Text messages are delayed sending and receiving


    When I receive a text message, I often get it and it shows 5+ minutes old. Its even been in excess of a day - this when I have plenty of signal and can make voice calls and use data without issue. I use the standard stock Messaging app. I also have delays sending messages. It spins and spins and a reboot rarely helps.


    I'm using a S5. I deleted all the messages, no change. It has been factory reset with no change. I used to have a Note 4 with the same issue.


    My zip is 30005. I have been having this problem for over a year. I've ignored it mostly because I got told about service improvements in my area and promised a booster that never arrived.


    But now the delays are causing me great pains because more and more websites are using SMS for 2-factor and a message that takes over 4 minutes to arrive DOES NOT WORK for 2-factor as the code expires before I receive the message. So I now need this figured out.

      All replies

      • kyferez

        So no-one has any insight into this?


        I've been with T-mobile since 2012 through some good and bad, but I cannot deal with these delayed texts any longer - they are preventing my use of certain sites which is impacting me financially now. I will have to leave if this isn't fixed.

        1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • tmo_mike_c

            Yikes! Delays are no good and we certainly want to fix this for you. Is this only happen with 2 factor verification messages? If so, does it happen with one or multiple senders? Since this is happening on multiple devices, this may result in the need to file a Trouble Ticket.

              • kyferez

                Yes, it is with more than just the 2-factor auth; it's just that is the most important reason I need them not to be delayed.

                Yes, it happens with all senders. Occasionally texts will come in without delay, but most of the time it's in excess of 5min.


                Delays also happen with me sending to others.


                It also happens whether I am on 4G or WiFi.


                Also after talking with my family, all 4 phones on my account have the same issue. Seems clear that this is an account issue or T-mobile network problem and not a problem with an individual phone or individual line.

                1 of 1 people found this helpful
                • nikarene94

                  I just switched a month ago, I have a iPhone 7 plus and I'm noticing that my messages, sometimes a group, are not received until the next day. Is there a setting I need to change now that I have the new service, please help!

                    • tmo_mike_c

                      Are these messages coming from specific numbers or carriers? Have you already tried clearing out unneeded messages from your phone to see if the messages come in more smoothly?

                        • kyferez

                          It is pointless to talk to support - they have no clue and is a complete waste of time. I have a coworker that has been dealing with support for a year on this and gone through 4 Tmobile provided phones (S5, an LG, something else, and an S7 which is the latest) in that year because of this. I have also been discussing with others who have Tmobile, and everyone I talk to has this issue with delayed text messages. So obviously this is not a device issue but a network issue.


                          My coworker has also decided to drop Tmobile due to it.

                          1 of 1 people found this helpful
                            • dragon1562

                              Did you end up dropping T-mobile or did you still want help. I just now saw the thread and would still like to help if I can.

                                • kyferez

                                  I still have mine for now; but I'm certainly looking at my options. If you're help is going to be device related though, I'm not interested as I'm certain it's a network problem now. I've already done everything device related that can be done; including modifying the APN settings to recommended, both by Tmobile and others. The mobile groups recommendations actually work slightly better than Tmobile's recommendations, but it's still a constant problem trying to send/receive.

                                    • dragon1562

                                      Well I was hoping to narrow down the possibilities by asking a few additional questions. I am sorry but in order for me to be of any use to you info is important. I wanted to ask if you could try using the phone in safe mode. If things work perfectly in safe mode then their is a app on the phone that is not playing nice with your messaging app.


                                      The other thing I want to ask was if this happens on wifi as well. If that is the case it would reaffirm my belief that it is something to do with the device. To be clear you are using a S7?

                                        • kyferez

                                          No, I'm using an s5 currently. This is most certainly NOT device related. I use VERY FEW apps. No Facebook, no games, no unknown apps. Only a couple very well known apps like Robinhood and Waze. It's not an app causing this because like I said in my original post, I have HARD RESET and the issue STILL occurs. AND it's not just me. It's my ENTIRE family, and my coworker, and everyone else I talk to that has Tmobile in this area.


