When you send messages on your iPhone, they appear as green or blue bubbles. The green bubbles are for standard SMS, while the blue bubbles are for iMessage. Therefore, if you notice your text messages turn from blue to green, your phone sends them as standard texts instead of iMessages.
Let’s look into the two so that you can get a better understanding.
SMS Message vs iMessage: What’s the difference?
iPhone has SMS and iMessage as its default messaging options. Here is how they work.
SMS messaging is the traditional way of sending texts that requires a cellular signal and a plan to deliver the message. You can use it to send texts from your iPhone to any phone, and the texts feature a green bubble background.
Also, it’s the default messaging option when iMessage fails. But, you must enable that option in Settings > Messages > toggle On Send as SMS.
iMessage is a messaging feature exclusively for Apple devices. The messages are sent over Wi-Fi, or cellular data from one Apple device to another, provided both have activated iMessage. Its text bubbles are usually blue.
The pros of using iMessage include:
- iMessage uses end-to-end encryption, which makes it more secure.
- It’s free to send messages if connected to Wi-Fi or a cellular network.
- There are no limited text plans.
- You can share your location on iMessage.
- If the recipient has enabled Read Receipts, you’ll know when your message was delivered and read.
- You can see when a person is typing (the three pulsing dots).
- You can sync the message with multiple Apple devices to receive or reply using any of the devices.
How to activate iMessage
To enable iMessage on iPhone, go to Settings > Messages > toggle On iMessage.
Next, scroll down and tap on Send & Receive. Here, confirm the Apple ID at the top and check the available options for You can send and receive iMessage to and reply from. Usually, it’s your phone number and Apple ID email address.
Why have texts changed from blue to green on iPhone?
If you’re sending an iMessage to a contact and the message turns green and prompts you to send it as a text message, it could be because:
- You’ve been disconnected from the Wi-Fi network or ran out of cellular data.
- The recipient turned off the iMessage.
- Your iMessage is turned off.
- The recipient is not connected to the internet.
- Either you or the recipient has a poor internet connection.
- The recipient has enabled Airplane or Do not Disturb mode.
- The recipient switched from iPhone to an Android device.
- The iMessage servers are down.
NOTE: If you’re sending a group iMessage and one of the recipients doesn’t have an Apple product, the text will be sent as a regular text.
Do green text messages mean blocked?
No, green messages don’t mean you’re blocked. Instead, they are a sign that the iMessage recipient has turned off their device(s), is not connected to the internet, or has disabled iMessage.
If someone blocks you and sends them an iMessage, the message will display as a blue bubble. However, they will never receive the message.
What to do when iMessage turns from blue to green on iPhone
There are different ways to troubleshoot this error in Apple devices. They include:
1. Reboot your device(s)
Restart all the devices linked to your Apple ID that you use to send and receive iMessages. This will help to clear system bugs and glitches that affect iMessages.
2. Check the iMessage servers
Confirm the iMessage servers are working fine. However, if they’re down, you’ll have to wait until Apple fixes their end.
3. Check your internet connection
Ensure your iPhone is connected to stable internet. Be it Wi-Fi or cellular data. You can switch from one to the other or connect to a different ISP (Internet Service Provider) and see if the texts will send as iMessage.
4. Check if iMessage is enabled
Go to Settings > Messages > iMessage.
If you’re using iMessage on Mac or iPad, confirm it’s set up properly. Use the following guides:
- Mac: Go to the Messages App > Enter Apple ID and password to sign in. Next, select Messages > Preferences > iMessage. Be sure to enable Messages in iCloud and check the email and phone number people can reach you at.
- iPad: Go to Settings > Messages > iMessage.
5. Talk to the recipient
After troubleshooting with the solutions above and your messages turning from blue to green, the issue is likely on the recipient’s end. You call them or send the message as a text message to find out.
If they’re unaware, ask them to check the same issues above. Additionally, they should disable Do Not Disturb and Airplane mode if they were turned on accidentally.
That concludes our explanation of why iPhone text messages turn from blue to green. Hopefully, the troubleshooting will help restore the revered blue bubble. You can share this article with other iPhone users experiencing the same problem.
Alex is an IT technician who shares his experiences with Apple devices occasionally. He has a collection of Apple devices (from iPhone 4) and has recently started trying out Android.
IG: @I M_Alex