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Posts Tagged ‘imessage

A cheap phone plan has hidden costs.

I have two phone accounts for my family that are under a special MyRepublic phone plan. I could pay for three accounts and they would still cost less than one low end plan with a competitor.

So what is not to love?

Phantom international SMS charges by MyRepublic.

Over the last few months, I noticed that some bills had mysterious international SMS charges. When I inquired, I received a link to a newly minted FAQ. It looks like I was not the only one worried about phantom SMS charges.

It turns out that activations of iCloud or iMessage incur international SMS charges because these are sent to UK servers. Since one might have more than one device, this can add up.

The new FAQ does not provide advice on how to avoid this charge. Apparently, a service provider does not have to be helpful by providing that service. So I searched online.

A few minutes of searching revealed two things: 1) This problem was more common than I thought (customers the world over railing against their telcos), and 2) the solution might be right under our thumbs.

Hot Cancel instead of OK.

When prompted to activate, tap on Cancel instead of OK. Apparently the service will still be activated. I must remember to try this the next time this invariably happens.

I change my passwords at least once a year. This is a personal security precaution that sometimes has unforeseen consequences.

For example, after changing my Apple account password, the SMS forwarding feature from my iPhone to other devices like my Macs got disabled.

When I reactivated the feature, I should have been prompted to enter a four-digit code generated on the target device into the iPhone. However, the code did not appear.

Here is a workaround. To enable text message forwarding and get four-digit confirmation codes after changing my Apple password:

1. Disable and then reenable iMessage on the iPhone (Settings -> Messages).

imessage1

2. Ensure you are logged in to iCloud on the iPhone and target devices.

3. Enable forwarding on the iPhone to other devices (Settings -> Messages -> Text Message Forwarding). Do this one at a time, that is, enable the device, get the code, enter the code. Then repeat for other devices.

imessage2

Other information I found online was a start but inadequate. So I am adding more currency to the pool of information.


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