Explained: Why did iMessage turn green?

By Robert David Orr / Last updated: Jun 23, 2022

As an iPhone user, you’ve probably noticed that when you send a message to someone using iMessage, the message is wrapped in blue bubble.

But sometimes, you see it wrapped in a green bubble, and you may be wondering what this means, and why the change in color occurred.

So why did a blue iMessage on your iPhone suddenly turn green?

iMessages turn green because your iPhone is using a cellular connection and the message is being sent via SMS instead of Apple’s iMessage app, there is a problem with the internet service that your iPhone is connected to, or there is some other technical issue causing you to not be able to send messages over the network.

But you may still have questions.

Like:

  • Does a green message mean I’m blocked?
  • How can I know if someone has blocked me?
  • What can I do if my messages are not sending from the app?
  • How do I fix my green text messages?

It’s not just about being able to send text messages between iOS and Android users anymore. Now, we can also share photos, videos, contacts, and even location information.

But if you are sending via SMS instead of iMessage, your mileage will vary as to how well any of those things perform.

So if you’re stuck in green mode, I’ve got you covered.

Here’s everything you need to know about iMessage’s green bubbles and what you can do about it.

Real quick, before we get too far into it here, if you want to get more great ideas for your gaming room or home office and want to connect with other home office hackers to make your space the best join my free private Facebook group,Home Office Hacks here.

Explained: Why did iMessage turn green?

When Apple introduced iMessage, they made a major change to the way we communicate. They turned off SMS (text messaging) and replaced it with iMessage. This was a huge shift in communication technology.

iMessage is now the default method of sending messages between iPhones, iPads, Mac computers, and iPod touch devices. In fact, iMessage is so popular that many people don’t realize there is another option.

Apple’s decision to replace SMS with iMessage was driven by several factors.

First, they wanted to create a seamless experience across all Apple devices.

Second, they wanted to eliminate spam and unwanted messages.

Third, they wanted to reduce costs associated with SMS.

Fourth, they wanted to improve user privacy.

Fifth, they wanted to keep users connected at all times.

And sixth, they wanted to encourage users to use iMessages instead of SMS.

The result of this change is that iMessages are sent directly to the recipient’s phone number. There is no need to send a separate text message. Instead, the sender sends a single iMessage to the recipient’s iPhone address book.

This change has had some unintended consequences. One of these is that iMessages can be delivered to any device running iOS 7.0 or later. However, if the recipient doesn’t have iMessage enabled, then the message won’t go through.

Why are my iMessages suddenly sending green bubbles?

If you’ve been using iMessage for a while, you’re probably used to seeing blue bubbles next to your text messages. But lately, you may have noticed that some of your messages are suddenly sending as green bubbles. So what’s the deal?

Well, it turns out that green bubbles indicate SMS text messages, while blue bubbles indicate iMessages. If you’re sending a message to someone who doesn’t have an iPhone, or if their iPhone is turned off, your message will be sent as a cellular SMS message. Otherwise, it will be sent as an internet message via iMessage.

So if you’re wondering why your iMessages are sending as green bubbles, it’s because they’re actually SMS text messages. But don’t worry – you can still send blue bubble iMessages by making sure that your recipient has an iPhone and that their iPhone is turned on.

The difference between SMS and iMessage explained

For the uninitiated, SMS and iMessage can seem like two completely different things. But once you understand the difference between them, it’s actually pretty simple.

SMS stands for Short Message Service, and is the standard way to send text messages.

SMS messages are short text messages sent over a cellular network. They’re usually free or included in your plan, but they don’t work well when there’s no cell signal.

iMessage works differently and is a messaging service that is specific to Apple devices. It makes use of your wifi connection and works even when you’re out of range of a cellular tower. The downside is that it requires an internet connection.

So the big difference comes from the fact that SMS messages are sent using your mobile network, while iMessages are sent over the internet.

