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iMessage won’t activate on new iPhone.


iMessage won’t activate on new iPhone.


I set up my new iPhone 12 pro max last night. (Purchased direct from Apple).

iMessage is stuck on “waiting for activation...”

I can see through my three account that the phone is sending a message to a 0044 number to activate it. But no joy.

I’ve tried turning phone off and on, turning iMessage off and on, signing out from my Apple ID for iMessage.

Nothing seems to work. Any suggestions?

Have had a look on another forum and there appears to be a similar issue on 48. A possible fix is to change the APN settings.

Can someone from Three please put up what the correct APN settings are and I’ll double check mine are correct.

3 Community Manager

The information given here is amazing and there have been others on the 3Community who have PM'd me directly. Thank you all. I've linked in with our tech team and escalated this. I will come back here with an update as soon as I have one


@Dalk  @iPhoneuser  @DavidS 

I still have my Xs Max which I upgraded from.  I put my sim back into it to see if I could get iMessage to work on it and it wouldn't.  I had that phone for over 2 years and iMessage worked fine on it, so the issues are not phone-specific. 


Apple are to ring me later this evening, but by the looks of it they won't be able to do much. 


Checking my usage again, there was one attempt to text the 0044 number today and one yesterday, compared to the first day when I set the phone up when there were multiple attempts.


I am sure the apple servers were under pressure on launch day, but surely by now they're returning to normal levels.


I really do think the number has been blocked or restricted by Three due to the amount of messages being sent to it in a short space of time.  It appears my phone has sent 22 messages to this number since Saturday.



Same for me with my old iPhone. Issue is easily replicable for three engineers to test with a new SIM card in any iPhone they have.

I have the same problem on a new iPhone 12 Pro Max.

Apple have launched an investigation on their side. This will take up to 5 working days. They’ve undertaken to get back to me on Saturday.

Hopefully three will figure out what’s wrong before that.

Apple have launched an investigation on their side. This will take up to 5 working days. They’ve undertaken to get back to me on Saturday.

Hopefully three will figure out what’s wrong before that

Hi Deborah,

Is there an update on this?

Items to note:

1. Apple have investigated and confirmed that issue is not on their side and lays fully on Three's side to resolve the outage. (Case has been closed by apple)

2. I have confirmed issue is widespread on Three network and appears to be impacting all people who have changed over their sims to a different iphone since Friday.  (i.e. issue is not confined to just iPhone 12)

3. I have confirmed that users on other networks such as Vodafone are not experiencing similar iMessage activation errors. (i.e. issue is Three specific)

4. Issue can be easily replicated by any three customer support/engineers by inserting a new number sim into any iPhone. 


Is it possible to provide ETA on a fix and regular updates on this forum as I know a lot of people are monitoring this page wondering if the issue has been resolved (who do not want to or can spend hours on phone to support like we have).


While I appreciate these things can take time to look into, issue has been occurring since at least Friday and has been reported to three by me on Sunday and others on Saturday. After 48+ hours of what amounts to a widespread outage (i.e. users unable to receive imessages sent to their phone numbers), I would expect to begin to start seeing light at the end of the tunnel at this point.

Good morning all.

Our tech team has been investigating this on your behalf and again I want to thank everyone here for giving the 3Community your examples as this allowed us to see that several people have the same difficulty with iMessage in one place. With your information, we escalated this to our tech team yesterday to find the root cause. I've just come out of a meeting regarding this and there is a light at the end of the tunnel, iMessage activation is working for some of our customers and test phones.

Can you all start the iMessage activation again? Let me know if it fails and I will take your specific numbers back to our team. Together we'll find a solution to this and of course, I'll come back here with updates either way.

Just tried it. It’s working!!

Thanks very much for getting this sorted!

Do you mind me asking what was the issue?