Can't turn on chat features

If your device and carrier network support chat features and if you’re having problems turning chat features on, try the following steps:

  1. Check your Chat Features status: Open the Messages app. Tap More Moreand thenSettings and then Chat features. Check the chat features status. If you’re not connected, tap Retry.
    Important: All people in a conversation (1-1 or group) must have chat features turned on.
  2. Check your data connection: Make sure your Android phone or tablet is connected to the internet and can receive SMS.
  3. Check the Messages app version: Make sure you and the person you’re chatting with have the latest Messages app version.
  4. Check your default messaging app: Make sure that Messages is your device’s default app for SMS.
  5. Check your SIM: If you’re using a multi-SIM card devices, make sure the same SIM card is enabled for both Call and data.
  6. Check your Android version: Chat features only work if you’re on Android 5.0 or higher. Learn how to check your Android version.
  7. Change the phone number associated with the Messages app: Open the Messages app. Tap More More and then Settings and then Advanced. Select Phone number, then edit the number to the correct phone number associated with your SIM card. Tap OK.
  8. Check your Google Fi default:
    • If you're a Fi user, open Hangouts Hangouts. Tap Menu and then Settings. Under "Account," tap your Google Account. Under “Google Fi calls and SMS," next to "Messages," make sure the switch is in the OFF position.
    • Turn off Fi message sync in Messages. Tap More More and then Settings and then Advanced and then Google Fi Settings. If you no longer have access to the phone with this setup, sign in on the new device to stop sync on the previous device. Learn how to sync your messages.
  9. (Optional) Check the Carrier Services app version: Most devices come with Carrier Services app pre-installed. If it’s pre-installed, make sure you have the latest Carrier Services app version.

Try other ways to fix the issue

If you’re still not able to turn chat features on, clear the application storage for Carrier Services and Messages.

Step 1: Clear Carrier Services

If you don’t have Carrier Services on your phone, follow the instructions below to clear the Messages app.

To clear Carrier Services:

  1. On your Android phone or tablet, turn on Airplane mode.
  2. Go to Settings.
  3. Tap Apps & notifications and then See all apps and then Show system and then Carrier Services.
  4. Tap Storage and then Clear Storage.
  5. Force quit then restart the Carrier Services app.
    • Go to Settings. Tap Apps & notifications and then Carrier Services and then Force Stop.

Step 2: Clear the Messages app


  • If you clear the Messages app, you won't lose your messages, but you'll lose all Messages settings.
  • Some of your Rich Communication Services (RCS) messages will be marked "MMS," and you might have problems with RCS groups until you get RCS back.
  • You may not immediately be able to use group chats after re-enabling RCS unless someone else in the group chat can initiate a conversation.

To clear the Messages app:

  1. On your Android phone or tablet, go to Settings.
  2. Tap Apps & notifications and then Messages.
  3. Tap Storage and then Clear Storage.
  4. Force quit then restart the Android Messages app.
    • Go to Settings and then Apps & notifications and then Messages and then Force Stop.
  5. Turn off Airplane mode.
  6. After a few minutes, check your chat features status to see if you’re connected.

Learn more about chat features.

Need more help?

If none of the above solve the issue, you can view Chat features by Google FAQ or ask questions in the Messages Community.

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