iMessage Activation Via Phone Number Now Working on Wind Mobile in Canada

A growing number of Wind Mobile customers in Canada this week have confirmed to MacRumors and on social media that iMessage activation via phone number is now working properly on iPhone. iMessage on Wind Mobile previously only worked when activated using an Apple ID.

iMessage-Wind-Mobile
MacRumors reader Brandon and several other iPhone users confirmed the change.
Finally Wind Mobile in Canada is suddenly using native iMessage. You used to have to only use your Apple ID for iMessage and FaceTime because it was unsupported on Wind's network. Today, suddenly it started working. I have confirmed it with an Apple Genius, and I myself am a former Apple technician as well.
Apple released iOS 9.0.2 last week with a fix for an issue that prevented iMessage activation for some users, but it is more likely the change was made by Wind Mobile given that iPhones running previous software versions such as iOS 8.4 also now have iMessage activation by SMS.

Apple does not list Wind Mobile as a supported wireless carrier on its website. Canadian carriers that officially support the iPhone include the big three networks Bell, Rogers and Telus, prepaid carriers Fido, Koodo and Virgin Mobile and regional carriers Eastlink, MTS, SaskTel, TbayTel and Videotron.

Wind Mobile is a bargain carrier in Canada, offering affordable rate plans with unlimited talk, text and data for between $25 and $50 per month. Wind Mobile's coverage area is mainly limited to larger cities, however, such as the Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver metro areas.

(Thanks, Brandon!)



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50 months ago

Holy cow, about freaking time!! You used to be able to make this work with some kind of horrible hack that required you to dig through iTunes backups and pull out some hex strings and then paste them into a website which would then send the requisite SMS that for some stupid reason Wind would block. Anyways, it's good that now iPhone users won't have this problem if they decide to use Wind.

I wouldn't recommend Wind because their service coverage is generally spotty, SMSes are slow, and data speeds are very slow, but it's still about the cheapest way to get a lot of data and calling time in Canada. I wonder if they offer Nano SIMs yet or if you still have to cut regular sized ones down.

I would, and do, recommend Wind. It's great for those of us who don't need the cost of the major providers. The coverage is great for those in many major cities, and because of the CRTC ruling re: roaming rates it's often cheaper to have Wind as a provider but use nothing but roaming. I've never experienced slow SMS, but, yes, data can be slow. If one really needs LTE speed then Wind will not do, but I usually get from 4-10 Mbps which is fine for general web browsing, email, Siri, etc.

The "horrible hack", while certainly inconvenient, was simply copying a hex string from a log file (easily found and not from a backup). Also, it's not Wind that blocked it--the text is sent from Apple with a different encoding than a standard text (something about seven bits instead of eight) and that's what would trip up the system. Now, why Wind couldn't just flip a switch to accept the new format, well, that's a different complaint...

Lastly, yes, they've offered nano-SIM for a while; I signed up the day I got my iPhone 6 and couldn't be happier. Just remember: you get what you pay for.
Rating: 2 Votes
Avatar
50 months ago
Holy cow, about freaking time!! You used to be able to make this work with some kind of horrible hack that required you to dig through iTunes backups and pull out some hex strings and then paste them into a website which would then send the requisite SMS that for some stupid reason Wind would block. Anyways, it's good that now iPhone users won't have this problem if they decide to use Wind.

I wouldn't recommend Wind because their service coverage is generally spotty, SMSes are slow, and data speeds are very slow, but it's still about the cheapest way to get a lot of data and calling time in Canada. I wonder if they offer Nano SIMs yet or if you still have to cut regular sized ones down.
Rating: 2 Votes
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50 months ago
Small correction: WIND doesn't have coverage in Montreal (only roaming).
Rating: 1 Votes
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50 months ago

Small correction: WIND doesn't have coverage in Montreal (only roaming).

Thank you, kind sir! I swapped out Montreal with Ottawa.
Rating: 1 Votes
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50 months ago
I freaking love WIND! Unlimited data options are quite limited here in Canada, and if you rarely leave the city (like me) then the "spotty" coverage isn't an issue at all. Plus getting unlimited calling across Canada AND the USA for only $39 (included with the unlimited data) is pretty hard to beat. Yes they won't get LTE till next year. 3G is still fast enough to watch Netflix, stream Apple Music (or other radio apps), and practically anything else!!
Rating: 1 Votes
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