                                          Forgive my bluntness and annoyance. I've been down this road repeatedly with more than 1 device. IT"S NOT THE DEVICE!

                                            • dragon1562

                                              I understand your frustration. I was just a bit confused and I have not been there with it all. If it is effecting numerous people then you may be right about it being a network issue. I just find it to be odd for it to go on for so long, since people would rightly so complain. Did you try wifi calling on the device? Like I said wifi is separate from the network and should not be effected. I also want to ask again and sorry in advance but did you say this was in one particular area. Is it effecting you across all bands. IE have you tried dropping off LTE for texting?

                                                • kyferez

                                                  How do you know it's not being complained about? Furthermore, how do you know lots of users aren't just ignoring it as I did for a year before starting this thread? As I stated in an earlier post I didn't complain about it for over a year because it was a minor annoyance, until now when so many sites use SMS for 2-factor auth.


                                                  Stating you haven't been here with it is understandble, however you can read the full thread here and see everything that's been discussed. I covered much of what I've re-stated in my last few posts in my original post.


                                                  Additionally, your earlier assertion that being on WiFi and having issues with SMS would eliminate the network is incorrect. It could eliminate the Cellular connection, but not the entire Tmobile network. It is obviously something Else with the Tmobile network, not necessarily the cellular connection as I can make calls and use data with no problem.


                                                  It seems more like a capacity problem with the SMS servers and or services due to the intermittent nature of the issue and how it occurs despite good cellular connection and also while on WiFi.

                                                    • dragon1562

                                                      I know what you mean but I figured people would still make noise. I am very vocal when I have a issue with T-mobile service or any product for that matter. Also I read the thread a few times now but there are still bits of info that were never talked about. Sometimes the issues we face are from the silliest of things. Tech can be odd like that.


                                                      As far as my assertion with wifi eliminating the texting issue, it should. Since you are no longer relying on the T-mobile network to send the message. When you get right down to it a text is just a little bit of data following a very old protocol to get your message from you to the receipt. So when texting issues arise due to a capacity issue it should also degrade other services on the network, since texts do not strain the network like normal data.


                                                      The only time I have seen SMS services get overloaded was during times of emergency. I would file a ticket again with T-mobile and ask them to see if what you asked could be the case. I'm not saying it is not possible only that I believe with the info in front of me that it is unlikely.


                                                      Like I stated in the previous post and for the sake of being clear( and if you answered this I'm sorry I didn't catch it) have you tried using HSPA+ or E(2g) to send the texts. Have you also tried reaching out to John Legere email?


                                                      Unrelated to this issue specifically but I wanted to point out that similar issues like this have arose from other carriers like AT&T with my mom. However, again when it did happen it effected both calls and texts. Not just one specific thing.

                                                        • kyferez

                                                          Maybe it's not capacity related, but it's definitely some sort of reliability issue. For example, I sent a group chat to all of my immediate family at 2:10pm today. My phone shows it went through. NONE of them have YET to receive it and it's 4:30pm now. Yet they received other texts, my wife even received two other direct texts from me after I sent the group text.


                                                          I support worldwide Enterprise IT companies. I analyze data and packet captures and solve these sorts of issues for big companies whose names have been mentioned in this thread and who have fruit based names and Banks and Universities and Hospitals.


                                                          I will email John Legere; I hadn't thought of doing that here but it certainly worked when I emailed the NetFlix CEO about an issue I had with them, so I will give that a chance before I switch.

                                                            • dragon1562

                                                              Very cool, as a fellow customer I thank you for taking the time and effort to email John. If this is a network issue then it will be good to have fixed for everyone. Also you had me get really excited when you said you do IT work since I'm a IST major at Penn State. So some day in the future I will also be in the field.

