When you’re in a place with weak or no cellular network coverage, Wi-Fi calling is a convenient way to making clear and reliable phone calls over an active Wi-Fi network. So it can be frustrating when WiFi calling is not working on your iPhone.
In this guide, you’ll learn simple troubleshooting tips that will help you fix Wi-Fi calling issues on your iPhone.
Troubleshooting & Fixing Wi-Fi Calling Issues on iPhone
There’s not a one-size-fits-all solution for fixing Wi-Fi calling issues on an iPhone. As there are many different reasons why Wi-Fi calls might not work on your iPhone. But don’t worry, we’ve got multiple solutions for you to try out.
Here’re the tips that you’ll learn about in this guide.
If you recently got your iPhone or never used Wi-Fi calling before, your device may not be set up for Wi-Fi calling by default (most are not). It’s also possible that if it was on, an update that came through may have deactivated the feature. Before anything else, make sure that Wi-Fi calling is enabled.
To do this on your iPhone, go to Settings > Cellular > Wi-Fi Calling and turn it on. If you look at your status bar, you should see “Wi-Fi” next to the name of your mobile carrier.
2. Restart Your iPhone
Wi-Fi calling, as well as many other miscellaneously malfunctioning features, can be easily repaired with a simple device reset. Older iPhones (with a home button) can be restarted by holding the button on the side of the device until a slider to “Power Off” appears.
From here it’s just a matter of dragging the slider and wait for the phone to turn off (which will take about 30 seconds). Once the device has powered down, simply hold the side button again until the Apple logo displays on the screen, signaling the device’s restart.
The newer iPhone version requires that you hold down one of the Volume buttons along with the side button to bring up the “Power Off” slider, then dragging it to power the device off. Then reactivate it by holding down the side button to turn your phone back on.
3. Check for a Software Update
Regular updates are being pushed out to Apple devices by the company frequently. Most of these are minor packs of recently developed and tested fixes to reported bugs, as well as minor tweaks and software enhancements.
If your device is not up to the latest version or service release, it is possible that certain functions will not work accordingly or at all. This includes Wi-Fi calling.
To update your iPhone to the latest version, just check for a presence of a new update that you do not yet have by going in the General section of the Settings menu, and select Software Update. The next screen will tell you if an update is available, and if so, you can install it. This will hopefully address your Wi-Fi calling struggles.
4. Check for a Carrier Update
Software updates aside, your mobile carrier may also push an update to your iPhone device. These updates regularly make tweaks and improvements to connectivity for networks and bolster the efficiency of features including Wi-Fi calling.
Unlike a software update, to check for a carrier update from the General section of the Settings menu, go to the About page. A carrier update should automatically appear on the page if one exists. You will be prompted to download it, then install it. When it is done, restart your device to formally activate the update’s changes.
5. Double Check Your Rooter
It is clear that Wi-Fi calling requires the ability to connect to your Wi-Fi. If there is a problem with achieving this connection, Wi-Fi calling use will be out of the question.
Even when a device is up to date and Wi-Fi calling is enabled, without Wi-Fi, making calls is not feasible. If the problem is with the network, it is important to check if your connection hub (your router) is working correctly.
When Wi-Fi is unavailable, phones default to the mobile data from the carrier. So while you can navigate to a website on your phone, it may connect via mobile data. A better method is to connect to another device, such as a PC, which will not link to a mobile network and relies on Wi-Fi for connectivity. If you can navigate to a website that way, then the Wi-Fi is likely fine.
Sometimes the best method is to refresh the Wi-Fi connectivity by simply unplugging the router for about 30 seconds, then plugging it back in, and letting it reset for a couple of minutes. This usually straightens out any router-based network connectivity issues.
6. Toggle On and Off Airplane Mode
Another method is to cut your iPhone from any connections including mobile data, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. You can do so by putting your iPhone in Airplane mode, turning off most of its network connections. Then simply disable Airplane mode again, and see if your Wi-Fi calling works.
Toggling Airplane mode on and off couldn’t be simpler. Simple swipe over to your Control Center (the screen that features blue circles with your Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Mobile, and Airplane mode controls, and tap on the circle with the airplane.
Once the airplane highlights, all of the other connectivity circles should grey out. Tapping the airplane button again will deactivate airplane mode, reactivating all of the connections. You can also get to Airplane mode from the Settings menu.
7. Turn Off Mobile Data
Sometimes Wi-Fi calling will just not work if mobile data is activated. However, forcing the device to work with just a Wi-Fi connection sometimes fixes this problem. If you deactivate mobile data but keep the Wi-Fi on, your device will seek out the likeliest functional connection, which in this case would be your Wi-Fi.
You can turn the mobile data off from the Settings menu. Under “Celluar” toggle the active “Cellular Data” to off, then give confirm that you still have a Wi-Fi connection. You can do this by either giving Wi-Fi calling a shot or just navigating to a website. You can even leave mobile data off for a minute, then power it back on.
If the issue is still not fixed, you can leave your mobile data off for longer than a minute. But remember to reactivate it for when you are out of Wi-Fi range.
8. Reset Network Settings
If all of the previous attempts at fixing Wi-Fi calling have failed you, you can take a bit more of a drastic measure. In the time you may have used your phone, some settings change resulted in the inability to use Wi-Fi calling.
However, you can undo all the settings at once by reverting the phone to its default setup. By resetting all of your connections, you will need to re-establish a connection to your Wi-Fi network after the reset has been performed, as well as re-setup all VPNs.
You can do this from the Reset function located on the General tab of the Settings menu. In the Reset section, choose “Reset Network Settings”, enter your passcode and you will be prompted by the device that you do, in fact, want to take this action. Once you confirm, the settings will be restored.
9. Contact Your Wireless Carrier
If you have ruled out your device and your home network as the problem, it might be the carrier that has the issue. It is possible that your carrier simply does not support Wi-Fi Calling.
You can reach out to the carrier to verify this information. It is also possible that your carrier does support it, but your plan does not include it. Of course, if it usually works, and currently does not, it could be due to an outage in the area.
10. Restore Your iPhone to Factory Settings
If everything else has failed, there is one last plan of action, and that is to completely reset the iPhone to factory settings. This is a drastic measure, so keep in mind that it will purge anything off your phone so make sure you have a recent backup available. The steps in this guide will show you how to back up an iPhone to keep your data safe.
If you have a lot of pictures, apps, videos, and notes on the phone, this is an action you may want to think really hard about considering. In case you go down that road, keep in mind that this also may not fix the issue, or it could also remove some setting that is causing the Wi-Fi calling problem.
We hope we could help you finally activate and use Wi-Fi calling without any problems on your iPhone. If none of the above methods worked for you, you may need to reach out to Apple and review with them all of the things you tried. They have an excellent customer support team that can provide other methods of fixing this frustrating issue.