One of the nice things I have with my current iPhone is the ability to do a group message with other iPhone users in the Messaging app. An iPhone user starts a conversation with me and a few others (iPhone or not), and my replies go to everyone on the conversation.

But I've sent messages to multiple non-iPhone users, and they receive it as if I only sent it to them, so they don't know there's a group involved.

I'm considering getting a Nokia Lumia - with Windows Phone 8, will I be able to continue using group messages as I do now, where I can see that I'm involved in a group conversation? Or will it look as though it's just individual conversations? Or does it depend on carrier and/or phone model?


The ability to group message with others relies on MMS rather than SMS. By using MMS, phones involved in the conversation are able to keep track not just of the original sender but also about everyone else involved. This is true for Windows Phone and I am quite sure for all other platforms as well.

Like you mentioned in your question, when you have a group message conversation with other iPhone users, they are all able to see all the people involved in the conversation. I don't own an iPhone but this suggests that MMS Group Messaging may be turned on by default.

It is not turned on by default in Window Phone thought. To turn on this feature you need to go to Settings > Applications > Messaging and there you can switch it on. As mentioned, this does rely on all the recipients having this feature turned on as well or else it would appear to them as a one on one conversation.

As a side note: with an app like WhatsApp you will be able to achieve this no problem. Needless to say all your friends will have to have WhatsApp too!

  • Awesome, thanks for the info. I'll make sure I try that when I get the phone. FYI: with the iPhone, it might use MMS for some communication, but the iPhone-to-iPhone communication is special, doesn't use the carrier at all, just plain internet, with a fallback to text message if the internet fails. So it's more like an IM client with text-messaging capabilities. This is actually really nice if you don't have unlimited text, since these messages don't count against your limit.
    – Joe Enos
    Mar 31 '13 at 19:02
  • I see...sort of like BBM for BlackBerry users.
    – karancan
    Apr 1 '13 at 2:21
  • Just a comment for future users who have this same question: as of now (July 2013) Verizon Wireless (at least in the US) disables group messaging, even though the phone and OS allows it. See the accepted answer to my follow up question after I got the phone for a few links discussing it.
    – Joe Enos
    Jul 1 '13 at 15:18

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