How to Fix iMessage or Facetime waiting for activation

iMessage and Facetime are 2 of the most used Apple’s services. They abound with features integrated into a very simple, fluid, and intuitive user interface. That’s why iFolks love them so much. However, many users are experiencing an issue while activating iMessage or Facetime on their iPhones and iPads. A message “Waiting for activation” appears on their iDevices whenever they are trying to use iMessage or Facetime. And, after a while, another “Activation unsuccessful” message shows up on their screens. And, getting these activation error messages whenever you want to communicate with your family and friends is not fun at all.

In this short article, you can find an explanation, how to fix the iMessage and Facetime waiting for activation issue on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch.

Before You Start With the Fixes

Here are the things you need to sort out in order to make iMessage and FaceTime available on your iDevice.

  • Both Apple’s services, iMessage, and FaceTime require a stable internet connection to work correctly. So, make sure you have a good internet connection. (Wi-Fi or 4G Cellular is preferable)
  • In order to use these services, you need a valid Apple ID. Go to and check your account.
  • When using cellular data, make sure that your mobile provider supports iMessage and Facetime. If not sure, contact their support team to verify any limitations on your service.
  • If using cellular data, check your iPhone’s carrier settings. You need to download the specific carrier settings whenever you insert a new SIM card into your iPhone.
  • Check if your iDevice’s date and time are set

After you finish with these steps, you can jump into the next section and fix the issue.

iMessage Waiting For Activation Tips

First, try disabling and enabling iMessage on your iDevice.

  1. Go to Settings, tap on Messages, and turn off the iMessage
  2. Now, turn the toggle back on, and a popup message will appear informing your carrier may charge for text (SMS) messages.
  3. Click cancel, and iMessage should activate itself. However, iMessage is still not fully activated. Now you have activated iMessage via e-mail. You can still send and receive messages, but only with your e-mail address.

Sing out and then sign back in

  1. Go to Settings and tap on Messages.
  2. Now, open Send & Receive and you should see your Apple ID in here.
  3. Tap on it and then choose Sing Out.
  4. Now, switch off the iMessage
  5. Wait for a couple of seconds and while doing that, turn off and back on WiFi.
  6. Now, enter your Apple ID in Messages and try to activate the iMessage

Facetime Waiting For Activation Tips

Allow Restrictions

  1. Go to Settings and tap on General.
  2. Open the Restrictions section and make sure the FaceTime toggle is on.
  3. Wile at Restrictions section, tap on Accounts and make sure Allow Changes is enabled.

iMessage/FaceTime Waiting for Activation Tips

Try restarting your device.

  1. Press and hold the Power button, until you see “slide to power off” on your screen.
  2. Now, slide the slider, and your iDevice will shut down.
  3. After your device powers off, press the power button again to turn it back on.

On iPhones only, check your phone number.

  1. Turn off FaceTime and iMessage.

Go to Settings, open the Messages section, and turn off the iMessage toggle to turn off iMessage.

Go to Settings, open the FaceTime section, and turn off the FaceTime toggle.

  1. Now, go to Settings tap on Phone, and check if your phone number is reflected here.
  2. If there is no phone number next to My Number, restart your iPhone and check again.
  3. If your phone number appears, turn on iMessage and FaceTime.

Reset your network settings

  1. Go to Settings, tap on General and open Reset.
  2. Now tap on Reset Network Settings and type your passcode if required.

Reset All Settings

Note: Before performing this step keep in mind that it will revert all your settings to a factory state.

  1. Go to Settings, tap on General and open Reset.
  2. Now, choose Reset All Settings
  3. Enter your passcode if required.

If none of the previous methods didn’t give you the wanted results, please try the following method.

Reset Your iDevice to Factory Settings to fix iMessage/Facetime Activation Error

This method will delete all the files and settings from your iDevice, and will revert it to a factory condition. So, before performing this step, I recommend backing up your data. If you don’t know how to do it, check the Backup section in the following article How To Start iPhone X in DFU Mode.

  1. Now, go to Settings, tap on Messages, and disable iMessage.
  2. Go, back to Settings, tap on General and open the Reset
  3. Tap on Erase All Content and Settings and confirm with taping on Erase now.
  4. If required enter your passcode, and the process will begin.
  5. When iOS setup assistant shows up, select Set Up as New iPhone.
  6. Now, sign in with your Apple ID and try if iMessage and Facetime work?
  7. After you confirm, you can restore your device from the backup you have created before.

For most users, this method fixed the iMessage and FaceTime issue on the first try. However, try it yourself and let us know the outcome in the comment section below.

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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How to Fix iMessage or Facetime waiting for activation

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