iPhone Won’t Activate Verizon (Why + Potential Fixes)

If you’ve just purchased an iPhone, or are bringing it over to Verizon from another carrier, you might be wondering why the iPhone won’t activate.

Well, continue reading to find out what I’ve discovered as the most common causes of troubles with activating an iPhone on Verizon, and how to fix the issue!

Why Won’t My iPhone Activate Verizon In [currentyear]?

If you have trouble activating your iPhone with Verizon, it could be due to numerous issues, such as if you still have Find My Phone enabled on your old Apple device, or it could be caused by a SIM card issue, such as needing an eSIM for the new iPhone and not a physical SIM card in [currentyear].

Do you want to know more details about why your iPhone won’t activate on Verizon, and how to fix additional causes? If so, keep reading to learn how to quickly fix this issue!

1. Find My Phone Is Still Activated

If you’re upgrading your iPhone on Verizon, you’ll need to make sure that you’ve turned Find My Phone off on your old device before trying to activate your new iPhone.

2. Old iPhone Is Still On

You cannot activate an iPhone on Verizon if you still have your old iPhone turned on, so you’ll need to turn off the old iPhone before starting the activation process on Verizon.

3. SIM Card May Be Wrong 

Swapping out a SIM card from your old phone may not work if you’re trying to activate one of the new 5G iPhone devices, since it’s likely not provisioned for the Verizon 5G network.

Therefore, if you’ve purchased your 5G device from Verizon, you need to leave in the 5G SIM card that was preinstalled in the device.

4. Wi-Fi Network Is Not Available

A lot of people try to activate their iPhone through Wi-Fi, but might not realize that the Wi-Fi network isn’t available or active on the device.

To fix this issue, simply ensure that the new iPhone is connected to the Wi-Fi network before trying to activate the device.

5. Outside of the Verizon LTE Coverage Area

Instead of activating over Wi-Fi, you might be trying to activate your device over the cellular network, but did you know it won’t activate if you’re outside of the Verizon LTE coverage area?

Therefore, you’ll either need to move to a location within the Verizon LTE network to activate your iPhone over Cellular, or choose to activate over Wi-Fi instead to complete the process.

6. IMEI Number Needed

There are times when your iPhone won’t activate, and it could be because Verizon needs the IMEI number.

Furthermore, customers have reported that they called Verizon Customer Service, and gave the representative the IMEI number, and then the phone activated properly.

7. Need to Restart Device to Activate

7. Need to Restart Device to Activate Verizon

Some people have issues activating their iPhone on Verizon, because they didn’t restart their device, so turning the phone off and back on can solve this problem in certain situations.

8. Device Isn’t Charged

While it might seem like an obvious reason why your iPhone won’t activate on Verizon, one cause of this issue is that the iPhone isn’t charged.

Therefore, before you try to activate your device, you should charge it to ensure that it has enough power to go through the complete activation process.

9. iPhone 13 Purchased From Apple

If you’ve purchased your iPhone 13 from Apple, then you’re going to need to activate the eSIM, since it doesn’t have a 5G SIM card installed.

10. IMEI 2 Not Activated for eSIM

If you have a new iPhone with an eSIM, whether from Apple or another source, you’ll need to enter the IMEI 2 to activate the device on Verizon, and a lot of customers are unaware of this.

To fix this issue, customers have reported that you can go into the My Verizon website, then select “My Devices,” and from there, activate the line by entering the IMEI 2 number.

11. Software Needs to Be Updated

You can activate your iPhone through iTunes, but you need to ensure the iTunes software is updated before trying to activate the device, or else it might not work.

Therefore, you’ll need to go into iTunes and look for updates to the software before beginning the activation process.

12. SIM Not Properly Installed

SIM cards can create a lot of problems if not installed properly, and could be the reason your iPhone won’t activate on Verizon.

To fix this issue, all you need to do is pull your SIM card out, wait for a second, and put it back into the iPhone, ensuring that the connector on the SIM card lines up with the inside of the slot.

13. eSIM Isn’t Disabled If Using Physical SIM

Your iPhone may not activate on Verizon if you’re using a physical SIM card but haven’t disabled the eSIM.

Furthermore, you’ll need to turn off your device, install the physical SIM card, disable the eSIM, and then turn your device off and back on, and it should activate.

To know more, you can also read our posts on whether or not Verizon fix phone screens, do Verizon phones have sim cards, and is Verizon CDMA or GSM.


Several issues could be causing your iPhone not to activate on Verizon, such as if you’re using a physical SIM and you need to be using an eSIM, or your SIM card isn’t installed properly.

Additionally, if you’re trying to activate over Cellular, and you’re not within the Verizon LTE coverage area, you’ll need to choose Wi-Fi instead. However, if you have tried the above methods, and still can’t get your iPhone to activate, it’s best to call Verizon Customer Service for further guidance on the problem.

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Florence Howard

Florence Howard has been freelance writing for over a decade, and has a vocational background in retail, tech, and marketing. Outside of work, she enjoys listening to rock and metal, and playing with her dog and cat.

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