Unable to send and receive SMS text messages on iPhone? Here is how to fix it

One of the selling points of the iOS platform is its built-in instant messaging (IM) service, iMessage, which allows iOS users to carry out consistent conversations across all of their Apple devices.

Unlike traditional SMS text messages, iMessage supports text messages, photos or video media via data. In reality, iMessage will not replace traditional SMS conversations which work over the carrier channel. However, a good number of users have reported having problems with sending or receiving SMS text messages on their iPhone. Luckily, there are several things you can do to fix it.

1. Restart your iPhone

Rebooting your device seems to be the simplest to solve the problem. To do this:


  • Step 1:  Press and hold down the power button on the right side (iPhone 6 or later), and top (all the other iPhones, and iPads).
  • Step 2: While holding the power button, press and hold the home button on your device.
  • Step 3: Hold both power and home buttons to turn off the screen, and continue to hold them until the screen turns back on and you see the Apple logo.

2. Switch off LTE or use it for data only

The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus features VoLTE – voice over LTE – if you live in a crowded place or in an area where your carrier is expanding, you will not be able to send or receive text messages on your iPhone. All you need to do is to use LTE only for data, but this trick should be temporary by now.


  • Step 1: Launch the Settings app on your iPhone
  • Step 2: Tap on Cellular.
  • Step 3:  Tap on Enable LTE.
  • Step 4: Select Data Only.
  • Step 5: Restart your iPhone.

Once your iPhone finishes restarting, try sending a SMS text message to make sure you nailed it.

3. Reset your network settings

If you still can’t send and receive SMS text messages, you can reset network using the below steps:

  • Step 1:  Head to the Settings app.
  • Step 2:  Tap on General.
  • Step 3:  Tap on Reset.
  • Step 4:  Tap on Reset Network Settings.
  • Step 5: Confirm and reboot your device.

4. Restore iPhone to its original factory settings

If you still can’t send and receive SMS, and you have exhausted all your basic troubleshooting options, setting up your iPhone as new may be the most effective way to solve the problem.

If you want to erase all content and settings on your iPhone, iPad, you can follow the steps below:

Note: To restore an iPhone or iPad, you will be required to turn off Find My iPhone first.


  • Step 1: Open iTunes on your Mac or Windows PC.
  • Step 2: Connect your iPhone or iPad to your computer with the cable. Restoring means all your content and settings will be erased, so you need to backup all your iPhone’s data to your iCloud account, including the apps and app data.


  • Step 3: Click on Restore iPhone button, and iTunes will erase your device and install the latest iOS.


  • Step 4: Once it’s done, your device will restore to factory settings, and you can set it up as new.


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