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Old Apr 15, 2012, 11:23 PM   #1
saintforlife
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Can you text internationally for free with iMessage?

I have friends in Asia and wondering if I can text them without using international texting rates? Kinda like BBM.

Also how can you make sure it always sends an iMessage because sometimes I've seen iMessages go through as regular SMSes. I don't want that to happen for international texting.
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Old Apr 15, 2012, 11:31 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saintforlife View Post
I have friends in Asia and wondering if I can text them without using international texting rates? Kinda like BBM.
As long as they have iMessage too, then there should be no extra charge. It'll just use data.

Quote:
Also how can you make sure it always sends an iMessage because sometimes I've seen iMessages go through as regular SMSes. I don't want that to happen for international texting.
In Settings -> Messages, turn "Send as SMS" off.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 01:55 AM   #3
saintforlife
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Thanks!
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 01:31 PM   #4
gngan
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It really depends on both sides. If you have a data plan and your friend has a data plan then you will/can use iMessage. If your friend has no data plan then you will be sending international SMS rate.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 02:29 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by gngan View Post
It really depends on both sides. If you have a data plan and your friend has a data plan then you will/can use iMessage. If your friend has no data plan then you will be sending international SMS rate.
You don't need a data plan to send or receive iMessages. Just have to turn off "send as sms" so that it doesn't revert to sending it as a regular text rather then an iMessage when they aren't on wifi.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 02:43 PM   #6
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How about sending a message while connected to wifi? In that case if you don't have a data plan then what happens?
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 02:46 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by gaanee View Post
How about sending a message while connected to wifi? In that case if you don't have a data plan then what happens?
WiFi is fine, it uses that then. No need for data plan.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 02:53 PM   #8
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I don't have a data plan and I noticed that when I send a text message while connected to wifi, At&t charges for it. Also when I receive a message while not connected to wifi then does it use SMS service and does At&t charge separately for this?
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 03:01 PM   #9
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If you don't have a data plan, and are not connected to WiFi, you definitely are not using iMessage, hence AT&T will charge for your text messages. And even if you are connected to WiFi, you need to use iMessage to not get charged. If you send normal text messages, AT&T will of course charge for them.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 03:25 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by gaanee View Post
I don't have a data plan and I noticed that when I send a text message while connected to wifi, At&t charges for it. Also when I receive a message while not connected to wifi then does it use SMS service and does At&t charge separately for this?
Is your iPhone on 5.0+? Do you have a texting plan? If you don't have a texting plan then yes they will charge for texts.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 09:39 PM   #11
gngan
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As I said, it depends on both sides. If both of you are connected to WIFI or have data plan then it will use iMessage. If both of you or either one of you are NOT connected to WIFI or have a data plan then it will use normal SMS.

Or like what Jordan921 said, you can turn off "send as sms" and it should only send as iMessage but you won't send any other normal SMS.
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Last edited by gngan; Apr 16, 2012 at 09:53 PM.
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 09:44 PM   #12
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Better to get whatsapp so it's definitely free texting with friends overseas
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 09:58 PM   #13
sal
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A note: if you are on your iPhone and send an iMessage to your friend's phone number instead of email, it will be sent as an SMS. To confirm that, your friend will see your phone number as the sender.

If your friend initiates the conversation and send a iMessage to your email associated with your itunes account and you reply. It will not be sent as an SMS.

I have not yet figured out how to send an iMessage from my iPhone and have it come from my email address instead of my phone number.

Of course this all assumes you have turned off send as SMS in your preferences and you've enabled the "receive at" to include your email
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Old Apr 16, 2012, 10:39 PM   #14
gngan
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Originally Posted by sal View Post
A note: if you are on your iPhone and send an iMessage to your friend's phone number instead of email, it will be sent as an SMS. To confirm that, your friend will see your phone number as the sender.
That's wrong. You will still get as a iMessage as long as both of the users are connected to internet (wifi/3g).
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Old Oct 6, 2012, 03:03 PM   #15
gangnamstyle!!
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Yes. But also, you both need to have iPhones of course for it to work.
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Old Oct 6, 2012, 03:59 PM   #16
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Old Oct 6, 2012, 04:01 PM   #17
Nicolas4ever
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if you both have an iPhone with imessage enabled you can even text for free if your friend lives on Mars lol
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Old Oct 6, 2012, 04:05 PM   #18
wordoflife
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Just to be safe, I'd give each your imessage email addresses so they don't get sent as a text or something, because occasionally they do.
Sure you could disable the option, but its useful for many in country texts too.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 07:57 PM   #19
nonabear92
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i think this may help...

