages or not?

Message 10 of 25 (27,269 Views)
ACE - Master
Solution
Accepted by topic author BiknSwans
‎09-30-2015 1:39 AM

Re: charge for incoming iMessages


BiknSwans wrote:

I understand that if I use 3G for sending or receiving iMessages and not Wi-Fi, I will be charged for data use.  However, data use in my case is not a problem as I will probably never use 300Gb of data in a month.  I will get charged for every text message, 20 cents per message.  The 20 cents per message is what I'm concerned about.  My online review of my usage indicates to me that I will be charged 20 cents for every incoming message, whether it was sent using iMessage or not (SMS).  My understanding was that I should not be charged 20 cents for an iMessage whether it is sent or received or whether 3G or Wi-Fi was used.

 

My online usage details display different line items for sent and received iMessages or SMS messages.

 

A typical message sent by me says "Internet/MEdia Net  Sent  8KB"

 

A typical message I receive says "Text/IM Messaging  Received 1Msg".  It looks the same whether the message was sent as an iMessage OR an SMS message.

 

If I find that I am charged for incoming iMessages, we will just use the phone instead as there is no charge for AT&T to AT&T calls.  


My wife and I both have iphones also and I have confirmed that every message that my phone shows as having been sent or received via iMessage shows as "Internet/MEdia Net" on my online usage and those the phone shows as having been sent or received via SMS/MMS show as "Text/IM Messaging", so if you are sure that iMessages are being billed as "Text/IM Messaging", you may have a billing problem. One thing you can do is make sure that "Send as SMS" is turned off on both your phones. Since we have a texting plan, we aren't concerned about whether messages go via iMessage or SMS but I've found that sometimes I will receive a message twice, once via iMessage and also via SMS.

*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 11 of 25 (27,095 Views)
ACE - Master

Re: charge for incoming iMessages


BiknSwans wrote:

Will I be charged 20 cents for incoming iMessages or not?



No, you should not be charged 20 cents for any iMessage and it does not matter whether it is incoming or outgoing.

*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 12 of 25 (27,091 Views)
Tutor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages


sandblaster wrote:

My wife and I both have iphones also and I have confirmed that every message that my phone shows as having been sent or received via iMessage shows as "Internet/MEdia Net" on my online usage and those the phone shows as having been sent or received via SMS/MMS show as "Text/IM Messaging", so if you are sure that iMessages are being billed as "Text/IM Messaging", you may have a billing problem. One thing you can do is make sure that "Send as SMS" is turned off on both your phones. Since we have a texting plan, we aren't concerned about whether messages go via iMessage or SMS but I've found that sometimes I will receive a message twice, once via iMessage and also via SMS.



Thanks.  That's very useful information.  I'll make sure SMS is turned off on both phones and see what happens.  Right now, SMS is off on my phone and on on my wife's.  Maybe all her iMessages are actually being sent as SMS and that's the problem, but I don't think so.  I'll get back with the results ASAP, probably tomorrow.

Message 13 of 25 (27,074 Views)
Tutor

Re: charge for incoming iMessages


sandblaster wrote:
No, you should not be charged 20 cents for any iMessage and it does not matter whether it is incoming or outgoing.


I believe you are right.  I was once again looking at our usage on AT&T's website and tried to compare it to what I could see on my iPhone.  I had cleared most of the messages on my iPhone, but not all.  I noticed that the messages I got from my wife don't show up at all on AT&T's website.  I apologize for not seeing this before and I'm not sure how I missed that.  All of the incoming messages that do show up on AT&T's website are from iPhones, but they are from other friends and apparently those phones don't have iMessage turned on.

 

I need to do a better job of educating my friends, and myself.  Thanks again for your help.

 

 

Message 14 of 25 (27,072 Views)
Guru

Re: charge for incoming iMessages

IMessages can be sent even when you are not on wifi. When I send iMessages they do not show up on my bill.
Message 15 of 25 (27,065 Views)
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