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Cannot download photo texts - is this possible without a data plan?


I have had a Samsung Galaxy Ace (gt-s5830) for about a year, and I have never been able to successfully download photo texts using the standard Android messaging client. I always receive a message that says "downloading", but the photo never materializes, even when I have a wi-fi connection. I don't have a data plan with my Koodo package, nor do I really want one. On my older phones, photos could come in via text without needing a data plan. Is this still possible, or am I out of luck? If I modify my settings in some way, will I unwittingly get charged for data usage? I'd rather not receive photos than have a surprise data charge on my next bill. I have found other questions on this subject helpful, but most involve some kind of data plan. I'm more interested to know if it's possible to receive photos WITHOUT having a data plan, and without per-use charges appearing from other apps without my knowledge.

8 replies

Userlevel 2
You need to enable the mobile data to send/receive pictures. It won't work over wifi. You don't need to have a data plan for picture messaging to work. Any applications that you have running will use the mobile data, so it's recommended to have both wifi & mobile data turned on to avoid the data charges coming from these applications. There is no way around this either, because that is how the HSPA network was built.
Userlevel 7
Your galaxy ace doesn't need a data PLAN but it does need data to be ON and accessible to get a picture message. Your old phone may have been and older type of phone which didn't need that access, modern hspa devices do.
Thanks for the quick replies, gents. You've raised a further question for me: if I activate mobile data, do apps immediately and automatically begin to use it? Would I be better off to get a limited data plan, and can I prevent apps from using it up except when I have a wi-fi connection? I must admit that the distinction between data and wi-fi confuses me - particularly in terms of how a mobile device and its applications might transition back and forth between them.
Userlevel 2
Mobile Data = internet use through a cellular provider. Wifi = internet use through an Internet Service Provider. Once there's an active data connection(mobile or wifi), any apps that require an update will either start the download automatically(this depends on what you have set up in terms of updating the apps). If everything is done on wifi, then you won't need to worry about any mobile data usage. As long as you have wifi on while you have mobile data on, you should not get any data charges as most(if not all) applications will use the wifi signal over the mobile data signal.
Userlevel 7
Myke wrote:

Mobile Data = internet use through a cellular provider. Wifi = internet use through an Interne...

Thank you MykeC for saving me all that typing just as I was about to tap 'comment'
Userlevel 2
Myke wrote:

Mobile Data = internet use through a cellular provider. Wifi = internet use through an Interne...

Anytime Chad 🙂
Userlevel 7
Badge +4
This may help. It's my favourite thread. Chad described a fix for this prefectly and Timo noted which devices it works for. http://community.koodomobile.com/koodo/topics/change_apn_to_disable_internet_while_enabling_mms_on_samsung_ace_2
Userlevel 2
Dennis wrote:

This may help. It's my favourite thread. Chad described a fix for this prefectly and Timo not...

Even with this, it's not 100%. It may or may not work. If it does work, then you can celebrate 🙂.

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