I have used SIM300 and SIM900 modules for years, and was always reading both PDU and TEXT encoded messages - while in TEXT mode (with AT+CMGL="REC UNREAD").
Only when I wanted to send an PDU encoded SMS, I switched to PDU mode.
That worked perfectly, until I had to do it for the SIM800 module. With SIM800, when I list a message with binary content, I get normal SMS header, but not the complete user content, but only first few bytes, and zeroes after that.
I know that I could receive all messages as PDU, and than convert to TEXT, but I want to avoid that if there is any way to force SIM800 to list PDU messages while in TEXT mode, like it was on SIM900.
Does anyone have some experience with that?