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Charges for texts not made

I'm a participant level 1
I'm a participant level 1

Community Feedback Zone


Constantly getting charges for texts not sent; usually says I sent to the U.S. except I didnt.  It seems to happen whenever I send texts to Australia.  Fido usually resist reversing the charge, insists that I sent them.  The first several times I paid b/c they were not huge amounts but now its become a matter of principle.  Anyone has any ideas why this happens?  Also charges me for multiple mgs when I've only sent one.




Senior MVP Senior MVP
Senior MVP

Hello Mef,


  Welcome to the community!


  I'm not entirely sure why it's showing you sent text messages to the US after you've sent messages to Australia. However, it could be related to the other observation you noted.


@Mef wrote:..Also charges me for multiple mgs when I've only sent one....

  What you're describing happens because of the nature of SMS. The SMS or texting protocol is strictly limited to 140 bytes. Generally, that often translates to 140 characters. However, the characters of some languages (such as Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, or Cyrillic alphabet languages (ie Russian, Ukrainian, Serbian, Bulgarian, etc)) contain more bits -- or information -- per character thereby reducing the number of allowable characters per SMS to 70. Similarly, the use of emojis will also limit the number of characters to 70 per SMS.


  Most modern devices allow for longer, multi-part or segmented SMS. What you compose as a single message, is broken up into smaller individual SMSs. For technical reasons, the number of characters allowable in each segment is slightly less than what is allowable for a single SMS. However, the exact number of allowed characters is not important for this discussion. If you're interested in the details, you can search for the nitty-gritty yourself.


  Once your message exceeds a certain character count, it will automatically convert to a multi-part SMS. Each segment of a long SMS is sent and billed separately as equivalent to individual messages. In fact, if you send a long SMS to someone with an older phone, they will receive multiple individual texts. It is only the more modern devices which are capable of reintegrating the segments into a single message (see here) Since each segment is sent at the same time, it appears as though you're getting charged multiple times for the same text. However, the charges are actually for each individual portion of the message.


  Depending on the settings on your phone, some will convert long-SMS (messages exceeding the 160 character limit) to MMS automatically. The messages are showing up on the Fido system as multiple segments sent because your phone is sending them as such. Each device handles SMS/MMS differently. Your best option is to go through the settings on your phone. 


  Many people do not realise that how text messages (ie how many or as MMS) are sent is determined by our phones and that information is usually provided even before we press send. The mobile providers merely relay what our phones send. See here for an example of how a phone might provide character length remaining and number of SMS.


  If those SMS to the US occur at the same time as the message sent to Australia, it's possible that the sent from number information has been mis-read during the concatenation process for the subsequent portions of your long-SMS. Does the US phone number look similar to the Australian phone number?


Hope this helps 😀