Why Does My iPhone 15 Say SOS Only? – Troubleshooting Tips

Have you ever looked at your iPhone 15 and wondered why it’s displaying “SOS only”? You’re not alone. Many iPhone users have encountered this issue, and it can be quite concerning. But don’t worry, there’s usually a simple explanation and solution. In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps to understand why your iPhone 15 says SOS only and how to fix it.

Step by Step Tutorial for Understanding Why Your iPhone 15 Says SOS Only

Before we dive into the steps, it’s important to understand what we’re trying to achieve. The aim is to identify the reason behind the SOS only message and resolve it so that you can get back to using your iPhone 15 as usual.

Step 1: Check Your Network Coverage

First things first, check if you’re in an area with good network coverage.

If your iPhone 15 says SOS only, it could be because you’re in a location with poor or no network coverage. This means your phone can’t connect to your carrier’s network and is only able to make emergency calls. Try moving to a different location with better coverage and see if the message disappears.

Step 2: Ensure Your SIM Card is Activated and Properly Inserted

Make sure your SIM card is active and correctly placed in the phone’s SIM tray.

Sometimes, the SOS only message appears if there’s an issue with your SIM card. It could be that it’s not properly inserted, or it hasn’t been activated by your carrier. Ensure that the SIM card is properly seated in the tray and that it’s been activated.

Step 3: Restart Your iPhone

A simple restart can often fix temporary software glitches.

Like with any electronic device, sometimes your iPhone just needs a quick restart. This can resolve unexpected errors or glitches that may be causing the SOS only message. Hold down the power button, slide to power off, and then turn it back on after a few seconds.

Step 4: Update Your iPhone’s Software

Check if there’s a software update available for your iPhone 15.

Outdated software can sometimes cause network-related issues. Check if there’s an update available and, if so, download and install it. This could fix the SOS only message if it’s due to a software bug.

Step 5: Contact Your Carrier

If all else fails, reach out to your mobile carrier for assistance.

If you’ve tried all the above steps and your iPhone 15 still says SOS only, it’s time to contact your carrier. There might be an issue on their end, or they may need to replace your SIM card.

After completing these steps, your iPhone 15 should no longer display the SOS only message, and you’ll be able to use your phone as normal.

Tips for Avoiding the ‘iPhone 15 Says SOS Only’ Issue

Here are some additional tips to help you avoid encountering the SOS only message on your iPhone 15:

  • Keep your iPhone’s software up to date to prevent bugs and glitches.
  • Always ensure you have good network coverage before making calls.
  • Regularly check that your SIM card is properly inserted and secure in the tray.
  • Avoid exposing your iPhone to extreme temperatures, as this can affect its performance.
  • If you frequently travel, consider getting a roaming plan to avoid network issues.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does ‘SOS only’ mean on my iPhone 15?

‘SOS only’ means that your iPhone can only make emergency calls due to a lack of network coverage or a SIM card issue.

Can I still use my iPhone 15 if it says SOS only?

While your iPhone is in SOS only mode, you can only make emergency calls. You won’t be able to use regular phone functions like calling, texting, or using mobile data until the issue is resolved.

Will restarting my iPhone 15 fix the SOS only message?

Restarting your iPhone 15 can sometimes fix the issue if it’s a temporary glitch. However, if the problem persists, you may need to try the other steps listed in this article.

Is the SOS only message a sign of a serious problem with my iPhone 15?

Not necessarily. The SOS only message is often due to simple issues like poor network coverage or a SIM card that isn’t properly inserted. It’s usually easily fixable.

What if none of the steps fix the SOS only message on my iPhone 15?

If you’ve tried all the steps and the message is still there, it’s best to contact your carrier. They can provide further assistance and check if there’s an issue with your account or SIM card.


  1. Check network coverage
  2. Ensure SIM card is activated and properly inserted
  3. Restart iPhone
  4. Update iPhone’s software
  5. Contact carrier


The dreaded “SOS only” message on your iPhone 15 can be a nuisance, but it’s usually nothing to panic about. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can quickly identify and resolve the issue, whether it’s poor network coverage or a SIM card problem. Remember to keep your iPhone’s software up to date, ensure proper SIM card insertion, and get in touch with your carrier if the problem persists. With these tips in mind, you’ll be back to enjoying your iPhone 15’s features in no time. And if you ever find yourself puzzled by the SOS only message again, just refer back to this guide – it’s here to help you out!

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