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My iMessage still says "Waiting for activation..."

969836 Views 518 Replies Latest reply: Mar 19, 2014 9:23 AM by iscast RSS Branched to a new discussion.
  • tomas.bek Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 27, 2012 8:35 AM (in response to MPagani)

    OMG that was my problem as well! iMessage now works perfectly! Thanks!

  • tungddao Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hope you fell well when get it done! As you done, i had tried many times to restore, on/off imsg and debug data out/in. and that's the easy way to make this right at this moment!

    I am waiting for the new iOS 6.1 which will fix those bugs properly.


  • 3frommumbai Calculating status...

    An alternative solution is also to turn off Facetime and iMessage and then reset all settings (This will not delete any data on your iPhone, even if you select setup as a new iPhone). If it doesnt work you can continue with the restore which will definitely resolve the issue.

  • MPagani Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I did do that and it did not work as I did not have credit on my account to send an international sms.

  • sambadeedance Calculating status...

    Ok, to add my experience to the list, I switched today from AT&T to T-Mobile's cheapest monthly no-contract plan with my unlocked iPhone 4S. My iMessage said "Waiting for activation." Here's what fixed it, a combo of several solutions posted:


    1. I added money to my account (refill) to cover the potential cost of the international sms used to activate iMessage.


    2. I added a + 1 to my phone number. Settings- Phone- My Number and literally add a + 1 (area code)...


    3. I added My Info back in. Settings - Mail, Contacts, Calendars- My Info- and picked me from my contact list.


    4. I restarted my iphone with imessage OFF, and then turned it on. It warned me that I might be charged for activation, said "waiting for activation" and then suddenly switched to "iMessages can be sent bewteen iPhones..." And now it's working.


    I never tried resetting my phone completely. Good luck and thanks to all the previous solution posters!

  • reidei Calculating status...

    Since I also struggled and tried everything suggested except wiping my phone - I wanted to post that wiping my phone was the only thing that worked.


    I suspect this happened because I went from a non-facetime phone to a facetime phone and upon initial setup I set the phone up as a restore from my previous iphone.  I think the server was confused about my account and it all go stuck.  I say this because this is what worked (as others suggested)


    - backup my iphone to iTunes

    - erase all content under setting>general>reset  (I did this while not connected to the computer just in case)

    - going through prompts of setup configuration is selected SETUP AS NEW PHONE.  I connected to wifi and eventually entered my appleID when prompted.  For the facetime and iMessage prompts during setup I selected only my phone# (wouldn't think that would matter) Once all this was complete I went into settings>facetime and after a few seconds it was connected - same for iMessage.

    - I then REPEATED the steps starting with 'erase all content' and setup the phone as a restore from my itunes backup (I'm sure icloud backup would work as well).  I think that now that the apple server recognized my appleID as a valid facetime ID it all worked well because after the restore I went into facetime and iMessage and after a few seconds it was connected fine.


    Good luck everyone!

  • DocJekl Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Today I decided to add my Apple ID to facetime and imessage on my iphone 5.  Previously I've only used the phone number for Facetime/iMessage on iphones, and the iCloud ID on the iPad 4 and mini (all running iOS 6.0.1).


    When I finished adding the ID to my phone, my iPad asked me if i wanted to use my phone number on my AT&T ipad for iMessage and Facetime, since it was now associated with my apple ID.  I said yes, and it KILLED the iMessage and Facetime activation on my iPhone, and reset all my password data on the phone. The iPads were still working fine, but the phone number didn't stick (disapeared at some point).


    Rebooting iPhone, removing SIM card, and toggling iMessage and Facetime on and off didn't help to activate iMeesage or Facetime.  AT&T replaced the iPhone SIM card, no help.  Apple support had me go to Settings > General > Reset > Erase all content and settings, and then restore it from my iCloud backup from 1:12AM today.


    The restore of data worked, but it asked me to connect to iTunes to finish syncing my apps and content.  A similar thing happened when I restored and iCloud backup to my new iPad mini (had to finish connected to iTunes).  I back up to iCloud daily, and to the computer every weekend, so if I'd restored with iTunes I would have lost 3 days of texts and phone long instead of just 1.  Afterwards everything was fine and activated. 


    Then I tried adding my Apple ID to iMessage and Facetime again, and let it try to add the phone number to my iPads again, and this time everything went as planned!  If not, I was prepared to wipe and restore again, but give up adding phone number to iPads.  I DID NOT need to re-install iOS 6.0.1 from iTunes.


    Now I can send and receive iMessages on my iPhone or iPads, and have a copy of the entire conversation showing on all my mobile devices. 

  • gabykorupt Calculating status...

    riajul tip worked for me too, thank you.

  • aubreyny Calculating status...

    Just thought I'd try to help as much as possible since I also took hours trying to solve this problem. I toggled iMessage on and off, reset my network settings, rebooted my phone several times, and after so many repeats nothing was working. I even tried signing out of my apple id in hopes that my phone would have no choice but to send iMessages to my phone number. Unfortunately, it was still greyed out and under iMessage it said "waiting for activation". I thought I'd never get this problem fixed until I realized that the area I was in had poor cellular service. I had absolutely no bars. After I moved to an area with good service, my problem was fixed in no time! I still cannot believe how simple this was and I never thought of it. Point being..


    Hope this helps!

  • irshad.d Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 11, 2012 10:30 PM (in response to ailyoc)

    hey can you help me with steps i got same problem and vodafone not able to help me solve it

  • NamNas Calculating status...

    Just turned On cellular data and make sure 3G is on, both Facetime and iMessage were activated

    Just turn on 3G

  • Aixerona Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 20, 2012 8:19 AM (in response to NamNas)

    Apparently, I'm never going to get it back on since I only use my facetime/imessage over wifi (no contract anymore - being laid off is a *****). Unless someone knows how this can be resolved when you have no phone carrier, I guess I'm without. SO! Any help would be great.

  • chcn Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 20, 2012 8:44 AM (in response to Aixerona)

    Aixerona wrote:


    ... Unless someone knows how this can be resolved when you have no phone carrier, I guess I'm without. SO! Any help would be great.


    I'd wager a pretty large amount that you'll find no workaround to this. The phone needs to send an SMS to Apple to prove that you own that phone number. If you have no phone carrier, you do not own that number. (And, in fact, that number may get reassigned to someone else.) So you will not be reachable by iMessage or Facetime at that number, in the same way that you will not be reachable by telephone at that number.


    But of course people can still iMessage you using your Apple ID (or any other email address that you add under Settings > Messages > Send & Receive > Add Another Email ...).

  • Aixerona Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 20, 2012 8:58 AM (in response to chcn)

    See, that's the problem.  I have it set up to go through my email and apple ID. Yet I still am unable to send or receive anything from anyone via imessage. Even if they are in my contacts and have an iphone/pad/carumba.  Spose that's my cue to donate it to the soldiers Thanks though.

  • chcn Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 20, 2012 12:57 PM (in response to Aixerona)

    Aixerona wrote:


    ... I have it set up to go through my email and apple ID. Yet I still am unable to send or receive anything from anyone via imessage. ...

    Ah, now that's strange. iMessage even works with WiFi-only devices, so it should work using an email address. See

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