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I have noticed that iMessages usually fail when outside a reliable data network area. Only after iOS attempts to deliver the message and fails does it offer to send it as a text message. Often the failure takes some time, and is not brought to my attention immediately. When circumstances are such that I reasonably suspect that iMessage will fail, I would like to skip the failure and send an SMS immediately.

How can I opt to send an SMS message instead of an iMessage without first attempting to send an iMessage?

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There is currently no way to switch to Text Message by default when iMessage you know is going to fail.

1) When you know that your iMessage is not gonna go then try this:

  • Type iMessage and send it. It will get stuck with Top bar showing "Sending..."
  • Long press the iMessage text that is not going.
  • A menu will appear where you can choose "Send as text message"

2) Now if you want to send Text Message intentionally by passing iMessage (consider scenario when you know recipient is not on cellular data or wifi) you can do the following: - Disable your Wifi - Disable Cellular data ( Go to Settings -> Select "Cellular" -> disable "Cellular Data" - Type iMessage and send it. It will get stuck with Top bar showing "Sending..." - Long press the iMessage text that is not going. - A menu will appear where you can choose "Send as text message"

Hope that helps!

Screenshots attached:Updating after fsb's comment below. "Send as text message" is not disabled in iOS 10.2.1 (latest as of 02/21/2017)

Updating after fsb's comment below. "Send as text message" is not disabled in iOS 10.2.1 (latest as of 02/21/2017)

  • I don't think this works on iOS10 and up; Apple removed the ability to force-send as SMS. Also, the OP specifically states they're looking for an answer that doesn't include trying to send as iMessage first. Your answer doesn't do that. Please edit your answer to address the points in the question. – fsb Feb 21 '17 at 22:59
  • Updated with screenshot. You boldcanbold force-send a iMessage that is not delivering or failed to deliver (as noted in the question above). – FocalPoint Feb 21 '17 at 23:39
  • I didn't say 'send as text message' was disabled, I said the ability to hold the button and have a message popup that allows the force-send has been disabled. The new way is similar to what you've indicated however there are many steps you've left out. See here and here. – fsb Feb 22 '17 at 2:53

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