How to Fix Call Failed on iPhone

Are your calls getting cut off with a ‘call failed’ error on iPhone whilst being unable to receive incoming and outgoing phone calls? 

iPhones have had a lot of problems with calls. Often enough you’d get interrupted with an error that says ‘call failed’ in the middle of, or during, a call. Although the various iOS upgrades have fixed this problem in lots of cases, it’s still common to receive this error.

Despite there being a long list of articles that offer solutions, many fixes can only be found on certain websites that are scattered around other articles. This list combines all the tips that have worked for apple users.

Now instead of contacting Apple customer support and waiting 72 hours for the same response, let’s get over what we can do about your problem now.

Let’s get started.


1. Turn On and Off Airplane Mode.

The easiest solution is often the quickest, which is to toggle the Airplane mode setting on your iPhone on and off. This is a great method to refresh your mobile device from hardware or software problems that can sabotage your calls.

The Airplane mode technique is arguably the most conventional and popular solution that most phone users use when their phone has similar network problems as this.

  1. Swipe up on your screen to access your Control Center.
  2. Next, tap the Airplane icon by the upper-left corner to turn it on.

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. Lastly, after several seconds, tap it again to turn it off. Make sure that Airplane mode is off, which is indicated by the presence of a signal bar at the top left side of your screen.

After this quick-fix, try calling your desired number to see if your call still fails. If the problem remains, you can proceed to the next method to try and fix your calls.


2. Disabling Do Not Disturb.

When we’re busy with work or personal business we prefer to not be disturbed by the vibrations and ringings of our phones. The ‘Do Not Disturb’ is a feature that’s meant to silence calls, vibrations, and most notifications, but it isn’t supposed to block calls. Nonetheless unconnected things like this often mysteriously solve these problems.

To turn off your ‘Do Not Disturb’ status, follow these steps:

  1. Open up your Settings

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. Go to Do Not Disturb and toggle it off.

After turning off this feature, calls and notifications should no longer be filtered by your phone.


3. Dial *#31# or Check your Caller ID.

Chances are your number could be hidden, thereby causing your calls to fail.

The iPhone has a feature that allows users to call other numbers without displaying their caller ID or phone number. This sneaky trick can sometimes compromise your calls and cause them to fail.

To unhide your phone number and show your caller ID, Apple introduced a hidden code on your iPhone that disables your anonymity status on outgoing and incoming calls.

Here’s how you can unhide your phone number:

  1. Firstly, open the Phone app.
  2. Next, tap on the Keypad near the bottom of your screen and enter *#31#.

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. Lastly, press call and that should unhide your phone number.

Alternatively, you can also:

  1. Go into your Settings.
  2. Then, scroll down to find and tap Phone.
  3. Finally, Show My Caller ID should be on your screen, set the button to green.

Call Failed on iPhone

Both solutions will make your phone number accessible to anyone who is trying to contact you and vice versa.


4. Change the Date and Time Settings.

It’s quite common for people to manually set their clocks 15 minutes ahead of time to help them be punctual.

Regardless if you’re that kind of person or not, ‘Date and Time’ settings can often malfunction or glitch randomly.  This is a weird solution, but more often than not unusual fixes like this can solve your problem.

Here’s how you can change your Date and Time Settings:

  1. Go ahead and open your Settings from the home screen.
  2. Then, look for and tap on General.

General Settings on iOS

  1. Now, open Date & Time.
  2. Turn on ‘Set Automatically and configure your Time Zone to your geographical location.

Call Failed on iPhone

Now if your settings are already set to automatic, try to disable and enable ‘Set Automatically’ to refresh your settings. Whether it works or not, reverting to your normal 15-minute advance time settings should not make the calls fail again.


5. Restart Your iPhone.

There are a couple of easier things you can do on this list that involve configuring your settings, but if you’re starting to get impatient and want to take a quick break; restarting your phone will often fix most problems while you’re free to do a quick 5-minute task.

Here’s a series of quick steps to restart your iPhone:

  1. First, hold the power button on your device for several seconds.
  2. Then, a red slider should appear to power off.
  3. Now, swipe it to the right and wait for 20 seconds.
  4. Turn your phone on again by holding the power button.

6. Check for Blocked Numbers.

Blocked numbers will be unable to contact you through texts or calls. Simultaneously, you will also be unable to reach them.

Try to check if you’ve blocked the number you’re trying to contact by following the steps below.

  1. Go ahead and open your Settings.
  2. Next, scroll down to find and tap Phone.
  3. Lastly, access Block Contacts and make sure the number you’re trying to contact isn’t there.

