How does the iPhone know someone's on iMessage?

How does the iPhone know someone's on iMessage?
The reason I ask is, a friend of mine now has an Android phone, and it keeps trying to send him iMessages, which obviously just hang and don't get sent!

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TJ Skywasher  May. 5, 2014 at 14:52

Do you have it setup to only send iMessages and not SMS text messages or do you currently send both? Also, if you're trying to send the message to your friends email address rather than phone number then it will automatically send it via iMessage as you can't send SMS text messages to an email address.

areyoukiddingmebigman  May. 5, 2014 at 15:25

I send both, but the iPhone usually sets it to text or IMessage automatically.
With this one contact, I have to hold my finger down and choose Send As Text (after the iMessage inevitably fails).

bigdarlodave  May. 6, 2014 at 06:51

I had the same problem when I moved from iPhone to android and my wife used her iPhone to send to me, however her phone thought I was still on iMessage until I went into the old iPhone settings and turned iMessage off, the messages came to me then.

TJ Skywasher  May. 27, 2014 at 14:36

The issue comes from your friend not disabling iMessage on their iPhone and unregistering their phone number with iMessage before they moved to Android. So for all intents and purposes they're still registered with the iMessage service. When you try to send a message it will automatically send it as an iMessage as the server knows that the user in question is using iMessage and has their number registered.

Most users just wipe their iPhone before selling it and don't think to unregister from iMessage, which is understandable, not something I'd think to do. The problem (aside from the user unregistering) is both server-side and iOS, as far as I know Apple has fixed the server-side issue but needs to push out an update for iOS to fix the issue completely.


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