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What does Sent as SMS via Server mean?

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Recently, many users came across a complaint that stated that whenever a user sends a message, instead of the usual read receipts, the message “Sent as SMS via Server” appears. This was a new thing that users were seeing in their default message application on their Android devices. The curiosity to know what it is was spread all across the internet.

The change in the read receipt occurred because of the RCS messaging protocol rolled out by Google in 2020. Let’s dive in to see find out what “Sent as SMS via Server” means.

Also read: How to fix ‘Message blocking is active’ error?

What is RCS?

RCS stands for Rich Communication Services. RCS is a new messaging protocol that provides users access to features like group chats, sharing images — features you’d find in messaging apps like WhatsApp, Messenger or iMessage.

RCS has emerged as a replacement to the widely used SMS protocol as the primary text platform of Android devices. The receipt “Sent as SMS via Server” mostly appears when sending RCS messages on Samsung’s native messaging application where the users couldn’t see the usual delivered, read or sent receipts.

Obviously, users weren’t very keen on losing their read receipts. Here are some user complaints spread across the internet ever since RCS took over.

“I have a Galaxy S9+ on Verizon network (using Samsung message app) and after the last update instead of read receipts (sent, delivered, read, etc) I get ‘sent as sms via server’.” 

Source – Reddit.

“Hey @Telstra  – what’s up with msg service? All my messages (chat & MMS) are being sent as “SMS via Server”.

Source – Twitter.

“It works for me most of the time. When it does fail, it says “sent as SMS via server”. On WiFi it seems to be reliable but mobile data it’s a bit sketchy.”

Source – Whirlpool forum.

Also read: How to fix Security Policy Prevents Use of Camera on Samsung Phones?

Fix for the “Sent as SMS via Server” receipt

You can disable the “Show when delivered” option in your Samsung device to stop the “Sent as SMS via Server” receipt and get the usual text receipts back.

Telstra Support shared this fix and stated:

“You can change the setting in Messages, click the 3 dot icon, Settings, More settings, Text Messages, and enable “Show when delivered”. That switched it back from showing “sent as SMS via server” to Delivered/Read. It’s a bit strange that it’s only happening for one number, might be something on their end.” 

Source – Telstra Support.

There is no response from Samsung, Google, or any other carrier, mobile brand yet regarding the “Sent as SMS via Server” message having a clear explanation for this receipt.

Also read: Your SIM sent a text message: What does it mean and how to stop it?

Chetali Shah

Chetali Shah

An avid reader and an engineering student. Love to code and read books. Always curious to learn new things :)