iRealSMS has potential… if only it didn’t mess up my iPhone

A new application called iRealSMS 2.0 is available since this morning in Cydia. Earlier this week I had reviewed mySMS and was really impressed with it so I decided to give a try to iRealSMS too. Looking at some of the features available, I was already salivating over iRealSMS…

  • FULL app in Landscape Mode
  • Your SMS messages organized in folders: Inbox, Drafts, Templates, Outbox, Sent
  • Saving messages as drafts or templates
  • Search messages by sender’s name and text
  • Reply, forward and delete individual messages
  • Delete all messages or delete per folder
  • Big text field – both for reading and writing SMS
  • Turn on/off keyboard autoCorrection and autoCapitalization
  • Automatically request sent notification via notification code
  • SMS alerts can be deactivated -> no “new SMS” alerts
  • Adding contact details to SMS

I hurried to install iRealSMS on my iPhone and finally launched the app. Right away I was welcome with a “this is a demo verion” message asking me to register. I chose the “demo version” to try it out and another message popped up saying that since I chose the demo version, features will be limited. Ok, I can understand that, no problem.

I finally get passed all the messages and I am now fully ready to try iRealSMS. However, I got immediately turned off by the limitations of the demo version. All my SMS showed as “demo” so I was really unable to read any text message. Very unconvenient, even for just a demo version.

Not discouraged yet, I started playing with the app anyways and explore a little more these features. You can view your SMS in conversation mode or in a timeline, which is actually my preferred mode. Once you’ve viewed a text message, you can forward this text message or simply delete it. So far, so good.

A very interesting feature is that you can search your SMS. Let’s say you have 1,000 of them in your inbox and you’re looking for this girl’s number that your friend texted you 3 weeks ago, simply start typing what you’re looking for and it will display search results. That has to be one of my favorite features on this app.

The landscape typing mode is very neat too. Nothing revolutionary on this side but it’s nice to be able to type in landscape mode. The typing mode also allows you to easily insert the contact info of one of your contacts in the text message. Let’s say you want to text your friend’s address to one of your friends, simply tap the “insert” button and it takes you to to your contacts. From there, choose the appropriate contact and select what info (email, phone number or address) you want to insert in the text. This is also a great feature!

I was very annoyed by this demo version though. It crashed on me once but the most annoying thing is that I couldn’t read my text messages. “Oh well” I said to myself, “let’s try to send a text message”… That’s when the trouble started for me.

I typed my text message and tapped “send”. It took a few seconds and then it gave me an error message saying that it couldn’t send the text message due to some error. Mm… ok… not good! I tried again. Same thing. I exit the app and go to the native SMS app and I try to send a text message from there. That’s when something I had never seen before happened. It showed that I had -1 text message (see image below). What is that supposed to mean? -1? I can understand “0 text message” but I can’t figure out what “-1” means…

I wasn’t able to send text messages from my native SMS app either and I started to freak out thinking that iRealSMS had messed up my iPhone. I rebooted the phone and I now had “-2 text messages” showing up on my iPhone. WTF? I was still unable to send text messages. I then decided to clear all my SMS messages hoping it would help. It did. I deleted all my SMS and doing this made the “-2 text messages” disappear and most importantly I was now able to send text messages again.

After that, I launched Cydia and uninstalled iRealSMS. I went to the company’s website and realized the app was for sale for 10 Euros (about $13). If you want my opinion, it’s way too expensive for taking the risk to mess up your iPhone. I am kind of disappointed because this application seemed to have great potential. All the features available in iRealSMS are great and I would use most of them on a daily basis but I do think it is too expensive and that I’d rather keep my iPhone safe. Hopefully a future update will clear this issue I had, and maybe give less limitation to what you can do with the demo version.