- Kaspars Grinvalds/Shutterstock
- Several smartphone users in the United States received text messages early Thursday that the sender said they never sent or sent months ago.
- Sprint said the issue was the result of a maintenance update that occurred overnight and caused old messages to be resent for some customers.
- Many of the texts appeared to have originally been sent on February 14, Valentine’s Day.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
On Thursday morning, I woke up to a text message from a close friend asking if I had any plans tomorrow night. That usually wouldn’t seem out of the ordinary, but there were two reasons it struck me as odd: The message was sent around 4 a.m., and my friend had no recollection of sending it, because she originally sent it on Valentine’s Day.
As it turns out, I’m not alone. There were dozens of tweets on Thursday from people who experienced a similar phenomenon. Some people said friends or family members received text messages from them in the middle of the night that they never sent. Others had received old text messages from Valentine’s Day.
A Sprint representative told Business Insider the issue was the result of a maintenance update that occurred overnight and affected the messaging platforms of multiple carriers. The update caused some users to have old messages resent to their devices, and the problem was resolved quickly.
T-Mobile also said the issue was the result of a “third-party vendor issue” that affected multiple networks, adding that the problem had been resolved.
Jill just asked me about some text messages that I apparently sent her at 4:30am. The problem is that my ass was sleep and these messages are no where to be found on my phone! pic.twitter.com/xpLAHPKgBv
— Jen Davis (@hypeman_jen) November 7, 2019
My friend recieved a text from me at 5am, that I did not send. We both had screen shots, and his clearly shows a text from me saying "I sent you an email", and mine doesn't. I have galaxy/verizon, he has iphone/tmobile.
— Matthew Hagan ???????? (@mjhagan75) November 7, 2019
— K-Lo (@imKLo) November 7, 2019
As Sprint and T-Mobile said, the issue seemed to affect people with various carriers, regardless of whether they were using iOS or Android devices. It certainly resulted in some confusion, especially considering some of those texts were Valentine’s Day-themed.
Oh hi! ????????♀️ Well now I got my reminder who I was dating this past Valentine’s Day. What a bizarre thing this is!! https://t.co/8FDwF9UXHo
— Leslie Liberty (@hotskillet) November 7, 2019
Yep…yep…lol this is a thing that happened. Seriously, her not getting that message ruined our Valentine's. But it's all good now! Floated around in the phone ether until JUST NOW ????
— Prophet ???? PAX SOUTH! (@PropheticDr34ms) November 7, 2019
It’s not the first time people have reported issues involving old messages being resent. Questions describing similar incidents can be found in carrier forums, with some queries dating back to 2011. But those complaints have usually referred to isolated incidents; a widespread problem like this seems rare.
Representatives for Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for additional information.