Is Textnow down?

Textnow was working fine for me the last several months, but today my phone has been showing "No Network" for the last 4-5 hours. Reboots don't help. Can't do a profile/PRL update. Anyone else seeing this?

I have Textnow on a Sprint phone. Have they moved to GSM already, and is that what's causing the problem?

they are still on sprint

still working for me, just tested this morning- shows LTE with full bars

Now it is 6 of us around here that are showing "No service" on our Textnow phones. Mine and 2 other phones are Sprint phones. The rest are unlocked phones. Chat doesn't know what's going on.

Well, there goes my first guess that you had a bad SIM card....
Have you tried moving to a different location? (And hopefully different tower...)

I was hoping things would somehow magically get resolved, but no such luck. Still shows No Network.

Been messing around with the settings on my phone too.

When I change the "Preferred Network Mode" setting from "Automatic" to "LTE/CDMA" I get the message:

"unable to establish wireless data connection
LTE: ESM -x EMM -15"

Does that give any clue to what might be going on?

Although I am not sure what the issue could be, I can share that the TextNow line I have with a Sprint SIM under an iPhone 6s has been working (yesterday and today confirmed working). When used, the calls have been surprisingly clear and without issue. The only exception to that is calling someone with a magic jack (their audio does not come back clear).

Searching for that error message provides plenty of results over several years, but it does seem to be a descriptive error message (no LTE connection) rather than pointing to a specific problem that the user can address.

Several discussions over several years about Samsung OS updates that caused this (but not always Samsung, either). Also some indications that it might be caused by a messed-up tower setting.
As you're reporting the same error with multiple users, unless they're all using the same phone manufacturer that have all run updates at the same time.... a tower (or group of towers) seems more likely.

If none of your users can run PRL/Profile updates, that might point towards the network side, too.

The only 'fix' I read about during my brief search was putting the phone in 3G/CDMA only mode. I don't know if TextNow provides a data connection on 3G, or only on LTE. Even if it does connect to data on 3G, my trials years ago with VoIP on 3G CDMA were not enjoyable. (3G was fast enough, but the call quality was bad with a lot more latency, etc.).

If any of your users is going to be traveling about, it would be good to see if they can do a PRL/Profile update outside of your immediate area, and whether LTE works in that location. (And whether it fails again when it returns to home area.)

For another reference point, mine is still working on a Moto E4 from Visible.

Anything you can share as to the specifics of your 6 phones? I.e. what devices, what android version, etc.
Is it possible you nearest sprint tower is down, have you gone anywhere else to see if you get signal off a different tower?

The problem according to Chat, is due to the fact that TMobile is decommissioning Sprint towers. The only Sprint tower in this area is therefore out of commission. That’s the reason why our phones have no service.

The explanation makes sense. What I don’t like is that Textnow isn’t doing anything to ensure that service to the phones is restored. Chat had no idea how the problem would be solved - if ever it will be solved, that is.

I tried getting my Sprint phone to latch on to TMobile’s network by changing network settings to GSM. The phone searched and found TMo but gave me the message that the SIM isn’t provisioned for the network operator.

So I’m stuck with no service.

The unlocked phone owners are trying to wrangle a free GSM SIM from Textnow. They haven’t been successful so far.

Well, that sucks.
I don't think there's anything TextNow can do at this point to restore service in your area if the towers have been repurposed. Only T-Mobile can control the use of the legacy-Sprint towers.

I haven't seen any announcement that TextNow is offering GSM service yet, so this may not be an option that TextNow can offer even if they were inclined.

T-Mobile is actively refarming Sprint spectrum for use on its own network but completely decommissioning all Sprint towers in a particular area is rare at this point. If feasible, you might try traveling a short distance to see if you're able to pick up Sprint signal. If not, TextNow may need to provide a better explanation.

Phoniac does say there is only a single Sprint tower is the area. If so, changing one tower is the same as 'completely decommissioning all towers in the area'.

Definitely worth keeping an eye open for Sprint signal when traveling about. (I haven't been doing much of that.....)

I agree that it's unusual, but there are a number of reports of this happening: Seems the most likely areas to experience this issue so far are areas with only fair Sprint coverage, and existent, but poor, T-Mobile coverage-- because those are the areas where T-Mobile can see an immediate boost to T-mobile coverage by repurposing towers.

My city had good preexisting coverage from both Sprint and T-Mobile, so they haven't been quick to refarm towers. They haven't even been quick to implement 600mhz coverage that they bought pre-merger. .

This morning, just like that, my phone is back in service. Same thing happened to the rest of the phones that were down along with mine.

I have no idea how things corrected themselves auto-magically. I’m just going to say that sometimes, some stories do have happy endings.

Interesting. I noticed improvement shortly after the merger (especially as of late), so I figured that the SIM was somehow provisioned to use both networks. Either way, glad to hear that it all worked out!

I too am baffled by how the problem resolved on its own. Really hadn’t expected it to, after what Chat conveyed.

Interesting idea, that the sim may be provisioned for both networks. Mine is a Sprint phone, and therefore does have gsm radios, so I suppose it is theoretically possible. But I had tried connecting to TMobile and it said my sim wasn’t provisioned for use on TMobile. I guessed that was because the phone is locked to Sprint.

Does anyone know how I could get this Sprint phone unlocked for use on TMobile/at&t? And what happens to all the Sprint phones if they cannot be unlocked?

Reading across several forums, this has become a rather big, mysterious, and sometimes frustrating question.
I've read a few posts where both Sprint and T-Mobile denied they had capability/responsibility of unlocking Sprint phones that meet the Sprint unlocking requirements-- as parts of the Sprint autonomous system get shuttered, or absorbed into T-Mobile's system. The Sprint backbone system just isn't there in it's complete form, or at least not accessible to the individual user, and T-Mobile sometimes says it's not in their bailiwick.

And sometimes later model phones are reported as suddenly becoming T-Mobile eligible, even though they were previously locked to Sprint,without any specific owner request. But in those cases, they seem to remain locked to Sprint/T-Mobile, not unlocked for other networks-- and presumably will now be required to meet T-Mobile's requirements for other-carrier unlocking, instead of the original Sprint unlocking requirements. Or perhaps they'll remain locked to T-Mobile forever, if T-Mobile decides to deny unlocking for phones T-Mobile didn't sell.

For phones that would be useful elsewhere if unlocked, and qualify for Sprint unlocking, I'd follow up now-- and be prepared to file an FCC complaint if you get stonewalled in the process. I don't know what the FCC position is, but it's a route to use if you feel like you're being stonewalled.

For phones that would be useful on T-Mobile's network, but not technically qualifying for unlocking by Sprint rules, I'd try a T-Mobile SIM (doesn't need to be active), and see if that results in an error message. I would be surprised if this extends to AT&T use, though.

The Sprint-locked devices I have are mostly older, and manufacturer-crippled (by lacking bands or GSM radios, or VoLTE capability) for use on other carriers, and I expect them to become bricks, or in my case to see future use as mini-tablets, MP3 players, etc. Their locked/unlocked status is mostly irrelevant, since they won't have a network to connect to.

I certainly wish (like many) that there was more clarity on what's happening. I would certainly go the FCC route if you do run into walls unlocking an eligible device.

Maybe I got lucky because the device I am using for TextNow is an iPhone 6s that's unlocked and works with any carrier (at least it has with all I have thrown at it). Being that service at my location was minimal prior to the merger and that it has improved quite a bit, I came to the conclusion that I must be picking up T-Mobile's service despite the provider still reading as Sprint.