                                                              • tmo_mike_c

                                                                It's a shame this is happening with all your lines and it looks like you done a ton of work already to get this resolved. I appreciate you coming here and answer all the questions and testing various suggestions from our users. I do feel like this is something we'll need to escalate on the network side. I know JL is big on checking his email from folks that send it to them, but I do think there's a way to get you help you're looking for. I do believe reaching out to our T-Force team through our social channels is a very good route. They are available through Facebook and Twitter plus, you can even link them to this page so they have a clear picture of what's going on. I understand you've contacted us before, but I'm sure our T-Force would love to take a shot at getting this taken care of and it's totally worth to reach out. I am very sorry you and your family have been dealing with this, and I do hope you'll give our team a chance at helping.

                                      • 454

                                        Re: Text messages are delayed sending and receiving

                                        Well that sounds frustrating!  Just a thought that may, or may not help.  I recently had a similar issues on one of the devices on my account, a Moto G5 Plus.  Obviously this is not a T-Mobile branded device, but it's compatible.  Usually when the T-Mobile sim card is used there's no need to go in and manually set up the APN, but in my case, doing so resolved the issues.  Instructions are here:  BYOD T-Mobile data & APN settings 

                                        1 of 1 people found this helpful
                                        • bartelby72

                                          People still seeing the delay? Any solution yet?

                                          • magenta5716652

                                            My wife and I both have samsung galaxy s5 and have had the same issue for about a year now sending and receiving text messages to eachother and other people on and off the tmobile network. This is so frustrating. Calls are not impacted just texting.  This is really making us not happy...we have deleted messages, taken off the apps...not working keep getting delays...just had one take 4 minutes to go thru just now....ugh!!!!!!

                                            PLEASE get working on this tmobile!!!!!!....

                                            • magenta5716652

                                              My wife and I both have samsung galaxy s5 and have had the same issue for about a year now sending and receiving text messages to eachother and other people on and off the tmobile network. This is so frustrating. Calls are not impacted just texting.  This is really making us not happy...we have deleted messages, taken off the apps...not working keep getting delays...just had one take 4 minutes to go thru just now....ugh!!!!!!

                                              PLEASE get working on this tmobile!!!!!!....

                                              • magenta5912285

                                                Just to confirm that this has been affecting me too. For months.

                                                • tmo_mike_c

                                                  Hey folks.


                                                  We understand people have been reporting some delayed messages in this thread. We'd like to get this address on a network level. If the issue still continue, please use the methods on our Contact Us page and have our Team of Experts or T-Force team file a Trouble Ticket. This issue does need to be reported to our engineering team to help get this resolved so please reach out when you get the chance. Thank you.

                                                  • npolites

                                                    Re: Text messages are delayed sending and receiving

                                                    I am also having issues in group chats. The latest one was delayed by 2 days! Everything was great with T-Mobile until they started unlimited everything and overloading their towers. Now I get not so great reception and these delays with text messages. I remember Sprint being like this before I dropped them. Looks like I may need to go to AT&T or Verizon.

                                                    • magenta1799060

                                                      So glad I finally found everyone here!!! Been having this issue AND issues with messages I delete in the SMS app randomly popping back up over and over and over. Tried tech support and Tmobile customer service and get the same...."blah blah APN blah blah clear cache, safe mode, force stop apps, reset network settings, even spent hours transferring like 5k phots to my chromebook so I could factory reset. Same messages. Same old crap. Tmobile is SO convinced it's my device or something wrong with MY wifi even after I remind them numerous times that it happens EVERYWHERE. with Wi-Fi/cell data on, with only Wi-Fi on (YES IN MULTIPLE DIFFERENT NETWORKS, CITIES, STATES), and with ONLY cellular network on. If someone asks me to check my APN or force stop the app again I'm gonna lose it. Ive spent 5 months, hundreds of dollars to upgrade my device bc, "oh it's probably the G6, OMG you have a free upgrade let's upgrade you to the G7!" And my lame a** fell for it. It's absolutely disgusting the way the tmobile employees, techs, and customer service reps just shamelessly act like they've never heard of this issue and it must just be you. Isn't that literally the definition of gaslighting? I'll be saving this thread here and putting in one last futile attempt at getting tmobile reps to cut the crap. I'll put a Trouble Ticket or a TForce Ticket or whatever T alteration y'all use.


