I just bought my new Samsung Galaxy S5. When texting, when I exceed 160 characters it automatically converts to MMS. I have researched the remedy,gone to settings and clicked the MMS Alert to 'on' which alerts me when I have exceeded the maximum amount of characters, but it still converts to MMS. How can I revise the amount of maximum characters so I won't need to use my data? I certainly don't want to have to send multiple texts every time I text over the 160 limit.

  • Use WhatsApp or hangouts or similar – warsong Dec 25 '14 at 23:23
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    I find it a bit strange that it got converted to MMS. Usually, when the SMS exceeds the size limit, it will be continued as concatenated SMS, sent as multiple SMSes, but not MMS. I don't know if this case is specific to Samsung only or not. – Andrew T. Dec 26 '14 at 8:21

There is no way to increase the number of characters you can send via SMS. SMS (Short Message Service) is a fixed standard that is currently defined as a way of sending messages up to 1120 bits in length. This means 160 7-bit characters or 140 8-bit characters or 70 16-bit characters. More here http://www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Short_Message_Service

  • That's technically correct, but a protocol to split and reassemble larger messages has been around for many years and is supported by almost every phone since the early 2000s. – lxgr Dec 26 '14 at 11:53
  • @lxgr while your comment is technically also correct, the protocol is dependant upon the sending device, the receiving device, and the service provider. So a user would have no control over this as they wouldn't have control of the receiver, nor the service provider. – Ryan Conrad Dec 28 '14 at 5:21
  • man, this is the classic problem , if we wrote in 7-bit characters we got 160 characters , on first type of an non-ascii character , you will have 70 characters per sms . – Sérgio Oct 30 '16 at 18:51

I had the same issue with my Samsung Galaxy S4. When I exceed 160 characters, it automatically converts the message type to MMS. I installed Google messenger app to solve this issue.

  • good solution google messenger doesn't convert 3 sms to mms ! – Sérgio Oct 30 '16 at 18:49

I found that using a 3rd party messaging app would solve the problem! But then, the functions of the built-in Samsung Messages app would be gone. Such as the swipe to call and also my favourite feature, the quick contacts.


i think you are using s5 prime. With 160 sms limit.there's no way to increase it. But if you root your s5 prime to s5 It can be solve.

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    Could you expand your answer by explaining how to achieve that if the device is rooted? As of current, it's not so helpful, since (I believe) rooting doesn't automatically remove 160-character limitation on SMS. And what do you mean rooting from S5 Prime to S5? – Andrew T. Apr 12 '15 at 12:19
  • Also, what has the device name to do with the 160 byte limit of SMS? As that's a limit in the SMS service itself, how should rooting be able to fix that? It's simply not possible to put more than 160 bytes in a single SMS, as the protocol is setup such. – Izzy Apr 13 '15 at 11:10

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