How to Possibly Fix iOS 7 iMessage Failures Until Apple Does

Apple says it's aware of the problem and working on a permanent solution.

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Do you use iMessage, Apple’s freebie chat client? Did you upgrade to iOS 7, or more specifically, iOS 7.0.2? Are you having to resend messages to get them to go through?

Apple feels your pain, to the extent that it’s acknowledged the problem and issued the following statement:

We are aware of an issue that affects a fraction of a percent of our iMessage users, and we will have a fix available in an upcoming software update. In the meantime, we encourage any users having problems to reference our troubleshooting documents or contact AppleCare to help resolve their issue. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes impacted users.

It’s not clear what’s causing the error, but initial reports began popping up over the weekend and appear to coincide (though this is just speculation) with the release of iOS 7.0.2, which dropped on Thursday, September 26. If you poke around Apple-related messages boards, you’ll find users complaining of the problem, and if you search for “iMessage” on Twitter, you’ll find complaints about the service not working cycling at a rate of maybe a dozen tweets a minute — not exactly trending, granted, but evidence of frustration. Mostly, people don’t seem to realize there’s an actual issue with iMessage, posing their tweets as questions, like:

While we’re waiting for Apple to issue its promised fix, possibly¬†in iOS 7.0.3 (speculates The Loop), users affected by the bug claim to be finding relief by doing the following:

1. Disable iMessage (Settings > Messages).

2. Reset your network settings (Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings).

3. Reenable iMessage.

Alternatively, some users claim resetting their iOS device does the trick: Hold down the power and Home buttons simultaneously until the white-Apple-logo-on-black boot screen appears.

In both instances, the fix — if, indeed, it fixes the problem for you — may only be temporary: some users who’ve performed it say the iMessage failures start up again after a while.