How to Fix iMessage “Waiting for Activation” Error on iPhone

In this digital age, people have got hundreds of ways to communicate with each other, without using a penny. With mobile data or Wi-Fi internet, users like to chat or talk on WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Google Hangout, Skype and more. Here, I have noticed that iMessage app in iPhone is given step-motherly treatment.

But in the absence of mobile data or Wi-Fi internet, everybody resorts to the good old iMessage app to exchange short messages. And then disaster strikes if the user receives “Waiting for Activation” error on his iPhone.

Now that user is in a tight spot. But every problem has solution; and here, you get more than one solution. Before going ahead, you should read the following carefully:

Is your number listed in Phone app? Your number normally appears on the top of Contacts as My Number. If you don’t see your number, launch SettingsPhoneMy Number and type in your number.

Check the Date and Time are shown correctly. Also set this option as “Set Automatically” and check the Time Zone shows correct zone. Your iPhone should show the right time.

Check that your mobile data is working properly as Wi-Fi fluctuations can create problems in iMessage activation.

It has been noticed that the message sent out for activation goes out as an international SMS; at this, you need to ensure that your mobile service provider permits such messages and you should have enough amount to send international messages.

How to Fix iMessage Stuck on Waiting for Activation Error on iPhone Running iOS 9 or iOS 10:

Solution 1. Contact the service provider

If the mobile service provider has imposed any restrictions, blocks or filters on your iMessage, you need to talk to your carrier support personnel and resolve the issue.


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Solution 2. Put your iPhone on Airplane mode

Technology offers you bizarre solutions and this is one of the weirdest solutions. Maybe this can work in your case. Follow the steps mentioned below:

Step #1: Launch Settings app and then tap on Messages to turn off iMessage. While there, you should also toggle FaceTime off.

Step #2: Toggle Airplane mode ON. This will shut down Wi-Fi automatically.

Step #3: Now turn Wi-Fi ON.

Step #4: Go back to Messages and toggle iMessage ON.

Step #5: You will be asked to enter your Apple ID; if you have already added your Apple ID, your time will be saved.

Step #6: Go back to Settings and toggle Airplane mode OFF.

Step #7: Normally, users get to see a notification: ‘Your carrier may charge for SMS. Tap on OK.

Step #8: Alternatively, you can go to Messages and toggle iMessage OFF and then toggle it ON again.

Step #9: After a few seconds, iMessage should be activated.

Step #10: Now you can see a greyed out number and an email ID. After a while, the number should be checked.

If the above procedure doesn’t work, scroll down.

Solution 3. Sign out, sign in Apple ID

Step #1: Open Settings and tap on Message. Scroll down and tap on ‘Send & Receive’.

Step #2: Tap on Apple ID and press Sign Out.

Step #3: Toggle iMessage OFF.

Step #4: After a few seconds, toggle iMessage ON. Meanwhile, you can turn Wi-Fi ON and OFF.

Step #5: Type in your Apple ID and try to reactivate iMessage.

Solution 4. Reset or Restore iPhone

As a last resort, you can either go for Resetting or Restoring iPhone. Note that you need to reset your location settings, and then go for iPhone reset. Do not worry about your data lost as it is safe in this forced reboot. After reset, log in with your Apple ID and set up iMessage afresh.

If this fails to give any result, you should restore your iPhone.

Whatever result you get, please share your feedback on FacebookTwitter and Google Plus. If luck will smile upon you, you may get some help from other readers.

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