iMessage Not Working [Mac, iPhone, iPad] – Suggested Fixes

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Bernard Perron
@bernardperron
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Although Apple's mail service generally works smoothly, you may notice that sometimes your message is not delivered or you do not receive messages.

Several factors can affect your iMessage. Fortunately, the solutions are usually simple. Take a look at the possible causes and solutions in this article.

iMessage not working on Mac

If you think iMessage isn't working on your Mac, here are the possible causes and fixes:



Check your internet connection

Let's start with the basics. Unlike normal text messages, iMessage requires an internet connection. Check if you are connected to the internet and make sure it is working by visiting a website.

Restart your Mac

Restarting your Mac refreshed all installed apps, including iMessage. Tap the Apple logo in the upper left corner, then select "Restart." Once restarted, try opening iMessage and texting.

Verify your Apple ID or iCloud

iMessage will not work without your Apple ID or iCloud. If you entered the wrong one or signed out, iMessage won't work. Here's how to check:

  1. Tap the Apple logo.
  2. Select "System Preferences".
  3. Open "iCloud Settings".

In settings, make sure you're signed in with an ID that matches what you're using on other devices. Otherwise, iMessage won't sync and you might experience issues with your messages.

Reactivate iMessage

You can try disabling and enabling iMessage. The application may encounter temporary problems which can be solved in this way:


  1. Open the app and go to the menu.
  2. Select “Preferences”.
  3. In the iMessage tab, uncheck the "Enable messages in iCloud" box and close the application.
  4. Open the app and go back to the same settings to re-enable it.

Log out of the app

You can also try logging out and logging back in. Follow these steps:


  1. Open the messaging app and go to the menu.
  2. Tap "Preferences" and navigate to the iMessage tab.
  3. Tap "Sign Out" and close the app.
  4. Open the app and sign in again with your Apple ID.

Clear Cache

Another possible solution is to clear the application cache. Keep in mind that this might delete your texts. Here's how:

  1. Open Finder.
  2. Press "Command + Shift + G".
  3. Type the following: "~/Library/Messages/"
  4. Delete files containing "chat.db".
  5. Empty the trash.

Check other Apple devices

Chances are you also use an iPhone or iPad. Check if the app works on these devices. If not, the problem may not be on your side. Apple servers may be down or there may be a different technical problem. You can report the problem and wait for it to be fixed.

iMessage not working on iPhone

Several factors can cause iMessage to malfunction on your iPhone. Try the following list of actions.

Check your internet connection

As you know, iMessage requires an internet connection. Whether it's Wi-Fi or data, make sure the connection is stable by visiting a website or opening an app that also uses the internet. If you're using data, check to see if you've used it.


Turn off airplane mode

You may have accidentally enabled airplane mode. This would disable the internet, which would prevent iMessage from working. Here's how to get out of it:


  1. Open the Control Center.
  2. Tap the airplane icon in the upper left corner.

Check your iMessage settings

When you text someone who isn't using an iPhone, you're actually sending a normal text message. If SMS is disabled, your message will not go through. Here's how to check if you have this enabled:

  1. Open Settings and go to Messages.
  2. Toggle the button next to "Send as SMS."

Restart your iPhone

As simple as it sounds, turning your iPhone off and back on can fix this problem. Hold down the power button and volume down button until your device turns off, then turn it back on. This might fix temporary issues and restore iMessage.

Check the number or email you entered

If your iMessage didn't go through, you may have entered the wrong number or email address. Double check to make sure everything is correct and resend your message.

Log out of the app

You can log out and log back in to the app:

  1. Go to Settings and open Messages.
  2. Tap "Send & Receive".
  3. Tap "Apple ID" and tap "Sign Out."

Access the same settings to reconnect.

Update your iPhone

Apple frequently releases iOS updates. If you are unsure if your device is running the latest version, follow these steps:



  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap "General".
  3. Tap “Software Update”.

If none of the solutions above work, the problem may be on Apple's side. Servers may be temporarily unavailable. In this case, you can only wait for the problem to be resolved.

iMessage not working on iPad

You'll be happy to know that you can fix this problem yourself in most cases. Check out the potential solutions below.

Check your internet connection

iMessage requires a stable internet connection to work. If you are connected to Wi-Fi, make sure the connection is active. If you are using your data, check and see if you are at the limit. If you're out of data, iMessage will only work if you connect to Wi-Fi.

Turn off airplane mode

iMessage won't work in airplane mode because you're not connected to the internet. Check if it is disabled by following these steps:

  1. Open the Control Center.
  2. Select the airplane icon in the upper left corner and make sure it is disabled.

Check settings

You can only send iMessages to Apple users. Whenever you want to send an SMS to a non-Apple user, the message will be sent as a normal SMS if you have enabled this option. If disabled, the text will not pass. Check this by following these steps:

  1. Open Settings and go to Messages.
  2. Check the toggle button next to "Send as SMS".

Restart your iPad

Turning your iPad off and on again may allow iMessage to work.

If your iPad doesn't have a home button, hold down the up and volume down button and slide the power off slider. If so, hold down the top button and drag the slider.

Wait a few minutes before turning your iPad back on.

Verify recipient information

You may have entered the wrong number or email address. Check the information and try to resend the message.

Log out of the app

You can try to fix the problem by logging out and logging back into the app. Here are the steps:

  1. Open Settings and tap Messages.
  2. Tap "Send & Receive".
  3. Tap "Apple ID" and select "Sign Out".

Reconnect by repeating the steps.

Update your iPad

Malfunctions are possible if your device is not running the latest operating system. You can check for updates as follows:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap "General".
  3. Select "Software Update".

If available, tap "Download and Install".

iMessage not working for a contact

If your iMessage problems only affect one person, here are the possible solutions:

  1. When you message someone for the first time, check if the number is correct. It has been reported that entering the same number again may resolve this issue.
  2. Delete previous threads.
  3. Check your internet connection.
  4. Add the email address to contacts.
  5. Make sure both devices are set up correctly.
  6. Restart your device.

iMessage not working with phone number

Many users have reported receiving the notification "Phone number is not registered with iMessage". Here is what you can do to fix this problem:

  1. Re-enable iMessage by opening your Settings.
  2. If you recently changed your phone number, your device may be stuck on the old one. Check and see if your current number is selected by going to Settings.
  3. If you use multiple Apple devices, you should use the same Apple ID for all of them.
  4. Restart your device.
  5. Update your device.

Fix iMessage in a snap

iMessage is one of the greatest benefits of owning Apple devices. Despite this, the application may encounter occasional bugs. But the good news is that they are usually easy to fix.

Have you ever had problems with iMessage? Did you use any of the methods suggested above? Tell us in the comments section below.

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