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I.e., could I configure a client such as AIM, Jabber, Skype, etc. on my phone and completely switch off SMS altogether?

Would the sending party be alerted that their SMS won't go through?

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I cancelled my SMS plan and use iMessage with people who have iPhones and Google Voice with people who don't. Both are free.

I can still receive SMS messages, but I get charged for them (but it's exceedingly rare that I get one). My wife opted to block all SMS messages. If someone sends one to her they do not get any notification that it is not received.

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Thanks. I guess I should have expected that about no notifications that SMS is blocked. I've found that the textPlus is a pretty good app and system: free phone number for incoming SMS's. There are also a couple apps that provide this for Google Voice numbers. –  Dogweather Sep 2 '12 at 22:10
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