Digits eating incoming text pictures?


    I recently enabled digits, and now if someone texts me a picture from a non-iPhone, digits gets it ok, but the picture is not showing up in my regular iphone Messages app. Regular (I.e. just word/SMS) texts show up both places as expected. Digits is eating the pictures...


    Anyone else seeing this? Anyone know a fix?


    (Yes, latest update of the digits app on phone and pc. iOS 11.2.6 on an iphone8. I haven't had time to do more testing and have logged out of digits so I don't know if it's only android senders, or if other MMS messages (e.g. emojis) are impacted too.)

      All replies

      • tmo_marissa

        Re: Digits eating incoming text pictures?

        Hey, andrewlburt! Thanks for posting -- sorry to read about your missing photo messages!
        One thing that's worth calling out here is that when you're using DIGITS and receive messages from other iOS users, those messages will default to iMessage. To resolve this, you could disable iMessage on your device and solely use DIGITS. Similarly, messages that come in to DIGITS (from an Android user, which don't have the same iMessage default) may not appear in iMessage. I know that you're not testing for patterns at this point, but just from what you've described, in your case it sounds like you're still receiving simple text messages from Android users in both iMessage and DIGITS, but any images that were included in that message thread aren't appearing. Because DIGITS and iMessage are two separate platforms, some irregularity in this regard is expected -- although our current known issue doesn't call out the image piece specifically, I don't think this is out of the norm. That said, if you do want to test again, this would be something we would encourage you to contact our Tech team to review once you have a few examples within a 24 hour period, so that they could run traces to confirm whether it's expected behavior between iMessage/DIGITS, or if there's a bigger issue at play. If the issue at this point is isolated to images only, it would be great to know for sure so that our content could be worded to call that out specifically -- that could help our frontline describe the experience for customers going forward!

          • andrewlburt

            Re: Digits eating incoming text pictures?

            Hi, Marissa, thanks for looking into this. I'm pretty sure it's a bug in Digits somewhere, not just an interaction to document.   It seems somewhat like what you describe, but with the key difference that I was logged out of Digits on my phone when the missing pic/text arrived. That shouldn't happen, methinks, wearing my comp.sci. professor hat. That is, even if Digits is supposed to take precedence if it's active, if it's logged out it shouldn't be keeping texts or MMSs from iMessage.


            I had one of these "eaten" pics today, and I thought I was logged out of Digits everywhere (not on phone, not on pc, not on ipad, etc.). I had logged out everywhere since I wanted to get the pics arriving in iMessage, as if Digits didn't exist. However, I still had a case of a diverted pic.


            One problem is if Digits eats pics, I might not even know I had a picture at all. Here's the example from today-- This is what I saw on my phone in iMessage (and I was logged out of Digits everywhere, to my knowledge; I was 100% logged out on my phone)--



            The sender seemed to be referring to a picture, but there was no pic on my phone, so I logged into digits on my pc, and I saw this:





            Aha, there's the photo! Which I would have liked to have seen on my phone..... And if he hadn't tipped me off that there was a pic, I wouldn't have known at all.


            This behavior just started when I enabled Digits. (Kinda sorry I did! Mainly I wanted to use digits so I could check on texts when I was at my pc but my phone was in another room.)  I've had lots of photos from this guy before I enabled Digits that showed up fine in iMessage, so I doubt it's just him suddenly having a problem sending to iphones the same exact time I enable digits. Don't think that's a coincidence.


            It's hard for me to test this since apparently most people I know have iphones. I don't know this guy well enough to do testing with (he's a contractor I'm paying, so I don't really want to pay for his time to debug your Digits bug). I went looking through my text threads, and, wow, everybody I know well enough to ask for some testing is using an iphone. Plenty of people I only sorta know with Androids, but nobody well enough to debug with.


            So, weird, and annoying. I think it's fair to say this is serious a bug that needs fixing.


            I'm going to try deleting the digits app from my phone in case it's somehow got a hook intercepting MMSs, maybe that will work. But if I do get things back to normal I'll sure be hesitant ever to turn digits back on. Hope you can fix this so folks like me don't feel digits is dangerous to play with. I love the concept of digits, but it really has to be ready for prime time, or it risks alienating folks. I've been with T-Mobile for, yeah, like 15 years, and if this problem isn't resolved so I can get all my texts, it is definitely the kind of reason I would have no choice but to switch away from T-Mobile--I can't have texts getting eaten. Reliability can't be up in the air like this just because I experimented with a new service, and now can't get out of the quicksand. Even assuming this problem is resolved, (now wearing tech CEO hat) I don't think "we'll document it" is the right answer. It's a bug, not a feature, and the thing to do with bugs is fix them quickly... Thx.

              • tmo_marissa

                Re: Digits eating incoming text pictures?

                Thank you so much for such a thorough and detailed response -- unrelated to DIGITS: your friend has a lovely floor!  

                I hear you -- I'm sorry if that came across as flippant; it definitely wasn't my intent! Basically, we know that DIGITS and iMessage don't interact with 100% continuity; and at this point we acknowledge that as a "known issue" -- not necessarily a bug, but a platform limitation. I'm not sure if that's a limitation that can be amended in a future state, or if so, what the timeline looks like. What I can say is that although our documents call out that DIGITS may "intercept" messages from iMessage (paraphrased), and to prevent that we recommend disabling iMessage and using DIGITS, it doesn't call out specifics regarding the image grab you're seeing. If that's the true limit of DIGITS/iMessage at this point, then we'd definitely like to be up front with our customers about the specifics! That's something that we'd need to have customers file tickets with examples for the DIGITS engineering team to review and trace in order to update... or ultimately solve for.


                I know you logged out of DIGITS everywhere, but I think you're right -- there may be somewhere on the back end that DIGITS is still hanging on. If you're not seeing test messages after uninstalling the app, can you try removing yourself from DIGITS in the MyDIGITS portal? The steps are under Remove user here: https://support.t-mobile.com/docs/DOC-37011#secondheading. Please let me know how that goes! Thank you!

                  • andrewlburt

                    Re: Digits eating incoming text pictures?

                    Hi, thanks. That shows I'm logged out of all digits devices, so I just need someone with an android phone to text me a photo to see if I receive it. Since everyone I know seems to use an iphone could you please have someone at your end text me a photo from an android phone? (I assume you can look up my account from my username; the line in question is the one with the phone number ending in "41".) It doesn't have to be anything interesting, just a picture of a wall or floor or sky or something, but send some text also so I know there's supposed to be a pic. Thanks.

                      • tmo_marissa

                        Re: Digits eating incoming text pictures?

                        Aw, darn it! I'm so sorry, andrewlburt -- we don't have a secure platform for account verification on this public user forum, so we're not able to look up those details. I feel like most of my friends have iPhones, too (I do not, I have an android device).


                        I know that our internal teams do have a test MMS function in their troubleshooting flow, but that requires account access, and I'm not sure if it "mimics" Android or iOS specifically, but it seems worth a shot! If calling in isn't ideal you can contact our T-Force team -- in Twitter (via DM) and on Facebook (via Message) we do have a secure platform to verify account info!