Text Messaging FAQs

  1. 1) What is Text Messaging?

    Text Messaging enables you to send, receive and reply to short text messages from your digital phone to most other digital wireless phone users. You can either purchase an unlimited messaging package or send messages for just 25¢ each.

  2. 2) What are the benefits of Text Messaging?

    Discreet: A message is not intrusive, and you can use it when it is better to text.
    Convenient: You can message any U.S. Cellular subscriber, as well as many wireless carriers.
    Cost effective: Incoming messages are always free, and you can send messages for less than 25¢ per message, depending on your Text Messaging plan. Text Messaging does not affect the minutes of your current voice pricing plan.

  3. 3) What is a PIN and why do I need one?

    A PIN is a six digit number that you'll need when registering for U.S. Cellular 's online account management service. This will be sent to you via text message after completing the first step in the registration process. We do this to protect your account from being accessed without your knowledge.

  4. 4) How do I remove Text Messaging from my account?

    To remove Text Messaging at anytime, contact Customer Care at 611 from your wireless phone, or 1-888-944-9400 from your landline phone or write to us.

  5. 5) What are the benefits of having an e-mail address for my wireless phone?

    Having an e-mail address for your wireless phone enables you to receive text messages from e-mail, send messages to an e-mail address and reply directly to them from your U.S. Cellular phone. Your 10-digit wireless phone number followed by "" is your U.S. Cellular wireless e-mail address, so it's easy to remember.

  6. 6) What are the available Text Messaging Plans?

    Check out our Text Messaging Page for detailed information on all of our available plans.

    For text-only service plans designed to meet the needs of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, please visit our text-only plans page.

  7. 7) Is Text Messaging available in all U.S. Cellular markets?

    Text Messaging is available to all U.S. Cellular digital customers, and in various Prepaid Wireless areas.

  8. 8) To whom can I send a message?

    U.S. Cellular customers, as well as customers using wireless carriers who support text messaging.

    Please note: You may be able to send messages, but the recipient may not have a text messaging capable phone.

  9. 9) Where does Text Messaging work?

    To send and receive a text message, you MUST be within a coverage area that a) has the same digital technology as your home coverage area and b) is on the U.S. Cellular network or c) on one of our inter-carrier partners.

  10. 10) What is the maximum length of a text message?

    From wireless phone to wireless phone:

    Each text message is limited to 150 characters, including spaces and punctuation. If a message is longer than 150 characters, the remainder will be lost, resulting in incomplete messages being received. Note: Some handsets may have a smaller character limit.

    From the U.S. Cellular Web site to a wireless phone:

    Each text message is limited to 150 characters. This is for the message only and does not include the 'To' and 'From' fields.

    Using an e-mail address from the wireless phone:

    There is a maximum 120-character limit when sending a text message to an e-mail address from your wireless phone. Characters in the 'To', 'From', and 'Subject' fields count towards the 120-character limit.

    Using a text messaging e-mail address from any computer to wireless phone:

    E-mail messages sent from any computer to your wireless phone can be a maximum of 400-characters, but will be split into separate messages of up to 120-characters each.

  11. 11) How do I receive notification that a message has been sent to me?

    The method of notification varies depending on your specific phone model. Most phones offer both visual and audible notification. Please consult your manual for details or view our phone directory to view phone manuals online.

  12. 12) What number format should I use to send a message?

    You MUST use the full 10-digit number in order for the message to be sent. If the 7 or 11 digit number is used, the message will not be sent (e.g. 414 555 1234). The phone may not indicate that the message has NOT been sent.

  13. 13) What happens if I am on the phone or have my phone turned off when a message arrives?

    Your phone must be turned on in order to receive messages and for the audible and visual notifications to function. If you are on the phone, the message will be delivered once you end the call. You must also be in the digital portion of your home service area.

  14. 14) Will my phone automatically save the messages I send and receive?

    Once delivered to your phone, the messages are stored within the phone. However, if you do not delete the old messages and your phone's memory becomes full, new messages will not be delivered until you delete old messages. Messages you send are also stored by the phone, using memory, until you delete them. Please check your user manual for more details.

  15. 15) How many messages does my phone hold?

    This varies depending on your specific phone model. Refer to your user manual for details.

  16. 16) After I send an Internet message, will I receive confirmation that the message has been received?

    Unfortunately, we cannot provide confirmation of message receipt.

  17. 17) Can my phone receive e-mail messages?

    Yes, all text messaging customers can receive e-mail sent to your 10-digit wireless phone number followed by (i.e. which is your e-mail address. When you want to send a text message to an e-mail address, simply enter the recipient's e-mail address in the 'To' field. Outgoing messages and replies are charged as text messages. All incoming messages are free and unlimited. Learn about our different e-mail options.

  18. 18) Where can I get more information on my handset?

    Refer to the manual that came with your wireless phone at the time of purchase.

  19. 19) Can I set my phone to receive text messages but not incoming calls?

    Some phones allow you to set a "message mode" or "pager mode," which means it will not ring but will still alert you when a text message is received. Refer to your user manual for details.