That’s why you might see a blue bubble next to an iMessage, while SMS messages appear as green bubbles.

So if you’re sending a message to someone with an iPhone, you can use iMessage and be confident that it will be delivered instantly. But if you’re sending a message to someone with a different type of phone, or if you’re not connected to the internet, then SMS is the way to go.

Do green iMessages mean I’m blocked?

If you’ve ever sent an iMessage and it’s come back green, you may have wondered whether or not it means you’re blocked.

The truth is, not necessarily.

Green iMessages can also indicate that the person you’re sending the message to doesn’t have an iPhone – which means your precious iMessages are being downgraded to good ol’ fashioned SMS text messages.

So if you see a green message, it could mean that you’re blocked… or it could just mean that your friend is stuck in the past and still uses a non-Apple Android phone or – gasp! – a flip phone.

How can I know if someone has blocked me?

There are a few telltale signs that you may have been blocked.

For one, you may notice that you can’t see the person’s profile picture anymore. If you try to visit their profile, you may also get an error message.

Additionally, you may find that you can’t tag the person in photos or posts, and that your messages to them are never delivered (although they may show as ‘sent’ in your messaging app).

If your blue messages suddenly start turning green, then you might think that’s a sign of being blocked as noted previously. However, in reality it most likely due to a connectivity issues with the recipient and they’re not able to receive iMessages due to their location.

Another option is to go old school and call the person. If you’re blocked what will happen is that it will ring once on your side and then immediately dump you into their voicemail.

Same kind of thing would happen for a Facetime call. If your call is immediately rejected, it could be that you’ve been blocked as a contact.

You could always disable your outbound caller ID and try the call – if you get a response that time, then you may be blocked.

If you suspect you’ve been blocked, there’s no surefire way to know for sure – but these are some pretty good indications that something is up.

Not sending from an iMessage app

Because on an iPhone the iMessage app will handle both traditional SMS messages along with iMessages, if you’re not able to do anything, that can be a huge problem.

If you’re running into failed attempts at sending messages, the first thing to do is to restart your phone.

Restarting is always the magic trick that will fix most issues (but not all).

If that doesn’t solve the issue, make sure you’re connected to wifi and you’ve got a strong signal. Just because you’re connected, it doesn’t mean that you’ve got a good signal.

If your wifi signal is poor, then turn off your wifi under settings and use a cellular connection to send your message. If you’ve got a good signal with your cellular service this will, a lot of times, resolve the issue.

If neither of those work, then it may be time to take your iPhone to the Apple store, or some other repair shop like the Geek Squad and have them run diagnostics to see what the problem may be.

Is there a way to fix green text messages?

While this may sound like a serious problem, there’s no need to panic. In most cases, it’s a simple settings issue that can be easily fixed.

So why is your iPhone suddenly sending green text messages? It could be that you’ve accidentally turned on the “Send as SMS” feature in your Messages settings.

This causes blue text messages to be sent as green ones when iMessage is unavailable. To fix this, simply go to your Messages settings and toggle off the “Send as SMS” option.

If your text messages are still appearing green, it could be that your iPhone is low on storage. When this happens, iOS will automatically switch to using SMS instead of iMessage to save space.

To free up some storage, try deleting any unused apps or old message threads. You can also try offloading unused apps – this will preserve your data while freeing up space on your iPhone.

Finally, if none of these solutions work, it’s possible that there’s an issue with your iPhone’s software or hardware. In this case, the best course of action is to take your iPhone to the Apple store or a certified repair shop.

Next Steps

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Robert David Orr

I'm an award-winning web designer & developer, creator, an all-around digital marketing guy and, most importantly when it comes to this site, a long-time veteran of the working from home life. My work from home life spans more than 10 years, and I've experimented with just about everything you can think of when it comes to getting the most out of my home office, how to work from home without going crazy, and found solutions to the numerous challenges that those of us who work from home run into in this life.

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