Switched from iPhone? Here’s how to get your SMS messages back

Apple has released a new web tool that may finally solve the problem of iMessage hijacking the text messages of former iPhone users.

The flaw – which PC Pro first reported a year ago – meant that users didn’t receive SMS text messages from other contacts with iPhones after they had transferred their SIM to a new phone.

Apple’s iMessage effectively hijacks SMS messages sent to other iPhone users, routing the message via Apple’s own servers. If the user didn’t deactivate iMessage before decommissioning their old iPhone, text messages from other iPhone users would never appear on the new phone.

Apple iMessage website

Now, Apple has released a new web tool that lets old iPhone customers switch off iMessage, without having to use the old handset, which may already have been traded in or sold.

The service requires the former iPhone owners to enter their mobile phone number. Apple then texts the customer a six-digit code which they have to enter into the Apple web form to confirm they wish to deregister from iMessage.

The problem has been a long-running distraction for Apple, with some former customers in the US even filing a class-action lawsuit against the company for interfering with the delivery of text messages.

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