Have you ever noticed your iPhone displaying “SOS Only” where you normally see your carrier signal? This indication means your device isn’t connected to a network but can still make emergency calls.

In this post, we’ll walk you through several steps to help you reconnect to your network and resolve this issue.

why does my phone say sos only?

According to AcroMean When your iPhone displays “SOS Only,” it signifies that you are outside the normal operating range of your cellular service provider.

You can’t make or receive regular phone calls, send messages, or use cellular data, but your phone can still make emergency calls.

The SOS Only iPhone signal is a warning that your phone is unable to connect to the cellular network properly and is restricted to emergency calls only because it is out of range of your carrier’s network.

This can occur in remote areas without cellular coverage, such as a desert, mountainous region, or out at sea.

Toggle Airplane Mode On & Off

  • Quick Network Reset: Sometimes, simply toggling the airplane mode on and off can fix the issue. This acts as a quick reset for your phone’s network connection.
  • Procedure: Open your settings, turn on airplane mode, wait a few seconds, then turn it off again.

Cellular Settings Adjustment

  • Reactivating Network Line: If airplane mode doesn’t work, try adjusting your cellular settings.
  • Steps to Follow: Go to Settings > Cellular, Primary Line > then toggle your primary line off and on. This can help in reactivating your network and line.

Checking Physical SIM Card

  • SIM Card Inspection: For those with a physical SIM card, removing, checking, and reinserting the card can be beneficial.
  • Cleaning Tip: Ensure there’s no dust or damage on the SIM card before reinserting.

Carrier Settings Update

  • Firmware Update: Sometimes, the issue might be due to outdated carrier settings.
  • How to Update: Go to Settings > General > About. check If there’s an available update, proceed to update your carrier settings.

Reset Network Settings

  • Comprehensive Network Reset: As a more thorough approach, reset your network settings.
  • Procedure: Go to Settings > General > Transfer or Reset iPhone > Reset > Reset Network Settings. This will restart your phone and reset all network settings.
get rid of SOS only on iPhone

Force Restart

  • Last Resort – Rebooting: If all else fails, a force restart of your iPhone might do the trick.
  • How to Force Restart: Quickly press and release the volume up button, then the volume down button, followed by pressing and holding the side button until the Apple logo appears.

Force Restart Specific to iPhone 14:

  • Procedure:
    • Press and quickly release the volume up button.
    • Press and quickly release the volume down button.
    • Press and hold the side button until the Apple logo appears.
  • Purpose: This method can help in resuming the signal search on your iPhone, especially after an iOS update or SIM card insertion.


Following these steps should help you get rid of SOS only on iPhone on your iPhone. If the problem persists, it may be best to contact Apple Support or visit an Apple Store for further assistance.