What Is the Difference Between Green and Blue Texts on iPhone Messages?

To understand the difference between green and blue texts on an iPhone, one must know the messaging systems used for each color. Green texts indicate Short Message Service (SMS) messages, commonly referred to as text messages, sent through the cellular network. Blue texts, on the other hand, signify that the message was sent via Apple’s proprietary iMessage service, which requires an internet connection. By reading this article, you’ll grasp the distinctions between these two types of messages, their implications, and how they affect your communication on an iPhone.

After completing the action of learning the differences between green and blue texts on an iPhone, you’ll know when you’re using cellular network or internet for messaging. You’ll also be able to identify if the recipient of your message is an iPhone user or not.


Have you ever noticed how some texts on your iPhone are green and others are blue? What’s all that about? Well, this is actually a pretty important feature and understanding it can make a big difference in how you communicate. It’s not just about aesthetics; the color of your messages signifies what type of message you’re sending and how it’s being sent. This is vital for iPhone users to know because it affects messaging capabilities, potential costs, and whether or not certain features are available in your conversation.

The difference between green and blue texts on an iPhone comes down to the messaging services used: SMS and iMessage. SMS is the standard text messaging service that works across all mobile phones, while iMessage is exclusive to Apple devices. Knowing this difference can save you from unexpected charges on your phone bill and explain why sometimes you can’t send certain types of messages to some people. So, let’s dive into the colorful world of iPhone messaging and clear up any confusion.

Step by Step Tutorial: Understanding Green and Blue Texts on an iPhone

Before we get into the steps, this tutorial will help you identify which messaging service you’re using when you send a text from your iPhone. This is key to understanding the difference between green and blue texts and knowing their implications.

Step 1: Send a Text Message

To determine if a message will be green or blue, simply send a text to a contact.

When you send a text, your iPhone will automatically decide whether to send it as an SMS or an iMessage. If the recipient has an Apple device with iMessage enabled, the text will appear blue. If not, it’ll be green, indicating an SMS.

Step 2: Check the Color of the Sent Message

Look at the color of the message bubble after sending your text.

A blue bubble means the message was sent via iMessage. A green bubble indicates an SMS message. This color-coding is an easy visual cue to show which service was used.


No SMS ChargesWhen you send a blue text, it means you’re using iMessage, which operates over an internet connection (Wi-Fi or mobile data) instead of the cellular network. This can save you from incurring SMS charges, especially when sending messages internationally.
Delivery and Read ReceiptsBlue texts, or iMessages, offer the ability to receive delivery and read receipts. This way, you know not only if your message has been delivered but also if it’s been read by the recipient.
Enhanced FeaturesiMessage allows you to send various types of media, like photos and videos, without any reduction in quality. You can also use features like message effects, Animoji, and more, which are not available in standard SMS messages.


Internet RequirementiMessage requires an internet connection, so if you or the recipient is not connected to Wi-Fi or mobile data, you won’t be able to send or receive blue texts.
Limited to Apple DevicesiMessage is exclusive to Apple devices, so if you’re messaging someone with a non-Apple phone, you’ll be limited to sending green texts (SMS).
Potential Data ChargesWhile iMessage avoids SMS charges, it does use data. If you’re not connected to Wi-Fi, this could lead to data charges depending on your mobile plan.

Additional Information

While both green and blue texts serve the basic function of messaging, iMessage offers a richer communication experience with features like group messaging, message encryption, and digital touch messages. It’s also important to note that you can turn iMessage off, causing all messages to send as SMS (green texts), which can be helpful if you’re having trouble with internet-based messaging.

Sometimes, iMessages might be sent as SMS messages if there’s an issue with the internet connection. This will turn blue texts to green. So, if your texts suddenly change color, it’s worth checking your connection. Also, remember that carrier charges may apply for SMS messages, while iMessages will only affect your data usage unless you’re on Wi-Fi.


  1. Send a text message to determine its color.
  2. Check the color of the sent message bubble to identify the messaging service.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if I send an iMessage to someone without an iPhone?

If you try to send an iMessage to someone who doesn’t have an iPhone or iMessage turned off, your iPhone will send the message as an SMS (green text) instead.

Can I turn off iMessage and only send SMS messages?

Yes, you can turn off iMessage in the Messages settings on your iPhone. This will cause all your messages to be sent as SMS (green texts).

Will I be charged for sending iMessages?

No, iMessages do not incur SMS charges as they are sent over an internet connection. However, if you’re not on Wi-Fi, it may use your mobile data, which could lead to data charges.

Why did my iMessage send as an SMS (green text)?

This usually happens if there’s an issue with your internet connection or if the recipient is not connected to the internet. In such cases, iMessage will automatically revert to SMS.

Can I send photos and videos as iMessages?

Yes, you can send multimedia messages via iMessage without any loss in quality, unlike with SMS where you might encounter limitations.


In the world of iPhone messaging, knowing the difference between green and blue texts is more than just understanding a color scheme. It’s about recognizing the type of communication service you’re using, its features, and its limitations. Green texts, or SMS messages, are a universal method of communication that work across all types of phones, but they may come with charges and fewer features. Blue texts, on the other hand, denote the use of iMessage, which is a more sophisticated service exclusive to Apple devices, offering a wide range of features without additional costs, provided you have an internet connection.

So, next time you’re typing away on your iPhone, take a moment to appreciate the color of your texts, for they tell a story of connection, technology, and sometimes, the unavoidable frustrations of trying to send that perfect photo when the Wi-Fi is down. Keep exploring and using these messaging services to their full potential, and you’ll master the art of iPhone communication in no time.

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