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iPhone: Troubleshooting activation issues

Symptoms

Your iPhone may display one of the following messages when you attempt to activate it:

  • "Your iPhone could not be activated because the activation server is temporarily unavailable."
  • "The SIM card inserted in this iPhone does not appear to be supported"
  • "The iPhone is not recognized and cannot be activated for service."
  • "iTunes was unable to verify your device."

Resolution

Perform the following steps if you receive one of the messages above:

  1. Restart the iPhone.
  2. Try another means of reaching the activation server and attempt to activate.
    • Try connecting to a known-good Wi-Fi network if you're unable to activate using a cellular data connection.
    • Try connecting to iTunes if you're unable to activate using Wi-Fi.
  3. Restore the iPhone.

If you receive an alert message when you attempt to activate your iPhone, try to place the iPhone in recovery mode and perform a restore. If you're still unable to complete the setup assistant due to an activation error, contact Apple for assistance.

Additional Information

If you are asked to enter a password to proceed with activating the iPhone, Activation Lock may be enabled as part of Find my iPhone.

Last Modified: Sep 18, 2013
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  • Last Modified: Sep 18, 2013
  • Article: TS3424
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