Call Failed on iPhone

If the person or number you’re trying to contact is in the list of blocked contacts, just tap on the number and unblock it. This should have the highest chance of solving your problem.


7. Check If Call Forwarding is Turned On.

‘Call Forwarding’ sets up incoming calls to be redirected to a different number. With call forwarding turned on, any calls towards you will immediately ring on another phone without notifying you.

To check if Call Forwarding is turned on, follow the steps below:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Then, scroll down to find and tap Phone.
  3. Lastly, Tap on Call Forwarding and toggle the switch next to it to turn it off.

Call Failed on iPhone

After this step, all future calls that will try to reach you should start notifying your phone instead of being redirected. If the problem still occurs, you can try doing the next method below.


8. Disable Dial Assist.

Most cellular calls are made in the same region, while international calls are commonly connected through Wi-Fi. Every country has a different prefix (the first two numbers of your phone number, like +44 for the UK). Because of this, whenever you dial a phone number there is an automatically assigned local prefix. This is what ‘Dial Assist’ does.

The automated feature can be a problem when you’re trying to contact someone with a foreign number or a different prefix. By disabling ‘Dial Assist’, it gives you the guarantee that the number you dial is the one that’s going to receive your call.

Here’s how you can disable Dial Assist on your iPhone:

  1. Go ahead and go to Settings.
  2. After that, scroll down to find and tap Phone.
  3. Now toggle off the switch next to Dial Assist.

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. Lastly, restart your phone.

After restarting your phone, dial-in or choose through your contacts the full number of the person you wish to call. Your smartphone should now dial the numbers of your contact without any automated interventions.


9. Carrier Settings Update.

Perhaps your carrier settings are out of date, which might cause an error in your calls.

Just like iOS updates, making sure all your settings are up to date is a great way to manage errors and bugs like this. Updating your carrier settings should only take less than a minute, but speeds vary depending on your Wi-Fi network.

Here’s how you can update your carrier settings:

  1. Firstly, open your Settings.
  2. Next, find and tap General.
  3. Scroll down and tap on About.

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. Finally, if an update is available there should be a clear notification.

However, if the problem still continues, you can proceed to the last few methods to try and fix your call failed problems.


10. Check Your Wi-Fi Calling Options.

‘Wi-Fi Calling’ is a feature that makes your iPhone receive and make calls over a Wi-Fi connection instead of your phone’s cellular network.

This is useful when you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network while simultaneously not having the best cellular reception. However, this can get in the way of making regular cellular calls.

Disabling or enabling this setting has worked for many users. In this step, you’re going to find out what your current settings are and then activate the opposite.

Here are the steps to enable/disable ‘Wi-Fi Calling’:

  1. Go ahead and open your Settings.
  2. After that, scroll down to find and tap Phone.
  3. Next, press Wi-Fi Calling and disable/enable it (whichever is the opposite of the current setting).

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. Lastly, restart your device.

Now your calls should be made entirely through your cellular network or with the help of your Wi-Fi connection.


11. Reset Your Network Settings back to Default.

If there’s nothing wrong with your preferences, then it’s probably with the networks you’re trying to connect to. Resetting your network settings back to its default state may solve the problem.

Giving your network settings a reset does not compromise any personal data except your VPN, Wi-Fi passwords, and cellular settings which are networks your phone gets services from.

We will show you the step-by-step process of resetting your network settings, below:

  1. First, open your Settings.
  2. Find and tap General.
  3. Next, tap on Reset.
  4. Then, press Reset Network Settings.

Reset Network Settings

  1. Lastly, restart your device.

Your networking settings should be reverted back to its default state from when it was produced and should be functioning like factory-quality iPhones.


12. Remove and Reinsert the SIM Card.

A method of its time, the brute force solution of removing and reinserting your SIM card has worked time and time again even before smartphones. In terms of hardware-related problems that could be responsible for your calls failing; adjustments, scratches, damage, or dust on your SIM card could sabotage your cellular experience.

If you’ve never done this before don’t be alarmed, it’s not that difficult and can be done in only a couple of steps.

Here’s how you can remove and reinsert your SIM Card:

  1. On the side of your iPhone, there should be a SIM tray. If you’re wearing a phone case, then you will want to take it off in order to locate it.

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. After finding the tray, use a paper clip or SIM-eject tool to press into the hole. This should eject the SIM tray up a couple of millimetres.
  2. Next, remove the SIM tray with your SIM card inside it.
  3. Then, inspect the SIM card for damages and dust.

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. If you can’t find any scratches you can gently wipe the SIM on a clean and smooth cloth before inserting it back in with the SIM Tray.

