My iMessage Isn’t Working on Mac, iPhone, and iPad? Here is the Best Fix!

imessage not working on iphone

If you have had to deal with the iMessage not working issue (iMessage saying waiting for activation, for example) you will probably agree with us when we say that the issue can be super annoying. If you depend on iMessage to communicate with colleagues, when you are experiencing the iMessage not sending issue, your communication will be cut short.

Similar to the other applications you have on your Apple devices, iMessage may misbehave every once in a while. However, if you keep complaining that my iMessage isn’t working every now and then, figuring out what is happening may be a good idea. In this article, we will help you find the answer to the question “why is my iMessage not working?”. We will also show you the solutions you can use whenever you are experiencing the iMessage not delivered issue.

What is iMessage?

The iMessage makes it possible for Apple device users to send messages whose size exceeds the normal 160 characters in SMSs. The only drawback with iMessage is that for you to use it, you have to own an iPhone, an iPad, an iPod, or a Mac. You can’t send an iMessage from your iPhone to someone who has an Android device.

If you are a regular iMessage user, you have probably noticed that messages are either sent in a green or a blue bubble. If you are curious, you have probably wondered what this means. Below, we will show you what it means:

  • If the sent message appears in the blue bubble, this means that the message was sent using the iMessage service.
  • If the message is in a green bubble, this means that the message was sent either using the MMS or SMS, via your cellular plan.

Top 11 Ways to Fix iMessage not Working

1.    Check Your Internet Connection

The lack of an internet connection could be the reason you are experiencing the iMessage not activating issue. Checking your internet connection is the first solution you should apply. As noted earlier on, iMessage uses your internet connection to send your messages.

First, confirm that the Airplane mode is not enabled. Next, check to make sure that your Wi-Fi is already enabled. To determine whether the internet connection is working, open the Safari browser and then try to load apple.com. This will help you confirm whether the Wi-Fi you are connected to is currently working.

Without a stable internet connection, iMessage will not work until you activate “Send as SMS”. This turns iMessage into a normal text message application. If you find that you don’t have the ability to load web pages, there is a chance that your internet connection is not working. If you would like to activate “Send as SMS” on iMessage, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Tap and hold the message you would like to send as a text message.

Step 2: From the pop-up which appears, choose “Send as a Text Message”. Now, your message should go through even in poor internet connection.

2.    Turn iMessage Off, Reboot Your Device, and Then Turn It Back On

This solution has helped solve the iMessage not working issue for a lot of iMessage users in the past. To apply this solution, simply follow the steps outlined below:

Step 1: Open Settings and tap Messages.

Step 2: Toggle off iMessage.

Step 3: Press and hold the power button until the “Slide to Power Off” appears on the screen. Slide the slider to turn the device off.

Step 4: Turn the device back on after a couple of seconds.

Step 5: Head to Settings > Messages.

Step 6: Toggle on iMessages.

3.    Restart iMessage on Mac

If you are experiencing the iMessages not working on Mac issue, you can fix the problem by simply restarting the service. To restart the Apple service on your Mac, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Launch the Messages application and then enter the Settings panel.

Step 2: Click Accounts and ensure that the iMessage account is already selected on the left-hand column.

Step 3: Uncheck the Enable this Account checkbox.

Step 4: Wait for a couple of minutes and then re-check the checkbox.

4.    Confirm that iMessage is Set Up Correctly

In some instances, the main reason why you are dealing with the “my iMessage isn’t working” issue could be that you haven’t set it up correctly. To make sure that this not the answer to the question “why is my iMessage not working?”, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Launch Settings > Messages.

Step 2: Tap Send & Receive.

Here, you should be able to see all the email addresses and phone numbers which are configured to receive and send iMessages on your iPad/iPhone/iPod.

Step 3: Check the section “Start New Conversations From”. If a checkmark is not available next to your phone number, tap on the phone number to activate iMessage for the number.

5.    Hard Reset the iDevice

In some cases, my iMessage isn’t working problem could be a result of glitches. Force-restarting your device can get rid of the issues. Below, we show you the steps you need to follow to hard reset your iDevice:

iPhone 8 and Later

Step 1: Press and quickly release the Volume Up button.

