Text messages are delayed sending and receiving

  • 3 January 2018
  • 67 replies

Userlevel 2

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.


Best answer by kyferez 10 February 2018, 05:16

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67 replies

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!

I have issue of text will simply not send, not matter how many bars of service. Just this morning, I received two texts, then tried to send one and it fails! Restart phone and it will send. I may send messages half of day, then suddenly won't send anymore. Using a S9 from Tmobile. Highly frustrated as this is my work device. Very random, no pattern that I can find. Will not keep service if problem can't get resolved..

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. 

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.

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.

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. 

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

2 years and this is still an issue.... come on..... is there a fix or is it getting ignored?

I also have had this problem for a while. Finally decided to start looking into it only to find its been an issue for 2+ years and still persisting..
I think I need to check Sprint, Verizon, AT&T and see if any of them have WiFi calling and if so I might just switch. Between being made to do 2FA via SMS to my phone, which is delayed, every time I want to log in to pay my bill, to Tmobile charging me for "visual voicemail" that I never opted into and can't seem to cancel, to this text delay. It has gotten to be pretty dang annoying.

It is difficult to understand how this issue has been going on for years to a significant number of people and on different phones and yet it still has not been resolved and people are still told to file a ticket with Tech Support describing their issue in detail.

I had this same issue of delays with both Sending and Receiving simple text messages (no photos or group text) with my Samsung Galaxy On5 and I'm having it with my Samsung Galaxy A10e. Like the other people, it is intermittent. Sometimes I get the messages instantly and other times I do not get them for hours or even the next day. It does not seem to matter if I am on the T Mobile 4G LTE network or on my 300 Mbps AT&T WiFi at home. It also does not seem to matter if the other person is on T Mobile, AT&T, or some other Network Provider. Either it is something inherent to Samsung phones and their firmware/software or it is in the T Mobile network and/or software. Either way, people should not have to clear the cache and reboot their phone just to send or receive a simple text message and, in the end, have file a ticket with Tech Support.

Does your network get intermittently overloaded and bog down or lose data transmission in various cell towers?

I know there are some places that are dead spots where signals are not received, but in those areas, you generally cannot make or receive phone calls or text messages, but that does not seem to be the case here because it has been going on for way too long and happening to way too many people.



Switching carriers may not help. From what I've read, this happens with all carriers, T Mobile, AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, and etc and with both Android and IPhones. In some cases, it depends on where you are and whether or not you're in a dead spot and have low or no signal strength, a low battery, or the phone turned off. In other cases, it could be your message queue or message log are full and in other cases, it was due to network traffic overloading the network providers system. In some cases, apparently there is a message queue timer (typically 10 minutes) and once the timer goes to zero, the message is deleted. There was even one case where Valentine's Day messages for nearly 170,000 people were not delivered until several months later in November due to a problem in the system of a company that apparently nearly all network providers use for text messaging. 

Same happens to me with voice and messages, even in “good” coverage areas! Cell data is fine, though.  Calls to a person who also has TMo, standing next to me, go straight  to voicemail and their phone never rings. Random messages take several minutes before the phone shows “sent.”  Even if the are “sent,” random messages can take forever to get to recipient, even when they are on Tmo, too. If calls get through they are dropped a few seconds into the call…  repeatedly… sometimes with strange alien sounding static.  When receiving calls, the call will get dropped a few seconds into the call. IF the caller is nice enough to call me back, usually the call is dropped again, and again!!!  If I change sim cards (to an ATT sim, for example) there are zero issues so it doesn’t appear to be my phone. Also, I can avoid dropped calls by switching to 2g service, but then I don’t have decent data speeds.  Finally, if I use any kind of VOIP app (like Google Hangouts/Skype/Duo/any, not only are those calls connected every time, but everyone tells me the call quality is way better than when I can reach then with a TMo voice call. I can watch the phone struggle to choose between lte/4g/3g/etc even while standing within site of TMobile cell tower in a solid 4g service area.Clearly there is something going on with the voice/mms side of things at TMo.  Calling TMo gets me a “tech expert” who assures me the problem will be resolved in three days and they will reach out.  But the problem is NOT solved in three days and no one reaches back to check.  Unreliable service is the same as no service, no matter the price. Time to switch?

Dec 2020, South to Central Florida.

3 phones, two LG V60s and one Huawei Mate 20 X.


All worked fine for a couple months.


Started noticing messages sent via Google Messages with RCS turned on would be sent but then hours later show not sent. Messages coming in delayed by minutes to days. These were to over 20 different contacts and from numbers like Google Amazon and Banks sending 2 factor ID codes.


Also noting that calls between me and other T-Mobile users would go directly to voicemail even if I was in Orlando and they in Miami or Fort Myers. 


Multiple handsets in multiple cities and T-Mobile just likes to say oh it's probably because of your phone please delete everything get off my line so I can stuffy face with another bagel. Spent hours talking to "engineers" to no avail. Hell even was able to provide concrete proof of FIVE phones all on T-Mobile in a part of Fort Myers with 5G and LTE and despite full bars on all phones none could actually send or receive data. After first being told all 5 phones were defective because T-Mobile is perfect a engineering ticket was opened and 4 months later..... You guessed it closed out with no call back and issue remains.


Last five years I lived in Korea and Japan and this crap is why I absolutely hate being back here. 1/10 the speed, 1/3 the coverage, 1/100 of the reliability all at ex the price. 



As of 1/21/2021, I have also been having this problem...who knows for how long. I noticed it for approximately the last year. 
it is starting to affect my work now! I literally received a message like 10 hours later. If T-Mobile can’t fix this problem I will be switching the service 

I have been having the same issue for the last year+.  Switched from a Note 10, to S20, to Iphone 12 Pro and back to an S21 Ultra and the issue still persists.  I guess we can rule out the make of the phone.  I have been with TMO for over a decade and it has gotten worse in the last year, it was sporadic at first then in the last year it has gotten even worse, to the point where I have to schedule a daily reboot on my device and that doesn’t guarantee I will receive my messages midday without a reboot.  After a reboot, the notifications and texts would pile in, in mass, and sometimes it will last a day without having to recycle the phone.  I’ve lost out on business due to this issue and been in the dog house with my GF, from not responding to texts I never received or received a day or days late.  Along with this issue, I’ve also noticed when downloading or updating apps (on android) it is also extremely slow or a reboot would be required.  Not sure if this is the same for everyone.  We need someone from the engineering side of TMO to look into this, as it is affecting multiple people (however, I am comforted to know I am not the only one).  Also note I get nearly full reception and still this happens.  AND, I have to keep reactivating my visual voicemail every time I switch from wifi to mobile network and vice versa, which is multiple times a day!!!!!


I've started having this issue

I’ve just started having this happen in the last week or so, and it has quickly gotten a lot worse. Most of my attempts to text family or friends have just...sat there. I’ve tried the hard reboot, switching from wi-fi to 5G and back to wi-fi, atc., and it doesn’t help. My phone is a moto g stylus 5G, got it a couple of months ago, and it was fine, until very recently. My “ancient” LG K7 (?) that I used for several years was a LOT simpler and more reliable! I’m about to switch back to it, if the SIM card would switch back to it!