How to Activate a New iPhone

There’s nothing better than that feeling of unboxing a new iPhone. However, if you are setting up either a used a new iPhone, you’ll need to activate it to get cell service. The good news is that activation is part of the initial phone setup and should only take you a few moments. But you do an activated sim card in order to use it. Nonetheless, sometimes activation can be tricky. That’s why we’ve put together this guide for you on how to activate new iPhones quickly and easily. You’ll be able to troubleshoot any problems and work around issues so you can have your iPhone up and running in no time.

How to Activate a New iPhone in a Few Steps

iPhone SIM card tray

Most of the time, it should be very simple for you to activate an iPhone. If you’ve bought the phone new at an Apple Store, cellular provider, or major retailers, it’s likely you already have a Sim Card installed.

If it is not, however, you’ll have to do insert the SIM card. Power the phone off then eject the SIM card tray.

  1. Place the SIM Card in the tray and insert it back into the phone.
  2. Do note, you must have an activated SIM card from your chosen cell provider. If you’ve bought a locked phone, note you won’t be able to use a Sprint SIM Card in a phone locked to Verizon only. In this case, you’ll need to follow steps on how to unlock your phone instead. 
  3. After this, turn on your phone wait until the Apple logo appears.
  4. Follow the setup process through the instructions provided on-screen.
  5. Apple will prompt you for a connection option—either Wi-Fi or your telecom provider. You can either configure your Wi-Fi network or simply activate over data.
  6. Apple will prompt you to sign in with your Apple ID. This security is Activation Lock used to deter theft. If you’ve bought this phone new, you’ll have no problems signing in. If your iPhone is used, you may need the original owner to sign in so you can finish the setup. You can easily change the Apple ID later. Be sure to disable activation lock if you plan to sell your iPhone.
  7. Depending on your data connection speed and phone model, your phone should be ready to go within a few minutes.

Finish the Activation Process

To wrap up how to activate a new iPhone, you’ll have a few options.

  • Choose setup as a new device if you want the quickest and easiest option. You’ll have an absolutely clean phone with no data or apps installed.
  • Select restore apps and data from iCloud if you want to transition between devices. Be sure to select your most recent backup to make sure you have everything.
  • If you don’t use iCloud, you can restore apps and data from an iTunes backup. Connect your iPhone to the computer with the USB cable. Then select restore iPhone. Note, this feature may not be accessible on newer phones or iTunes.
  • If you are migrating from Android to Apple, you can use Apple’s Move to iOS app to sync a lot of your old data fairly easily.

What Can’t I activate iPhone?

Sometimes, you may experience activating a new or old iPhone. Here’s what to do if you run into these problems.

No Sim Card Installed

No Sim Card Installed

If your iPhone shows a “no SIM card installed” message, you’ll need to make sure your SIM card is compatible with your phone plan and iPhone. If it is, you may just need to power the phone off and ensure the card is properly seated in the SIM tray. After this insert the tray again and power back on the phone. If it isn’t compatible, speak to your cellular provider about what options you have. Most of the time, they should be able to transfer your SIM card although you may have to go to a store or wait a few days.

Check Activation Status

You can actually check if your phone has been successfully activated or not. Visit the Apple System Status website and check to see there is a green dot next to “iOS Device Activation.” If you don’t see one, you’ll need to try activating again.

Connection Issues

Sometimes, you may not be able to activate over a cellular data connection. This can be due to poor service or bandwidth restrictions. If you are having issues, try activating over a Wi-Fi connection instead.

Still Having Problems With Activation?

iPhone Activation issues

Activating your iPhone should be one of the easiest steps when it comes to configuring a new phone. However, you might still run into problems for a variety of reasons. If this is the case, you’ll need to contact your telecom service provider along with Apple. In some cases, you may have a locked sim card to a specific phone or another issue. And in very rare instances, Apple may just need to replace your iPhone with a new one. Whatever the case, they’ll be able to sort you out and you up and running in no time! 

And after you’ve successfully transitioned to a new iPhone, make sure you get the best value for your old iPhone by selling to Buyback Boss. Buyback Boss offers the highest phone resale value guaranteed. And with Buyback Boss, selling your phone is easy. Click here to get an instant quote on your phone. Then print out your free shipping label and you’ll receive either a PayPal deposit or a check in the mail in as little as a few days. It’s that easy. So what are you waiting for? Check it out now!

For all things Apple and iPhone, head on over to our blog. Here you can pick up a wide array of tips such as how to transfer contacts between Android and iPhone, what to do if apps won’t update, and much more.With all these great Apple articles, you’ll become an iPhone expert before you know it!