Last week a friend of ours was having trouble with her iPhone. She couldn’t text another friend. It was just this one particular friend, so it didn’t all make sense. She had at one time been able to text this friend, but picture messages never worked. Once she restored her iPhone and put it under her own account, installed iOS 5 and the rest of the great stuff you do when starting from scratch, text messages to this particular friend stopped working completely.
She could call her, but she could not send any sort of text to her friend. The error message was something like this:
“Error: Invalid Number. Please re-send using a valid 10-digit mobile number or valid short code.”
She immediately thought “It needs an area code.” She checked the number, everything was there, all 10 digits. She just figured her iPhone didn’t like her.
On a whim, (before I had seen the error message for myself) I suggested just erasing and re-adding the contact. Figuring something may have been amiss. It worked. Next thing I know I receive a text saying “Jay, you’re a genius! It worked!” (Aww, shucks).
So, the story here is that even though the number in the contacts list appeared to have an area code and everything required to send a text message, it wasn’t working. She later said she wished she had thought to just re-enter the number, but sometimes the simplest solutions never occur to us, especially when we are dealing with the frustration of not being able to get something to do what we need it to. Sometimes you need to step back and look at the situation from the outside. Otherwise, you let those little annoyances and frustration impair good judgement.