                                                      I am also in the IT field for work, but taught myself all this stuff because I become obsessed with things I can't figure out....sometimes to my own demise. Don't know why I didnt assume Tmobile was being shady from the start? Maybe bc they've been pretty freaking great since 2012 up until just this last May. Hate when this happens to a seemingly fair company.

                                                      1 of 1 people found this helpful
                                                        • sightiiipicture

                                                          My messages are delayed anywhere from 20 minutes to 6 hours! Really sucks when wife is at the store asking if I need more beer. Then when helping unload groceries she has no beer with the statement that she texted me 40 minutes ago. Then an hour or so later lo and behold the very important message arrives at its old sweet time. In my case I ported over from AT&T and Wifi Calling and text is disabled so I only get text over cellular data. I have a Galaxy S6 Plus Edge. No option to load T-Mobile ROM either to get WiFi calling to become enabled. I have a stock AT&T firmware. When will the delayed text message issue be looked at and resolved?

                                                        • magenta5036483

                                                          I'm just chiming in here so I can follow the conversation.


                                                          I am also experiencing this. It's most apparent when using 2-factor authentication mainly because that;s when you need a text quickly. Up until a few weeks ago, I'd always get those almost instantly. Now it takes about 5 minutes every time.


                                                          It also seems to happen with regular texts between friends. I'll sometimes get 4 or 5 messages in batches instead of "real time." It's as if the phone is catching up.


                                                          Samsung Galaxy Note 8.

                                                          • svtm

                                                            Re: Text messages are delayed sending and receiving

                                                            Same issue here with multiple devices over the last 6 months. Also there are times when people will call me and it will go right to voicemail even though I have coverage. Would be nice to know when these issues are going to be addressed if T-Mobile is aware of them.

                                                            • lbuck

                                                              Re: Text messages are delayed sending and receiving

                                                              Got to jump all over this bandwagon and state that both my wife and I are having the same issues and have been for quite a while. I can open a T-Force ticket but the problem we really have here is that the only way to tell if the problem isn't fixed is to wait until someone angrily asks you why you haven't responded. Then what, open another ticket? Been with T-Mobile since 2004. Pull it together T-MOBILE...  pull it together.

                                                                • lbuck

                                                                  Re: Text messages are delayed sending and receiving

                                                                  So, wanted to provide an update but I really don't have much in the way of good news. I did open a trouble ticket and it really went nowhere. T-Mobile support sent a text, I got it. They then asked me to text myself. I did so and that worked. Then they said they would call me back in a few days to see if I had noticed any further issues. When they called I told them I didn't notice any issues but I am not going to start physically typing in time stamps and comparing send and receive times on my family and friends' phones.


                                                                  SMS shortcode, 2FA, and numerous time sensitive texts have failed to deliver or be received in a timely manner, if at all. Calls are going straight to voicemail without the phone ringing. I actually had to explain to my boss that I was not ignoring him but that I did not get his text until 5 hours later. In short, this is getting out of hand and I'm really not sure that I can justify keeping T-Mobile. Not trying to be dramatic or anything but I am the emergency contact for my family and I need to know that when I have good cellular service in a major metro area that I can be reached. Right now, I do not believe that to be the case.


                                                                  T-Mobile, if you're listening, I've been with you for a long time but if you don't meaningfully address this issue we are going to have to go our separate ways. Contact me if you're serious about addressing this.

