Why Does It Say “Message Blocking Is Active” on iPhone?

Nothing is more frustrating than when you send a text and receive a notification that reads “message blocking is active” notification. It’s just as frustrating as when your partner stops sharing their location with you.

It can be confusing and frustrating, especially if it’s someone that you frequently talk to. So, why does it say “message blocking is active” on your iPhone?

It says “message blocking is active” on your iPhone if the recipient blocked your number or you have them blocked. Open your iPhone settings, scroll down to “Phone”, and select “Blocked” to access your blocked contacts. Search through the list to see if you have the number blocked and remove it from the list to reach them.

Otherwise, it is a sign that the recipient has blocked your number if you get a “message blocking is active” notification. This can also happen if the recipient is unable to receive iMessages and you’ll need to resend it as an SMS text message. Follow along as we explore why it says “message blocking is active” on your iPhone.

What Does it Mean When it Says Message Blocking on iPhone?

It means that you have accidentally or intentionally blocked a number when it says “message blocking is active” on your iPhone. Blocking a phone number or contact will prevent you from receiving messages and calls from a particular number. This function will also block you from contacting the number that is on your block list.

Conversely, you may receive this message if you text message somebody who has blocked you. Android and T-Mobile users sometimes receive the message “free msg receiver unable to receive message”. This means the same thing as “message blocking is active” and there may be nothing that you can do about it.

You can only resolve this problem if it occurs on your end. For example, you cannot disable the “message blocking is active” prompt if the recipient is the one who blocked you. You can only disable this function if it was you who blocked a number.

How to Turn off Message Blocking on iPhone

You can turn off message blocking on your iPhone through your phone’s settings. There are a few ways to fix this problem, but it only works if you are the one who blocked a particular number. None of the following solutions would work if a recipient blocked your phone number. Let’s explore the best solutions when your iPhone says, “message blocking is active”.

1. Open Your Settings

Open your iPhone’s settings menu so that you can access your list of blocked contacts. Scroll down through your settings and click on “Phone”. Under “Phone”, you need to scroll down until you reach the “Blocked Contacts”.

Search through the list to see if you can find the number that you are trying to reach. It is all too easy to accidentally block a phone number on your iPhone. In some cases, it may be that you intentionally blocked a number a long time ago and simply forgot about it.

All that you need to do is click the edit icon in the top right corner and select the number that you wish to remove. Tap the red icon next to the number that you need to reach to remove it from your blocked icon list.

2. Check Parental Controls and Blocked Content

You may receive the “message blocking is active” notification if there are parental control or content blocking measures in place. Parents often block specific keywords for one reason or another to prevent inappropriate content from coming through. You may have the same number from when you were younger and those parental controls may still be in place even as an adult.

The recipient may have parental control settings in place that would prevent certain messages from coming through. In that case, you can try to send another text message with different content to see if the message still appears. If the message still appears, then it likely indicates that the recipient simply has your number blocked.

This message can appear due to specific words, images, and even audio that you send to another number. Unfortunately, there is nothing that you can do to resolve this problem if the message blocking occurs on the recipient’s end.

3. Check for Blocked Emails

Modern iPhones include a text-to-email feature that lets you text select emails via email. However, you will receive a “message blocking is active” notification if you blocked the recipient or they blocked you. Luckily, you can go through your phone’s settings to find out if their email address is blocked on your end.

Open your iPhone’s settings, scroll down to “Mail”, and click on it. Scroll down under the “Mail” section until you reach “Blocked”. Search through the list of blocked email addresses to see if the recipient is among them.

If so, you can tap the “Edit” icon in the upper right-hand corner to manage them. Locate the email address in question and tap the red icon to remove the address from the list. Send another message to the email address to see if the “message blocking is active” notification still appears. If so, that indicates that they blocked you and it is up to them to unblock your phone number or email address.

4. Reinsert Your SIM Card

Sometimes, the solution is as simple as removing your SIM card and reinserting it. Your SIM card, or subscriber identity module, is essentially responsible for how your phone functions. SIM cards are responsible for your iPhone’s connection to your cellular service provider, i.e. Verizon or AT&T.

