11 Replies Latest reply: Jan 26, 2014 9:42 AM by willywonty
eferrell Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Today I went to send a text message to someone and as I was selecting the person from my contact list I noticed that one 1 of my contacts had a tiny blue speech bubble next to his name. I know that the blue speech bubbles when texting mean that you are using iMessage, but I don't know why this little icon appeared next to this contact's name. And why it would show up only next to his name and not next to any others' who have iMessage enabled. Any ideas what this symbol means?

iPhone 4S, iOS 5.0.1, text messaging, iMessage
  • Ingo2711 Level 6 Level 6 (17,815 points)

    The only other blue icon mentioned I found in the iphone_user_guide 5 is this one:

    Bildschirmfoto 2012-01-29 um 20.42.33.png

  • scole01 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    It means that contact is using iMessage. But I have the same issue where people I know are using iMessage do not have the icon...

  • Wigmeister Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I think that I finally figured it out.  The "speech bubble" appears when you have sent a recent imessage. I'm not sure of the actual time frame, but it could be within a 24 hour period because I went back to imessages from today and yesterday. The contacts where I sent an imessage in the morning didn't have a speech bubble, but those in the afternoon did.


    I then checked my contacts and found one where I knew that they had an iPhone. There was no speech bubble, so I sent an imessage and then it appeared (she has a iPhone 4 and I have a 4s, so it doesn't matter the version).


    Mystery solved, I think!

  • missbrown Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I was wondering same thing. And I couldn't find a suitable answer on the Internet. So after reading I played around with it.


    Here's the answer: the tiny blue speech bubble appears if two conditions are met. First condition, the person has an iPhone and their iMessage capabilities are set up. And the second condition, the blue speech bubble appears, if YOU the texter, never officially terminated (stopped the message app from running in the background) the message app in that texting session.


    How I tested this was to text myself. When I texted myself & went to start a new message (w myself) the tiny bubble appeared. So I erased the message. And started again, the same thing happened, tiny blue speech bubble was there.  However when I terminated the app completely and then begin to once again send myself a message, the tiny blue speech bubble next to my name was GONE.

  • nofogirl Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    so what if the app is still running? what is the impact of that? does it mean that my message stream is still visible to the other person even though i have ended it from my side? not sure if i should be concerned about the app still running.


    p.s. how do i actually terminate the app?

  • Jon in San Rafael Level 1 Level 1 (65 points)

    The little blue speech bubble became apparent to me after I was interrupted while typing a text message with a second text message. After responding to the second message, my original text was gone. Then, when I searched for the persons name to begin again, I noticed their name had a small blue speech bubble next to it, as if iMessage was trying to tell me there was a draft, or unsent message, waiting. I was unable to recover the original message, however, and had to start again. I restarted iMessage just to see what would happen and the bubble went away.


    I'm wondering if iMessage keeps drafts somewhere, and if so, how to recover them.

  • lisamckelvie Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I always though it was the contacts who s till had your iMessage open in text messages. Not 100 % sure

  • SGL11 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I think Lisa McKelvie is correct. The person in your contact list still has your message history up on their phone. If they erase your previous message to them, the bubble will disappear.

  • Jason-K Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I realise this thread is a few months old now, but I'm pretty sure it simply means that the contacts with the speech bubble next to them are set up to use – and available to receive – iMessages.


    Why Apple make it so hard to find these things out, I'll never know

  • willywonty Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I've read a lot of conflicting info re that tiny empty blue text bubble icon next to a contact - including the contributions above. My wife has a Blackberry (so no iMessage) and my son a Samsung/Android (so no iMessage), but both have the empty blue text bubble icon next to the telephone icon in their contact information in my iPhone. So the bubble has nothing to do with iMessage.


    I thought maybe it indicated that I had sent a text message to a contact at some point in the past, but I have contacts to whom I sent text messages who don't have the text bubble icon.


    I thought maybe it indicated that my correspondent had kept our past conversations on their phone, but I've run experiments deleting those conversations, and the icon remains. I thought it might indicate that I had kept our past conversations on my phone, but no.


    Does no one have the definitive answer?

  • willywonty Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Definitive answer: it simply means that iPhone reckons the corresponding number is capable of accepting text messages (either SMS or iMessage). It's as simple as that.