SOS Only On iPhone How To Fix! [2023]

The Emergency SOS feature on iPhones is undeniably a vital safety tool, designed to assist users in quickly contacting emergency services and sharing their precise location with designated contacts during urgent situations. Nevertheless, there are instances where users encounter a frustrating scenario where their iPhone becomes locked in Emergency SOS mode. This issue hinders their ability to access the phone\’s regular functions.

But what triggers this problem? And what steps can be taken to exit the Emergency SOS mode on an iPhone? This article provides insights into the causes of this predicament, along with various solutions to resolve the issue of an iPhone being stuck in emergency SOS mode. Without further delay, let\’s delve into the specifics!

What Is SOS Only iPhone?

Generally, the status bar—the highest part of your iPhone\’s display—shows the information about your network. If you have cellular service enrolled, this includes the signal strength and the kind of network you are connected to. Occasionally, though, the display might instead show an SOS or \’SOS-only\’ indicator.

This symbol indicates that the service area of your mobile network provider is not covered by your device. In particular, the \’SOS-only\’ alert shows up on the status bar when you travel to areas where your provider does not have network coverage..

You are unable to send SMS messages or make regular phone calls in these situations. In a similar vein, you cannot access the internet using cellular data. That being said, even if your iPhone only shows the SOS signal, you can still use emergency call services in nations like the USA, Canada, or Australia. For example, if your iPhone is displaying the SOS-only alert, you can still call 911 in the United States.

Common Causes Of Sos Only On iPhone

Here are five common causes for the SOS Only on iPhone issue that users frequently encounter:

  • Weak or No Network Coverage: The most common reason is being in an area where the cellular network\’s signal is weak or nonexistent. This often happens in remote areas, inside buildings with thick walls, or in underground locations.
  • SIM Card Problems: Issues such as a poorly inserted SIM card, a damaged SIM, or a SIM that hasn\’t been properly activated can lead to the SOS Only message.
  • Network Provider Outages: Service interruptions or maintenance by the network provider can temporarily disrupt connectivity, resulting in the SOS Only status.
  • Incorrect Network Settings: Sometimes, the network settings on the iPhone might be configured incorrectly or become corrupted, leading to connectivity issues.
  • Software Glitches: Bugs or glitches in the iPhone\’s operating system, especially after an update, can occasionally cause network-related problems, including the SOS Only message.

Step-By-Step Guide To Fix \’SOS Only\’ On Your iPhone

1. Change Your Location:


If you\’re in an area with poor network coverage from providers like AT&T or Verizon Wireless, try moving to a different location to see if the \”SOS Only\” sign disappears.

2. Restart Mobile Data:

  • Go to the Control Center on your iPhone.
  • Tap the Mobile Data icon to turn it off.
  • Wait for 2-3 seconds, then tap it again to turn it back on.

3. Enable Data Roaming:

  • Navigate to Settings > Cellular or Mobile Data.
  • Select the SIM card with roaming service (for dual SIM users) or your single SIM.
  • Turn on the Data Roaming toggle switch.

4. Switch To 4G Network:

  • Go to Settings > Cellular/Mobile Data.
  • Select your SIM card.
  • Tap on Voice & Data and choose 4G/LTE.

5. Restart Your iPhone:


  • Press and hold the Side button and volume down button until the power-off slider appears.
  • Slide to power off, wait for a moment, then press and hold the power button to turn it back on.

6. Change Network Selection Mode:

  • Go to Settings > Cellular or Mobile Data.
  • Select your SIM card and tap on Network Selection.
  • Turn off the Automatic toggle, wait a few seconds, then turn it back on.

7. Check For Carrier Settings Update:


  • Connect to Wi-Fi, then navigate to Settings > General > About.
  • If an update is available, follow the prompts to update your carrier settings.

8. Update iOS:

  • Go to Settings > General > Software Update.
  • If an update is available, download and install it.

9. Reinsert SIM Card:

  • Power off your iPhone, remove the SIM card, check it for damage, then reinsert it.

10. Reset Network Settings:


  • Navigate to Settings > General > Transfer or Reset iPhone.
  • Tap on Reset and choose Reset Network Settings (this will erase Wi-Fi networks and passwords, mobile data settings, and VPN settings).

11. Contact Carrier Customer Support:


If none of the above steps work, contact your network service provider\’s customer support for further assistance. They may replace your SIM card or help with setting up an eSIM.


While handling \’SOS Only\’ on your iPhone can be difficult, you should be able to quickly fix the problem with these suggestions. Always remember that it\’s usually quicker and easier to start with the simplest solutions. Please don\’t hesitate to contact your carrier for support if you\’re still having issues.

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