                                                                • ml1969

                                                                  Chiming in...I am having the exact same problem. I miss texts all the time. They all come in at the same time and randomly. I just switched to a brand new OnePlus 6 t. thought maybe I was having software issues with my old phone. I have had this phone for a couple of days and just realized I was getting delayed text again. I also am having phone calls not come through when I know that I have service. The calls go directly to voicemail. So I'm not getting most of my text and some of my  phone calls. I have been a loyal T-Mobile customer for over 10 years and really want this to work. Has anyone found a fix for this.

                                                                  • magenta6747681

                                                                    I'm having both issues referred to in this string (delayed texts and calls  going directly to voicemail). Been happening for more a yearyear with multiple devices. Made multiple changes to settings. No difference. Must be a network issue. Zip code is 98122 but happens wherever I travel across the country.

                                                                    • magenta6982421

                                                                      I am having very similar issues.  It takes forever to send and receive group (more than one!).  In the text app I see a message saying "tap to download".  When I tap it goes round and round forever.  Sometimes the messages download after 24 hours!  I just spoke to customer service who could not do anything.  They have sent the issue to "tech experts".  I hope this gets fixed!

                                                                      • lewinr

                                                                        Same problem here.  Thank god for WhatsApp which we can use for personal messages.  But this problem with SMS is a becoming critical because now so many online accounts require 2 factor authentication via SMS.


                                                                        I really do not like the attitude of T-Mobile that it MUST be a problem with the device.  I use multiple phones with multiple providers/networks both inside and outside the US, and have changed phones and SIM cards, etc, and ONLY have the problem with the T-Mobile network across all my devices.  Getting messages on the mobile networks in the third world countries which I visit is more reliable than T-Mobile.


                                                                        T-Mobile:  YOU HAVE A PROBLEM.  It's not us, it's you.  Fix it.

                                                                        • magenta7077436

                                                                          I've been having the same issue for MONTHS, well, since I joined T-Mobile. I have called NUMEROUS times and filed numerous tickets but NOTHING has been fixed. I plan on switching companies next month because I'm tired of paying for a service that I don't receive. I can easily say that T-Mobile is THE WORST cell company I have dealt with. At least with StraightTalk you have great service, it just sucks that their customer support is stationed out of the country. Good luck to the rest of you that decide to stay with a sub par company. You deserve better. After all, you are paying for it!

                                                                          • magenta7258852

                                                                            Same problem here as well. Nothing to add to the conversation other than another upset customer. I thought it was just me though since my wife's older phone doesn't seem to have any issues.

                                                                            • amc2002

                                                                              Re: Text messages are delayed sending and receiving

                                                                              This used to happen once in a great while for me, but since the new year it's been happening pretty regularly. Makes my phone just about impossible to use for some banking and financial products that require SMS and don't yet allow 2FA. Wish T-Mo would fix it.

                                                                              • drmomentum

                                                                                For a long time (well over a year) I've had delays in SMS messages that make it almost impossible to use my phone for many 2FA purposes.Galaxy S8.I called T-Mobile support over a year ago because I have an even more serious problem: my phone sometimes doesn't ring when I get a call. It's not a device problem as far as I can tell. It's not just happening on WiFi. None of the suggestions I've found online or been given by support has changed anything.t should


                                                                                I am wondering whether I just ought to look for another service for my whole family the next time I upgrade my phone.


                                                                                I'd contact support, but they couldn't help with the phone ringing situation, and I can see here they're not solving the SMS delay problems some people are seeing. I think it's just T-mobile.


                                                                                This is really too bad, because before this I was enthusiastic telling people T-mobile is great.

                                                                                  • amc2002

                                                                                    Just an update - in my case, it did appear to be short codes were not activated for some reason. I was getting SMS from people, but not from banks and such.

                                                                                    The issues started recently, so it seems there must have been an account change at some point. Since contacting T-Mo and getting a rep who knew what they were doing, SMS seems fine.

