When trying to make an important call, the Cellular Network Not Available error can be quite frustrating. AndroidOS and iOS devices can be affected by the error. Typically, this error indicates a problem with cellular service or software. However, it can also indicate a hardware problem.
What causes this error? What can you do to fix it? We will walk you through everything you need to know when your device is unable to make phone calls due to a Cellular Unavailable error.
Table of Contents
What Causes the Cellular Unavailable Error?
Your smartphone will likely not be able to make or receive calls if you see the error on it. Without WiFi, you may not be able to receive texts or access the internet. It doesn’t always affect SMS or Data activity, but sometimes it does, and this is quite telling.
If you don’t have cellular service at all, it could be as simple as there is no connection where you are. When traveling to a new area, check your carrier’s coverage map. You may be too far away from the nearest tower (or the tower may be blocked by the terrain) to receive a good signal.
Region-wide outages can also cause a smartphone to lose its cellular signal. By typing your carrier’s name into the Down Detector website, you can check for this issue quickly. Here you will find outage reports for your area.
Last but not least, hardware damage can cause issues with calling. A part of the motherboard may be damaged if your device has been physically or liquid damaged. A corroded internal component may be causing a loss of function even if the damage occurred a long time ago.
However, if making phone calls is the only problem, there is another issue altogether. We’ll cover that in more detail below.
In the following sections, we’ve listed the most common solutions. It is common for the inability to make and receive phone calls to resolve itself. In case it doesn’t, there are some other options.
Check Airplane Mode
Make sure that it’s not just Airplane mode that’s preventing you from making calls before taking any further steps. You can check this by going to your Home screen and swiping down. Make sure Airplane mode is disabled by tapping the Airplane icon.
Select a Network Operator
When you travel abroad, your smartphone changes network operators. In many phones, the network operator search is set to automatic by default, but some advanced users prefer to disable this setting and perform the search manually. In the second case, you might have forgotten to select an operator or the phone won’t let you because it cannot update its location.
In any case, you might want to set your phone to automatically search for a network. On most Android devices, here’s how to do it.
- Tap “Connections” in the “Settings” menu.
- Look for “Mobile networks.”
- “Network operators” should be entered.
- Select “Select automatically.”
By power cycling your computer, you may be able to resolve your issue, as it resets and reestablishes your connection with your network provider. If your phone’s battery is removable, this is a good way to fix glitches. In order to power cycle your device, you must turn it off, remove the SIM card, and remove the battery. Don’t forget to do this as carefully as you can.
Fix the Radio Signal
It is possible that your radio signal is not broadcasting correctly. You can fix this problem by following these steps.
- Call ##4636#*#* from your phone. Despite the fact that this is not considered a phone call, you can still dial it.
- When entered correctly, the number will take you to the testing menu. Select “Phone information” (or “Device information”).
- Click “Run ping test.”
- Scroll down until you see the dropdown menu for “Set preferred network type”. Look for the small arrow on the right if you can’t find it easily.
- From the list, select “GSM Auto (PRL).
- You can turn off the radio by tapping the “Turn off radio” button.
- If the problem persists, reboot your device.
Update Your Device
Many operating system problems can be solved by performing a system update. If you think the OS is to blame, try updating it. The actual location may vary depending on the model, but the general process remains the same.
- Go to the Settings section of your phone.
- Locate the “About device” or “About phone” option. Many phones have it under the “System” tab.
- Tap the “Software update” option. There may be an option directly under the “System” tab on some devices.
- Check for updates by tapping “Check for updates.”
- Install a newer OS version if it is available.
Perform a Factory Reset
A factory reset may also solve OS-related problems if your device’s OS is already up-to-date. Backup important data beforehand since this clears all your phone settings, apps, and sometimes even personal files. In order to perform a factory reset, follow these steps:
- Select “Settings.”
- Go to the “Backup and Reset” menu. Although the menu name may vary, it should contain the word “backup”.
- You can perform a factory data reset whenever you feel ready.
Reach Out to Your Carrier
In the event that all else fails, you may need to contact your cell phone carrier. There may be a mass outage. The SIM card needs to be replaced, or you need to get a new one. Reps can sometimes resend the Over-the-Air activation, refreshing your SIM card and resolving the error.
Frequently Asked Questions
You should be able to make calls again after turning your phone off and on again if you have recently traveled. When we return from a trip, our phones sometimes fail to recognize local cell phone towers. Make sure Airplane mode isn’t on if that doesn’t work.
You should then contact your phone provider. After returning, you may need a new SIM card or the company can help you restart your service.
Keeping in Touch
A missing network can be a minor bug that disappears on its own. In any case, try each of these solutions one by one if that is not the case. You should be able to find at least one that works for you.
Have you ever had network problems before? How did you solve this problem? Comment below and let us know what you think!