They are impressive but imperfect just like any piece of technology. Because of this, you may need to reset your SIM card to reach certain numbers. There is no real way to reset your SIM card, but removing and reinserting it can sometimes provide the jumpstart that you need.

Unfortunately, you can only remove your iPhone’s SIM card if you have a SIM tool. The SIM tool works similarly to a screwdriver and lets you release the SIM card from its housing. Pop the SIM card out of its housing using a SIM tool. Wait 1-2 minutes and reinsert the SIM card.

Attempt to contact the number that you were unable to reach before. It indicates that you have the contact blocked or they have blocked you if you still receive a “message blocking is active” message.

5. Try Using SMS

One of the benefits of iPhones is that they let you communicate using both iMessage and SMS. However, you may not be able to reach someone via iMessage if either of you has an invalid Internet connection. Luckily, iPhones let you attempt to resend a message via SMS.

Go back to the message that you attempted to send on your phone’s home screen. Hover over the original message, tap it, and hold it until a prompt come up that says “send as text message”. Click it and see if it allows you to send the message via SMS instead of iMessage.

This will work if the problem was strictly due to a discrepancy between you and the recipient’s Internet connection. Sometimes, you may need to try this a few times if the recipient is in a location with poor service. Otherwise, it is a sign that you or the recipient have blocked one another’s numbers.

6. Check Which Country the Recipient is In

Sometimes, you may receive a “message blocking is active” message if they are in a country that can’t receive your texts. This often has more to do with your cell phone plan than with the country in which they are located. It can also happen if the recipient has a cell phone plan that won’t let them receive international texts.

In that case, you may have to attempt to contact them via another method. Try to email them to see if they receive your message. Either you or the recipient may have to alter their cell phone plan to effectively reach one another. This can be frustrating, but it may be necessary if either of your cellular plans won’t allow for international communication.

7. Try Another Method

Sometimes, there may just be a communication gap that you need to work out through other means of communication. This should be your last resort after you’ve already checked your list of blocked contacts and phone numbers. Send them an email if you have their email address to see if they have blocked you.

They may have simply blocked you on accident and a well-worded email can help clarify the situation. If you don’t hear back, then they may have blocked your email address as well. In that case, then maybe it wasn’t meant to be and you should take it as a sign that you should stop contacting them.

8. Contact Your Cellular Service Provider

Contact your cellular service provider if you are unable to reach a solution using the aforementioned methods. Your service provider should be able to help you get to the root of the problem. They will likely encourage you to check your list of blocked contacts.

Otherwise, it could be a more complicated matter and could come down to your cellular usage. For example, you may not be able to reach people via SMS text message if you have exceeded your monthly threshold. In that case, you may need to upgrade your service to an unlimited text plan to avoid this problem in the future.

You can also inquire to see if messaging problems are common in your area. Sometimes, the problem is as simple as poor cellular service in your area. This is common if you live in a rural area with limited cellular service towers.

9. Double Check the Phone Number

Double-check the phone number to make sure that you didn’t make a mistake on your end. Even a deviation of one digit will send a text message to someone else entirely. Make sure that the entire number including the area code is correct before you attempt to contact them again.

Someone may block you if you text the wrong person, and that is understandable. Make sure to get the area code and country code correct before you attempt to contact them again. Your message should go through if you get the phone number correct unless they have your phone number blocked. 

So, What’s the Best Solution When Your iPhone Says Message Blocking is Active?

The best solution when your iPhone says “message blocking is active” is to check your list of blocked contacts. Scroll through your settings, tap on “Phone”, and select “Blocked”. Search through the list to see if you find the number that you tried to reach.

Click on “Edit” and remove the blocked number that you are trying to reach. However, it may indicate that the recipient has blocked you if you are unable to find their number in the blocked list. You can also tap and hold the message that didn’t go through and click on “send as text message”.

This will let you send the message as an SMS text instead of an iMessage. Try to send another text with different contact if you receive a “message blocking is active” notification. This indicates that your initial text fell into the category of blocked content on the recipient’s end and you may have to send different content.