Receiving multiple times the same text or MMS

Hi all !

I have a new FP3+ bought with /e/ on it directly. Nothing to complain ; as I wanted to have a phone!

But I recently got some problems / malfunctions with the default text app : sometimes, when I receive a text or MMS, I continue to receive the same exact message the following days at the same exact time it was originally sent by my contact. Sometimes it stop for a day or two and then, I receive it again. I asked and none if them programmed (even by mistake) a text. They even checked with their operators and it was sent only once.

I assume then the problem is coming from my device or maybe even my operator. As far as I checked, I don’t see any settings that may resolve my problem. It started before the last update and continues with the new one. I’m a bit lost now and this is where I hope the community may help me with my problem !

I’d recommend to try out a different SMS (e.g. Silence app) to check if problem also happens in this case and to also contact your own provider to let them check.

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I made a case for that a long time ago. Since than almost nothing happened. Indeed it’s rather complicated to reproduce this problem until you have it by accident.

I have to admit that, originally, it did not wanted to add any other basic apps (like for the camera, even if the chosen one is definitively not my prefered one). But you’re right, it might be part of the solution if it comes from the messaging app. Thank for the app advice (Silence). To understand it correctly, after I installed it, I go through this app (and not anymore the original one) and all text / MMS will then be inside this one and not in double with the previous one ?

I went through your log and we do really experience the same trouble. I will try your suggestion to hardly close the message app and look what happened in the following days. We have the same network provider (Swisscom - Switzerland) but I don’t know it can really come from them as before I wasn’t experiencing this.

Thanks both for taking the time to reply ! I’m “happy” to see that I’m not the only one experiencing this and hope a solution will pop-up somehow.

You could add some of your experiences there in the case, if you want. This would be good because we had about two or three OS updates since then and the problem seems still to be there.

Don’t think so. I never had an issue with the provider since 2003. If the provider is involved many people with many devices and different OS would have it. I think it’s rather on the device and its OS.

I use Signal now, also for simple, unencrypted SMS and MMS, and didn’t have this problem since then.

Ok then I will had a few word about it. That’s a good idea !

That’s what I wanted to say but maybe not what I wrote.

By that, do you mean the stock messaging app send encrypted data where the Signal doesn’t do it ? Nice to know your problem disappears by changing the messaging app, even if it is sadly only bypassing the problem and not solving it.

No no, SMS is always unencrypted. The stock app is a fork of QKSMS and definitely unencrypted. It sends ordinary plain text messages and MMS.

Signal sends encrypted messages to other Signal users but ordinary unencrypted SMS when the receiver doesn’t use Signal. So Signal fullfills two tasks: messenger and simple SMS app. You can see it when you type.

Go it !

I already use Signal (and Threema) as a Whatsapp alternative (I quite them when moving to /e/) but not every contact use it.

Now my question is the following, if I understand correctly what you said. If I go to : Apps and notification → Default Applications → Messaging application → change from the “stock one” to “Signal” ;

Then, I use only Signal for texting. And Signal will by itself send SMS or MMS to my contact depending on what they have installed on their device, but it will be transparent for me as everything will be via Signal ? Does it means all my contact will then appears inside the Signal app even if the don’t have it install ?

Thanks a lot for taking the time to reply to all of my messages !

Good idea …

Yes. When you try to start a conversation using Signal you must select a receiver. After you did this the message editor opens, there in the input line you see if the message will be encrypted (because the receiver supports this) or not. Very transparent. I like the idea that I need only one app, one UI.

The only practical “disadvantage” in the use of Signal is: it’s a bit cumbersome, starting it takes several seconds. If you have a lot of SMS a day you better let it open.

I barely never close the app by swipping them so I thing this is what you means.

I have one additional question to clarify, even if I thing I got the answer already, but as you use it this way, you will easily anwser: by doing it this way via Signal as default messaing app, I will receive the text / image in the Signal app as well and not on the other stock app right ? And again, the “encryptation status” will be shown to notify me whenever the conversation is encrypted or not ?

Yes. You will have the stock app installed but it doesn’t even run.

BTW: this is not at all unusual with many of the preinstalled apps (Mail, Calendar, Launcher, Gallery, …)

You see the encryption status (depending on the receiver) when you write a text message. You must know that to protect yourself and the receiver. - A received message can in the UI of Signal not be recognized anymore as SMS or encrypted Signal message by you, you have only messages. The responsibility is on the sender’s side.

Nice to know thanks!

I knew I will be lost at one point by more skilled people and this is what happened. But if you tell me that it will never be worst, safety wise, than using both Signal and Stock messaging app as now, its fine for me !

No need to be lost. What you must know is:

  • Signal can send and receive encrypted or unencrypted,
  • “encrypted” needs another Signal instance on the other side,
  • “unencrypted” means ordinary, simple SMS (or MMS),
  • which technique will be used depends on the receiver, Signal detects this,
  • you will see it when you want to write to someone, so it’s always transparent and you can decide.

Thanks for all the time taken thinking and answering to my original and following question. I hope those malfunctions will stop by moving to Signal.

For me the case is solved thank you!

You also have the option of compartmentalizing like this:

.Use Signal for encrypted messaging only

.Use a second messaging app (like Silence, which is based on Signal’s code) for unencrypted messaging

In this case, when you install Signal, tell it to not handle SMS/MMS for you. Then only Signal-to-Signal encrypted messaging will happen in that app.

Why might you want to do this? Some people might forget when they’re sending/receiving in an unencrypted state, causing a security lapse for them. (Though Signal makes it fairly obvious for you.)

P.S. If you insert a different SIM from your usual SIM, for instance when you’re traveling overseas, Signal will not be handling SMS/MMS for your regular number, only the current number (based on the SIM you’re using). I point this out just in case there’s confusion about whether regular SMS/MMS are traveling over the cellular network or the internet. They travel over cellular, whereas encrypted messaging goes over the data connection, as I understand it. I’ve previously asked Signal about this, to find out if I would receive 2FA messages sent from my bank to my regular number while using Signal with a different SIM. (I would not.)

Hi all!

First feedback after moving the default SMS and MMS into the Signal app, instead of the stock one : I received the same SMS and MMS as before, at the same exact time it was originally sent.

So, this solution seems not working for me problem. Do you think it can really come from the network provider ?

@irrlicht did the problem solved in your case by moving to the Signal app?

@Taurus thanks for your reply. I got your point regarding the possible lack of security by having both unencrypted and encrypted messages in the same text app. Do you think the result would be different, regarding receiving multiple times the same text, by using Simple instead of Signal?

I doubt it would behave differently. This sounds more like a network problem to me. I would tell your provider what’s happening and see if they can provide insight.

Yeap I will see what I can do with them tomorrow. It sounds like the problem is going to take a while to be solved…

First time I try a forum ever and it’s nice being able to exchange with others and see more options / solutions / ideas with more skilled people!

Are you able to try your SIM in a different phone and see if it happens again? Maybe the provider’s tower is stuck in a loop.

What does it means ?

Yes, I can put the SIM card back in my previous FP2 and look for it. I will try it tomorrow to see if it changes something. Might be of help for the provider as well.