This method will clean any direct hardware concerns with your SIM card as well as reset your iPhone’s SIM slot. Any bugs in your iPhone’s connectivity to the SIM will reset and hopefully work like normal.

If all the methods so far haven’t been of any help, perhaps the last two major fixes will solve your problem.


13. Update iOS.

Any iPhone model can start to get bugs and problems if its software is outdated.

Often enough updating your iOS fixes most problems, including failed calls. Because bugs, glitches, and other performances require monthly updates and changes in code; regularly updating your iPhone’s iOS is a great way to avoid most errors and bugs.

Before updating, make sure your phone has more than 40 percent battery life and is connected to a stable Wi-Fi connection. Updating can take as little as 5 minutes to an hour depending on the speed of your Wi-Fi network and hardware of your device.

Here are the steps to update your iOS:

  1. Go ahead and open your Settings.
  2. Next, tap on General.
  3. Now, go to Software Update.

iOS Software Update

  1. If there is an update, simply tap Install Now.

Updating your iOS should ensure that you have the latest operating system for your iPhone. Try to make a call and see if the problem persists.


14. Restore Factory Settings.

If all else fails, it’s possible that your iPhone’s iOS may be corrupted. Usual signs may include but are not limited to:

  1. Malfunctioning of features.
  2. Your iPhone feels considerably slower.
  3. Crashing applications.

Restoring your phone to its factory settings will completely wipe all your data and preferences on your phone. Once you’re done, your smartphone will run just like a new iPhone out of the box. If you’re completely out of options you can always get your phone examined at an Apple Store before considering this step.

Apple Store

Before we proceed with the factory reset, it’s important that we back up all your files to a computer so we can restore them later after the factory reset. This way you won’t lose any personal data at all.

All it takes is roughly 20 minutes to do this, and to get started you’re going to need a PC or a Mac, a stable Wi-Fi connection, and iTunes installed on your computer. Do also make sure that you’ve fully charged your iPhone before starting.

Let’s get started.

Backing up your iPhone.

In this step, we will be backing up all your files to your computer so you can store them in a safe location while we reformat your iPhone.

Here are the necessary steps to backing up all your data:

  1. Launch iTunes on your computer and click on Edit/iTunes at the top left corner (Edit for PC, iTunes for Mac).
  2. Then, move your mouse down to Preferences.

Call Failed on iPhone

  1. Next, open the Devices tab.
  2. After that, turn off Automatic device synchronization.
  3. Connect your iPhone to your computer with a USB or charging cable, your device should appear on iTunes.
  4. Lastly, in the Summary Settings, you should see a Manually Backup and Restore section. Click Backup Now.

Call Failed on iPhone

Your phone should be in the process of backing up all your necessary and important data. We will be restoring your important files later on.

Restoring your iPhone.

Your iPhone will be reformatted which will delete all your files and revert everything back to its factory settings.

Here’s the detailed step-by-step process of restoring your iPhone:

  1. Firstly, connect your iPhone to your computer using a USB or charging cable.
  2. Select your iPhone name/model on iTunes and click Backup Now.
  3. Then, power off your device by holding down the power button and swiping the slider to confirm.
  4. Now, wait for 10-20 seconds. Press and hold the power button.
  5. After 3 seconds hold down the volume down button. You should be pressing down on both the power and volume down button at the same time.
  6. Hold the two buttons down for around 10 seconds or until a pop-up appears on iTunes saying that your device is in ‘Recovery mode’.

Restoring iPhone

  1. Finally, click ‘Restore iPhone…’ and pick a restore date.

Now your iPhone should be completely restored back to its factory settings while still storing all your personal files in its storage.

If all of these steps have failed, it might be in your best interest to look for a nearby Apple Store for assistance instead. Their technicians could help identify a hardware problem that cannot be fixed by just fiddling around your settings.

It’s also worth checking if you qualify for any warranty coverage for your device, which will help discount the service costs.

Now that you have reached the end of this article, we hope that this post helped provide solutions that helped fix your ‘call failed on iPhone’ issue. If you have other questions related to this article, please feel free to leave a comment below. Likewise, if you experience the call failed error with your Apple Watch, then we’ve written a guide on that too. 😀

If this guide helped you, please share it. 🙂


  • Mako Young

    Mako is a staff writer at Saint. He's been writing about tech for more than a decade. When he isn't reading about the latest news on Apple, he's busy studying cybersecurity, cryptocurrency, cloud computing, and other IT-related sectors. His exceptional work graces technology and Apple-related blogs like How-To Geek,, Macgasm, onMac, PhotoWorkout, GameRant, and many more. He also has a Bachelors in Computer Science and has been writing since 2018, with over 400 posts published. LinkedIn X (Twitter)

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