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Why would a text message not be delivered?

It can be very frustrating when our text doesn’t go through and we don’t even know the reason. But we got you covered in our article, here we are going to see the different reasons for “Why would a text message not be delivered?”

Our text messages may not be going for several different reasons and we will be checking all of them. We would suggest following the reasons in a linear sequence. But if you have an idea about the cause then you can skip to that section.

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Why would a text message not be delivered?
Why would a text message not be delivered?

Your message was flagged as spam by the recipient’s carrier

This is not very common but it can still happen if your number is flagged by the receiver’s carrier. When any phone number is flagged by the carrier as spam then the chances are that those messages do not get delivered. This feature is provided by carriers to protect their users from spam messages. This acts similarly to email spam protection where any suspicious mail gets in the spam folder. 

This may be the reason why your messages are not getting delivered. But we need to be sure that this is the reason. Here we have mentioned some of the reasons for any number getting flagged as spam:

  • You may be sharing suspicious links via messages that the carrier flags as spam. Generally, links are not marked as spam but if you use a URL shortener such as tiny.url orbit.ly then your number will be flagged as spam.
  • Your number will also be marked as spam if you send the same message again and again like an advertisement company.
  • If you are sending long messages again and again then also the carrier might not send the message. The limit for any text message is 160 characters, and you should stick with it only.
  •  NOTE: If you write a message with more than 160 characters then the message will not be delivered.
  • This is not very common but if you send messages in all caps like “HELLO THERE” then this will look suspicious. This will only happen if you use caps for the entire message.

You need a different type of phone number

If you are sending multiple messages to the same user for your business or promotion. Then you would need an A2P (application-to-person) number instead of a P2P (person-to-person). Whenever we get a number for personal use then it is a P2P type, and we will need an A2P for business use.

A2P phone numbers are used to send order details, billing confirmations, promotions/discounts, appointment reminders, and more. Now if you are sending clients text messages which you write on your own and are not the same/repetitive. Then it means that you are sending the text messages to clients as friends and do not need A2P. But if you are using a template and sending similar messages then you will need an A2P.

NOTE: If you are sending hundreds of text messages in a short period via P2P then your number will be blocked by the carrier.

If you are looking to get an A2C phone number/account then you should get in touch with your carrier.

You’re sending too many messages

This one should be obvious since we are sending too many messages to multiple users with a P2P (person-to-person) number. Then the carrier will flag you and stop your messages from reaching you. If you are using a B2P (business-to-person) number then this will not be a problem.

The limit for any normal P2P number is around 1 message per second. And if you are sending 100 text messages in under a minute then your number will be flagged. We would suggest you get an A2P (application-to-person) number that businesses use to send text messages to customers. Examples of these messages are Swiggy and Amazon messages about offers and order details.

The recipient opted out of messages

Most carriers provide a feature to opt-out of getting messages from any number. In OpenPhone, can be done by typing “STOP” but it depends from carrier to carrier. Once you opt-out of any text chain then you wouldn’t receive any more messages from that number.

The recipient blocked your phone number

This is very common since if the receiver blocker your number on their phone then your messages will not be delivered. The message will not get in the “Delivered” or “Read” state.

You can verify this by calling on the number if there’s no ring and the call gets disconnected instantly. Then unfortunately your number is blocked by the receiver and you will not be able to send any message.

The message contained illegal content

If you are trying to send any message which contains explicit content which is related to criminal activity. Then your messages would not be received and your number will be flagged. This is enforced by CTIA (Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association). It is the regulatory body that is responsible for enforcing all the guidelines.

If you think that your message had any explicit message then you must check for laws where the recipient is correctly located. You can also check online for what types of messages are not permitted.

You’re texting a landline

You may have sent the message to a telephone number that looks like a regular phone number. Some telephone numbers may look like phone numbers. And since telephone numbers can not receive messages, your message may not be getting delivered.

We would suggest checking the number once again and sending the message again.

Network problems with the recipient’s carrier

If you checked everything and still can not figure out why the message is not getting delivered. Then the receiver’s carrier may be having a problem. If this is the case then the receiver will not get any message from anyone.

Billing issue on the recipient’s carrier side

If the receiver’s account has any outstanding balance or issue with the payment then the carrier may stop messaging services. The carrier will stop all incoming calls and messages until the outstanding payment is settled.

Recipient reported your message to their carrier

There’s a possibility that the receiver reported your message as inappropriate or spam to the carrier. If this is the case then you will not be able to send a message to that person and your number will be blocked.

This is also possible that the receiver reported another message which was similar to yours as inappropriate and the carrier blocked your message accidentally or on purpose.

You’ve entered a wrong number

This happens to all of us, we type the number in hurry and accidentally put the wrong number. If you type the receiver’s number manually then make sure it’s correct. Along with it, make sure that the country code is also correct if you are sending a message to a recipient in a different region.

Are you sure it wasn’t delivered?

This may seem very unlikely cause but sometimes the message may not get delivered. This can cause due to server failure or server maintenance. An example would be the Facebook blackout where all messages were not getting delivered.

If you are using a popular social media or messaging app then you can find news about it. But if you are using a less popular app then you can check it by using different accounts. This is not very common but still a possibility.

Fix Google messages

If you are using Google messages and facing problems with sending or receiving messages then follow these steps. NOTE: If there is an update available then download it and then follow the steps.

  • Check if the SIM in your device is aligned properly, remove and insert it again to be sure.
  • Check if Google Messages is set as default, if not then change it to default. You can learn more about steps for making Messages as default from here.
  • If you are new to Messages and facing problems, then make sure that your carrier supports SMS, RCS, and MMS.
  • If sending and receiving messages suddenly stop, then the carrier credit balance may be low. (Check if you used your message limit.)
  • It’s possible that your phone may be on airplane mode or not have a strong connection.

NOTE: If you are switching from iMessages to Google Message, make sure iMessage is deactivated. You can find more information here about deactivating iMessage.

Fix problems sending or receiving messages from specific contacts

If you are facing a problem in sending/receiving for a specific contact, then follow these steps:

  1. Open Google Messages, delete the contact with which you are facing a problem and add it again. Check if the contact number is correct, try calling to verify.
  2. If still the issue is not resolved, then check if the country code is correct for the contact. (Example, the country code for the US is +1).
  3. If your issue is still not resolved, check if your number is not blocked.

Fix iMessage

If you are using iMessage then there’s a simple fix for it.

Sign out and in

  1. Wake up your iPhone and go to “Settings”.
  2. Inside settings, find and tap on “Messages” and then tap on “Send & Recieve”.
  3. Now tap on your ID and you should see the button for sign out, tap on it and wait for it to complete.
  4. Once sign-out is complete, all your details will disappear.
  5. Now use your Apple ID and sign in back, and your problem should be solved.

Why does iMessage say “Delivered” when it’s not!?

If you send someone a message and they insist that it never came then don’t think they are lying. Sometimes the message may be delivered to another device that has the same Apple ID. This can happen if the recipient has multiple devices with the same Apple ID. This should not be a problem since all devices should get the message. But sometimes it can happen and only one device got the message.

Aside from this, there can be multiple reasons for messages not being delivered but shown as delivered. However, this is not very common since Apple services are robust and don’t cause problems. You should check if the receiver got the message on another device and not at all. (It’s possible that the recipient deleted the message without notice.

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