How to Turn iMessage Off on MacBook: A Step-by-Step Guide

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How to Turn iMessage off on MacBook


iMessage is an instant messaging service by Apple, available on all Apple devices, including MacBook. iMessage allows users to send and receive messages, photos, and videos to anyone with an Apple device, using their Apple ID and internet connection. However, there are circumstances when you may need to turn off iMessage on your MacBook, such as when you’re using a non-Apple device or when you’re getting too many notifications. In this article, we’ll go through the step-by-step process of turning off iMessage on your MacBook.

Check if iMessage is already turned off on MacBook

Before we jump into the process of turning off iMessage, it is essential to check if it is already turned off on your MacBook. Here are the steps to follow:

1. Open the Messages app on your MacBook.
2. Click on Messages in the menu bar.
3. From the dropdown menu, click on Preferences.
4. In the Accounts tab, you’ll see a list of all the accounts linked to iMessage.
5. Check if the Enable this account box is checked or unchecked.

If the box is unchecked, then iMessage is already turned off.

If the box is checked, then iMessage is still active, and you need to follow the steps below to turn it off.

Steps to Turn iMessage off on MacBook

Now that you’ve confirmed that iMessage is still active on your MacBook, let’s go through the process of turning it off. Here’s what you need to do:

1. Click on the Apple icon in the top left corner of your screen.
2. From the dropdown menu, click on System Preferences.
3. Select Messages from the list of options.
4. In the Accounts tab, deselect the checkbox next to iMessage to turn it off.

That’s it! By following these simple steps, you have successfully turned off iMessage on your MacBook.

Disabling iMessage on Individual Conversations

Sometimes, you may not want to turn off iMessage for all conversations and contacts. For example, you may want to continue using iMessage for some contacts, while disabling it for others. Here is how you can disable iMessage for individual conversations:

1. Open the Messages app on your MacBook.
2. Select the conversation where you want to turn off iMessage.
3. Click on Details in the upper right-hand corner of the conversation window.
4. In the Details window, deselect the checkbox next to iMessage.
5. The conversation will now default to SMS or MMS.

Possible Issues and Errors

While turning off iMessage is a simple process, you may encounter some issues or errors. Here are some of the common issues users may face when turning off iMessage on their MacBook:

1. iMessage not turning off: If iMessage is not turning off, try logging out of your Apple ID or restarting your MacBook.

2. Messages not syncing: After disabling iMessage, your messages may not sync properly. Try restarting your MacBook, or turning off iMessage on your other Apple devices.

3. Text messages not coming through: If you’re not receiving text messages from contacts who also have iPhones, try turning on Send as SMS in your Messages settings.

If the issue persists, you can contact Apple Support for further assistance.


In conclusion, iMessage is a useful feature on all Apple devices, including MacBook. However, there may be times when you need to turn it off for various reasons. By following the simple steps outlined in this article, you can quickly and easily turn off iMessage on your MacBook. Remember, if you encounter any issues or errors, try the troubleshooting tips provided, or contact Apple Support.


Q: Can I turn off iMessage temporarily?

A: Yes, you can turn off iMessage temporarily by following the steps outlined in this article. To turn it back on, simply follow the same steps and check the box next to iMessage.

Q: Will turning off iMessage delete my conversations?

A: No, turning off iMessage will not delete your conversations. However, if you turn it off for individual conversations, they will default to SMS or MMS, and you may lose some iMessage-specific features, such as read receipts and reactions.