iMessage is a service used by almost every iPhone user, whether they’re aware of it or not. For those in the latter category, iMessage is your iPhone’s way of communicating with other iPhones. Ever notice how when communicating with other iPhone users your text bubbles are blue, whereas with other handsets it’s green? That change in colour means iMessage is doing its thing.
So, what happens when you leave Apple’s iOS and decide to try out a different brand? In theory, your former iPhone pals should now simply be sending you texts instead (because, you know, they have to) and you become just another green bubble to them. Except that’s apparently not what’s been happening.
There have been a slew of complaints, for some time now, that iMessage deserters have been unable to receive text messages. In this weird communications-limbo, neither the party sending the text nor the party hoping to receive it is aware there is a problem. Messages display as ‘sent’ on the iPhone user’s handset, whilst the now ex-iPhone user is none the wiser to any attempts at contact.
The problem is that, apparently, the iPhones sending these messages are sometimes unaware that numbers they formerly acknowledged as iOS devices are now Android (or Windows Phone, or BlackBerry, or any other OS). Even after tinkering around in settings menus and manually telling the iPhone that this is the case, people have still reported problems.
Obviously, this is bad. Apple has now come out and stated that it has fixed a server issue which was a factor in these communications breakdowns. It’s also stated that there’s more problems which need to be remedied before the issue can be completely resolved, though, and that they’re working on them. A nondescript ‘future software update’ should see it all taken care of. We’ll be sure to let you know when it rolls out.
Until then, if you plan on leaving iOS be sure to disable iMessage before you make the switch. Maybe even notify your iMessage-using amigos that you’re doing so so that they can tell their phone that you’re leaving, too.