                                                                                    1 of 1 people found this helpful
                                                                                      • drmomentum

                                                                                        Thank you for this message, amc2002.


                                                                                        I'm glad you got your problem resolved. Interesting that it was the shorter SMS messages that were the problem. I think I'm getting messages from people fine, so maybe I should contact T-mo. Perhaps they'd be better at solving this problem than the other problems I'm having.


                                                                                        Still waiting on a 2FA message from LinkedIn that I requested almost an hour ago.


                                                                                        Oop - I actually JUST got it. But my session had timed out in the interim. Marvelous.

                                                                                          • amc2002

                                                                                            I would contact T-Force via twitter or use the chat after you log into your T-Mo account and just say you're getting SMS messages from regular people, but not from financial institutions and other 2FA type messages. I did get the occasional 2FA type message from one bank (I think it was Chase), but others went into the void. They changed something and did a remote refresh (so they said) and after that I was good. Hopefully they'll know what to look for if you put it in those terms. I saw other places online IIRC that mentioned they changed something with short codes recently to combat spam or something. Good luck!

                                                                                      • rallypoint

                                                                                        I've been struggling with this issue for almost a year now.  Yeah; I've talked to customer service many times over the phone and in the store.  I've even went through T-Force and they worked with higher tech support to look into the network logs, do traces, etc etc.  They always come back with the same answer... it's my phone... oh and my wife's phone...  and you all having problems; yeah it's your phone too!  If we're to belive T-mobile there's A LOT of really bad phones out there that we all must upgrade now!

                                                                                        I love how they are always like "just swap your SIM to another phone man!"  Yeah, sorry... I don't have a pile of T-mobile phones laying around to use for troubleshooting.  So you want me to go buy another one... just to test?  Get it all setup with the apps and settings I need?  Neat... thanks...  Oh I did all the other suggestions... change APN settings, re boot, hard reset.  That hard reset and getting everything installed and configured again was sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo worth it!  Oh wait; nope... still missing calls while never getting a notification of a missed call and delayed SMS msgs. 


                                                                                        Well I'm finally caving in and replacing my phone that's only a year and a half old.  Love the phone; great horse power for a fair price, nice camera, plenty of ROM capacity, etc etc... better in every way than the phones I can afford from T-mobile directly... but what else can I do?  They keep telling me my phone isn't an official T-mobile phone so they constantly deflect back to that point and they keep telling me to swap my SIM into a T-mobile phone... 


                                                                                        So here goes my $150-$200 test experiment! 


                                                                                        Another point that isn't talked about... lets say I agree with T-mobile:  I need all new T-mobile phones!  Well there's 5 phones on my plan and none of them came directly from a T-mobile store (Amazon T-mobile unlocked phones).  This is going to end up costing me over $500 to replace phones that are otherwise fine.  I didn't budget $500+ for a smartphone refresh at any point this year... for some dumb reason I thought I'd get at least 2 years out of a phone. 

                                                                                        • magenta8233179

                                                                                          Having the same issue with not receiving SMS message or receiving duplicate messages and getting the spinning wheel when sending SMS. I'm using a S9+. This year the issue has been worse than ever. T-Mobile, you need to fix these issues. Paying for this 'service' is ridiculous.

                                                                                          • magenta8774802

                                                                                            Yes we also get this problem but most of the time we dont get decent service  coverage. Beware if you file FCC Tmobile supervisor will refuse to engage further and indicate you can only communicate with their legal department at physical address. Really? retaliation if you dare to contact the FCC regarding an issue they refuse to address. I have the communication saved and clearly this is way out of line. Wonder what the FCC position is on Tmobile refusing any contact other than through legal? Well I guess I will supply them my chat history and they will see how Tmobile respond to complaints. They cut off all communication. 

                                                                                            • lllionheart

                                                                                              I'm on the new one plus 7 pro and not even 2 feet from my wifi router using TMobile data and wifi 5g active and still have the sending messages issue explain that bs