Step 2: Press and quickly release the Volume Down button.

Step 3: Press and keep holding the side button until you see the Apple logo.

iPhone 7/7 Plus

Step 1: Press and keep holding both the Volume Down button and the Sleep/Wake button.

Step 2: Release both buttons when you see the Apple logo.

iPhone 6S Plus and Earlier

Step 1: Press and hold both the Sleep/Wake button and Home button.

Step 2: Release both buttons when the Apple logo shows.

iPad

Step 1: Press and hold both the On/Off and Home Buttons.

Step 2: Release the buttons when the Apple Logo appears.

6.    Sign Out and Then in of iMessage

If you have tried the solutions outlined above and you still have the iMessage not delivered issue, you can try signing out of iMessage and signing in again. The steps you need to follow to implement this solution are as shown below:

Step 1: Open Settings > tap Messages.

Step 2: Tap on Send & Receive. Next, click Apple ID [Your Apple ID].

Step 3: Choose Sign Out.

Step 4: After a couple of seconds, sign in again using your Apple ID and try to send your iMessage again.

7.    Make Sure Your iOS Version is Up to Date

Older iOS versions do feature bugs. Apple constantly releases updated iOS versions to fix these bugs. A bug could be the reason you are dealing with the iMessage not activating issue. Below, we have outlined the steps you need to follow to update your iOS version:

Step 1: Open Settings and tap General.

Step 2: Locate Software Update and tap on it.

Step 3: If an update is available, tap Download and Install.

8.    Reset the Network Settings

The network settings could be the main reason you are currently dealing with the iMessage not sending issue. You can fix the issue by resetting the network settings. Below, we have the steps you need to follow to reset all the network settings:

Step 1: Open Settings > tap on General.

Step 2: Select Reset and then click Reset Network Settings.

Note: When you reset the network settings, you will erase all the network settings, including Wi-Fi passwords. Therefore, before you go ahead and reset the settings, make sure that you know the Wi-Fi password.

9.    Check Your Time Zone Settings

Some iMessage users found out that the reason they were dealing with the iMessages not working on Mac and their iDevices was that their Time Zone settings were not set to update automatically. To set the network settings to update automatically, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Open Settings and then tap General.

Step 2: Tap Date & Time. Turn Automatically on.

10.    Delete Some Messages

In some rare cases, the answer to the question “why is my iMessage not working?” is that your iMessage has too many messages. Numerous messages can slow the application down. Deleting some of the messages can help you solve the issue. Below, we have the steps you need to follow to delete some of the messages:

Step 1: Launch iMessage and then tap the Edit button.

Step 2: Delete the messages you do not want to keep.

  • Alternatively, you can swipe right to left on the messages you would like to delete.

You can also set iMessage to delete your messages automatically after specific periods of times. Below, we have the steps you need to follow if this feature appeals to you:

Step 1: Open Settings > Messages.

Step 2: Locate Message History and then click on Keep Messages. Choose either forever, 1 year, or 30 days, depending on your preference.

11.    Set the iMessage to Send Low-Resolution Pictures

If you send high-resolution pictures, they will occupy a lot of space. This can slow down your iMessage application. To set the iMessage to send low-resolution images, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Open Settings > Messages.

Step 2: Toggle on Low-Quality Image Mode.

Check to See Whether the Apple Service is Being Maintained

If you have tried all the solutions outlined above but you still have the iMessage not working issue, there is a chance that the iMessage service could be down or under maintenance. To check whether iMessage is down, visit the Apple status page which lives here: https://www.apple.com/support/systemstatus/

If the iMessage is operational, it should have a green status icon. You can check the detailed timeline at the bottom of the page to make sure that iMessage is not one of the reported issues.

Summary

If you have been dealing with the iMessage not working issue, you should find an ideal solution in this article. To improve the chances of getting rid of the iMessage not sending issue, you should try different solutions. Some of the solutions may not work for you.

If after trying all the solutions outlined in this article you come to the conclusion that none of the solutions works for you, you can contact Apple support. The Apple support can help you with the troubleshooting and finding a solution that works for the iMessage not working issues.

Author: Treyton Collins

A tech editor for Starzsoft.com offering professional how-to articles for Windows, Android and Apple users.