Send an iMessage as a Text Message Instead with a Quick Tap & Hold
iMessage is undeniably great, but it’s not without it’s own set of problems (coincidentally, at the time of writing, iMessage happens to be down), and even when it is working there are times when trying to send a message through iMessage is slower than text messages, or they won’t deliver at all because of a poor cell signal. If you’ve ran into the latter problem before you’re familiar with the infinite “Sending” bar that never moves until you’re back in a better cell reception area.
The next time you find an iMessage unable to send, or you just want to send an SMS for some reason:
- Tap on the blue message and choose select “Send as Text Message” from the popup menu
Note: With iOS text-to-speech enabled you will need to tap the > arrow button to reveal this option
The message should immediately send as a text, which can be identified as such because the speech bubble will appear as green rather than blue. SMS has the wonderful advantage of working under just about any reception situation, and of course it works when Apple’s iMessage servers are down too.
Do be aware that by sending messages as text SMS rather than over iMessage you man incur charges with your cell provider, depending on what your text messaging plan allows for. Though many carriers offer unlimited texting plans, many users have downsized their general SMS plans if not canceled them outright, and began to rely instead on iMessage exclusively, which is free. Obviously that has the benefit of reducing a phone bill, but it’s possible that your cellular carrier will start charging you for each sent text messages on a per-SMS basis, which can add up quick to an expensive bill if you’re not cautious. Ultimately that potential just means you should be cautious of sending messages as texts like this, since even if you have unlimited SMS the recipient may not.
This appears to be an iOS 6+ feature, and you shouldn’t have to use it often, unless you’re frequently in areas with bad cell coverage, iMessage is down, or you somehow didn’t set it up properly to begin with.