Technical question

So, all mobile phones have SMS or texting on them.

Is there any way to turn that feature off?

Specifically, a way to turn it off so that anyone who tries to text you knows that it didn\’t go through? And that it won\’t?


18 thoughts on “Technical question”

  1. Actually, you will get a delivery receipt. The problem is most people don’t have their phones display them (or the phones don’t offer that functionality).

    I don’t know if what you want is available, although it would be technically possible (but perhaps not feasible).

  2. Possible for the networks to do, but given their infrastructure and resources it may not be feasible for them to put it in place.

  3. SMS is actually an engineering funtion to test that signals were carrying over the network. use as a messaging facility came later. I guess you cannot switch it off because it is endemic in the network unless you have an engineering-grade phone

  4. Just out of interest, err, why? In terms of intrusiveness, I’d infinitely rather have a phone that took texts and not calls than vice versa…

    Tim adds: Well, I’m coming bak to London, need a new UK phone…and don’t actually like texting. Never really got the hang of it. So I’d rather not have the feature than people simply think I’m rude for not answering them….

  5. “There is no way to confirm receipt either.”

    Eh? My SonyEricsson has, and my previous several Nokias all had delivery reports. I use it to check when someone lands from a long flight – I send them a welcome to wherever text, and then when hours later I get a receipt confirmation beep I know they turned their phone back on after arriving.

  6. Just learn to text, grandad! Sheesh…

    Tim adds: I have a Nokia at the moment and for the life of me I cannot work out how to write on it. OK, maybe that’s too strong. But it does require more learning effort to get it to display the message I want it to send rather than the message it thinks I want to send than I’m prepared to invest in it. More investment than any return I think I’ll get from it.

  7. Get an iPhone – it manages txt msgs in the same way as email, so anyone capable of using email software shouldn’t have any problems with it…

    Tim adds: Even worse: doesn’t have a keyboard of any kind! And who wants email on a phone?

  8. You can trivially reprogram your phone to fail SMS, send or receive – just set the SMS ‘service center’ to something other than your operator’s default.

    I’m afraid that I have no idea how to set a Nokia phone to respond to contact with “despite all indications to the contrary, actually a social luddite!”

    Perhaps all you actually need to do is to turn predictive texting off – that way, it will only render what you actually type?

  9. text and save a universal message – ‘sorry – please phone or email, I can’t and won’t reply via sms’ and use it to reply to all texts.
    for a small sum I’ll text you myself with the message, which you can then save!

    Tim adds: We’re all assuming a much greater level of technical knowledge than here actually is here. Howwould you “save” an SMS? How would you use a saved one to respond to another? What is the SMS service centre? How would one turn off predictive text?

    To me a phone is something you talk to people on. Finis.

  10. I think what’s driving you nuts is the predictive texting feature. I loathe and execrate that piece of crap, too, so I turn it off. Nokias will have a setting in one of the configuration menus to turn it off. Exactly where is an RTFM question (if you don’t have the manual, PDF copies are available from Nokia if memory serves). Normally you start to type a text, go to ‘Options’ and then ‘Dictionary’ and choose ‘dictionary off’.

    As for delivery receipts: that’s network dependent and a request for a receipt is flagged in the outgoing message. It’s at the request of the sender, not the receiver. I guess more modern Java-enabled phones might have some sort of mod that enabled you to set an automatic receipt notice but that is hardware dependent.


    I loathe texting as well. Fiddly and time consuming. Started using e-txt a couple of years ago and buy £15-worth of text message credit at a time. Keeps me going for about 18 months. Txt pops up on phone, reply over pc keyboard, recipient sees it as from my mobile number.

    Best of both worlds.

  12. Oh, Lordy – just tell your friends not to text you and don’t answer the rest. People will give up soon enough! 😉

  13. Pingback: “Is there any way to turn the SMS feature off?” : Mobile Industry Review

  14. “You can trivially reprogram your phone to fail SMS, send or receive – just set the SMS ’service center’ to something other than your operator’s default.”

    Rubbish. That’ll just stop you sending, your operators service centre isn’t used when receiving messages.

    At least some (perhaps all?) of the UK operators will allow you to have SMS disabled on your account. I dread to think how much time you’d have to spend talking to customer services to get them to do it though. Perhaps tell them you’re being harassed and get your call escalated to someone who can help.

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