Quote:
Originally Posted by sal View Post
A note: if you are on your iPhone and send an iMessage to your friend's phone number instead of email, it will be sent as an SMS. To confirm that, your friend will see your phone number as the sender.

If your friend initiates the conversation and send a iMessage to your email associated with your itunes account and you reply. It will not be sent as an SMS.

I have not yet figured out how to send an iMessage from my iPhone and have it come from my email address instead of my phone number.

Of course this all assumes you have turned off send as SMS in your preferences and you've enabled the "receive at" to include your email
If you go into Settings > Messages > [scroll down to] Receive At

Click on that, and you can add an email address, and I guess you can set a preference to receive at that address instead of your phone number.
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Old May 25, 2014, 09:37 PM   #20
Cali14
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If anyone sees this, and knows anything about iMessage please answer!
I have an iPhone5 and Sprint as my carrier, with UNLIMITED data and text but NO international calling or texting plan. Im in the US so if I use iMessage to send text messages to my friend who lives in Ireland UK and also using iPhone5c with iMessage that's iOS 5+, will there be absolutely no additiional charges by Sprint regardless of whether I am connected to Wi-Fi or Sprint's network 3G? As long as we both have iPhones and are using iMessage, is that correct?
(I don't always have a wifi connection so most times I'm using my 3G)

Any info is greatly appreciated, thanks.
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Old May 25, 2014, 10:10 PM   #21
Afbar1114
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I believe as long as it stays blue yes. Because it's not a SMS. it uses data to send them
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Old May 25, 2014, 10:17 PM   #22
Harmonious Zen
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Originally Posted by Afbar1114 View Post
I believe as long as it stays blue yes. Because it's not a SMS. it uses data to send them
This. Everyone else's response is making this issue more complicated than it needs to be.

iMessages will be blue. This uses data and not your SMS. So long as the message you're sending out is blue, you're good. If it's green, it means you're sending an SMS.

Now, as someone said, you can make sure an SMS is never sent by making the appropriate adjustments in Settings. But I text people internationally using iMessage all the time with zero issues.
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Old May 25, 2014, 10:49 PM   #23
Cali14
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Thanks for the your replies. My main concern was whether I would still get charged with just using my 3G connection because a lot of posts I have read in different sites people say that it's only free internationally with a wifi connection and I don't have wifi at the moment.. I do however have unlimited data usage and as long as we're both using iPhones, iOS5 or higher and have both our iMessage turned on, then it's still FREE with ONLY my 3G internet?
Sorry, don't mean to sound like I don't get what you're saying, I just share a plan with other people and although we all have unlimited everything, I don't want any issues with them about it. Yes I pay my own part of my bill but I am not the main account holder so there's no way for me to check if I was getting additional charges or not...

----------

Also, I have turned my "send as SMS when iMessage is unavailable" off.. And when I say I wanna make sure I'm not getting an additional charges, I mean DATA charges. But if I have unlimited data then I'm assuming that shouldn't be a problem..
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Old May 26, 2014, 12:57 AM   #24
mib1800
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Forget about iMessage. It is too much hassle. You can get charged for expensive international SMS if you are not careful. This is one of the biggest drawback. And it is limited to Apple iphones and outside the US you can only 15-20% of users.

Use whatsapp or other IMs. This ensures you separate IM from SMS.
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Old May 26, 2014, 02:28 AM   #25
iPhone1
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Just turn off SMS and use iMessage wherever you have data. I did this overseas and it was awesome. FaceTime audio is good for actual voice calls on wifi only.
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