Messaging apps

You can use any one of many messaging apps on an Android phone. Sometimes these alternative apps store messages in a way that is not compatible with the ordinary messaging app, so Text Collector is unable to retrieve messages for printing.

If you’re using WhatsApp, you probably know you’re using it, as opposed to ordinary text messages. WhatsApp messages and the like will not appear in Text Collector collections.

Unfortunately, the reasons aren’t always quite so obvious: cell carriers like to provide their own messaging systems with different features. These are usually branded “Advanced,” “Chat,” “Messages+,” or “RCS.” Typically, the phone manufacturers build the support for carrier-specific messaging into the stock messaging app. Usually, you can tell this is happening if you see something like “so-and-so is typing” while somebody on the other end writes a message.

Summary of known problems

If you notice messages missing, or any other problem with your collection, please write to help@legaltextcollector.com.

  • Samsung

    • On some phones, draft messages may not appear.
    • Spam messages do not appear
    • Some messages might be duplicated
    • Some pictures might not appear
  • LG

    • Location messages on do not render as maps
    • Prior to Text Collector version 1.2, messages with people on the same carrier can be missing
  • Alcatel

    • Prior to Text Collector version 1.4, messages with people on the same carrier can be missing
  • HTC

    • Messages with people on the same carrier can be missing
  • Verizon Messages+

  • Xiaomi

Samsung

Some Samsung customizations are not specific to any particular carrier’s “Advanced” messaging and affect all types of messages on all carriers, when using Samsung phones:

  • On Samsung phones, draft messages might not appear in the collection
  • Spam messages do not appear

On AT&T and T-Mobile (including Metro PCS), Samsung phones use the carrier’s “Advanced” messaging. Text Collector can usually collect these messages, but there are occasional problems. Usually these only affect messages with other customers on the same carrier:

  • Some messages that appear once in the messaging app may appear twice in the collection
  • Some pictures might not appear

Some message types have not been decoded; Text Collector will label them [Unknown message status] if it encounters them. If you see this, please write to help@legaltextcollector.com.

LG

On AT&T and T-Mobile (including Metro PCS), LG phones use the carrier’s “Advanced” messaging. Starting with version 1.2, Text Collector can usually collect these messages, but there are occasional problems. Usually these only affect messages with other customers on the same carrier.

LG phones can share location that appears as a map in the messaging app. Text Collector does not render the map of these location messages, but the underlying location data will be saved as an attachment.

Some message types have not been decoded; Text Collector will abort collections if it encounters them. If your collection fails, please write to help@legaltextcollector.com.

Motorola

On T-Mobile (including Metro PCS), Motorola phones use the carrier’s “Advanced” messaging. Motorola phones store these messages in the same way as ordinary text messages, so they cause no known problems.

Alcatel

On T-Mobile (including Metro PCS), Alcatel phones use the carrier’s “Advanced” messaging. Starting with version 1.4, Text Collector can collect these messages. This might be the same on other carriers, but has not been tested.

HTC

On T-Mobile (including Metro PCS), HTC phones use the carrier’s “Advanced” messaging. Text Collector currently cannot collect these messages, so messages with other T-Mobile customers can be missing from the collection. This might affect other carriers, but has not been tested.

Verizon Messages+

Verizon sets up its phones with its own Messages+ app as the default app for texting. Messages+ looks a bit more red than the stock messaging app:

Verizon Messages+ app screenshot

Text Collector can access most messages that appear in the Verizon Messages app, but sometimes not. Usually, this applies only messages and with other Verizon customers.

If you find messages are missing, some workarounds have been successful in some cases:

  • Print messages from the Verizon Web interface. When viewing a thread, the “print” button can be found in the toolbar.
  • Use the built-in backup option and open the backup files with the online Verizon Messages+ Viewer.
  • Reset the Messages+ app customizations. This option is available in the top-right (three-dot) menu from the Messages+ app, under “customize.” Then make a new collection with Text Collector.

If you have information on this problem, please contact help@legaltextcollector.com.

Xiaomi

On Xiaomi phones, selected contacts may be “blocked.” Messages from blocked contacts generally don’t appear in Text Collector collections. To ensure that all messages appear, unblock numbers from the Contacts app.