iPhone 7 purchased overseas & Facetime (A Warning)

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by hawkeye_a, May 3, 2017.

  1. hawkeye_a macrumors 6502a


    Jun 27, 2016
    A friend of mine, transiting via Dubai's international airport recently, decided to pick up an iPhone from Dubai duty free. I was trying to get FaceTime up and running for him, and couldn't download the app for some reason.

    Researching the issue, I came across this little nugget of information:

    He has a SIM from a country not mentioned in the link above(obviously), and his iTunes account is set to a country which has the FaceTime app.

    So, a word of warning to those considering buying iPhones/iPods/iPads in the places mentioned in the link above and hoping to use FaceTime.

  2. eyoungren macrumors P6


    Aug 31, 2011
    Phoenix • 85037
    Nothing new, although this is the first time I've seen a support document.

    Periodically, the MR forums will get someone through here trying to activate FT on a device purchased in these countries.

    It's not possible.
  3. Newtons Apple macrumors P6

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Yep, Apple had to jump though some "hoops" to even get permission to sell iphones in places like the UAE.
  4. avanpelt macrumors 68030

    Jun 2, 2010
    This is interesting. While I knew about this issue, I always figured that once an iPhone was physically out of the handful of countries that disallow FaceTime (even if said iPhone was purchased in one of those countries), FaceTime would be able to be used. I learned something new today. Thanks, OP!
  5. dontwalkhand macrumors 601


    Jul 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
  6. eyoungren macrumors P6


    Aug 31, 2011
    Phoenix • 85037
    Islam is the official religion in the UAE. Think about it.
  7. omeryounos macrumors newbie

    Apr 19, 2012
    Ha ha seriously... get some logic in...there are tens of Muslim countries where FaceTime works...
  8. se95dah macrumors member

    Dec 30, 2014
    I relocated from the Middle East to Europe last year and since my wife and I had both bought iPhones while living out there I did my own testing on this. There are at least two different versions on sale in the Middle East at the moment. Model AE only allows FaceTime if it is specifically activated by the carrier bundle (I.e. FaceTime is removed if you use a sim from outside the region). Model AH does allow FaceTime with a sim from outside the region, with no restrictions. I saw both AE and AH on sale next to each other in the same shops (in both 6S and SE). The model number is marked on the back of the box, so you can check before buying.

    I tested the above using a variety of international SIM cards and iPhones. Based on our findings I sold my iPhone 6 (model AE) before relocating and kept my wife's iPhone SE (model AH). 9 months later (and after several iOS updates) her phone still works 100% on a local sim in Europe including FaceTime.
  9. Adhi Krishnamurti macrumors newbie

    Adhi Krishnamurti

    Nov 3, 2017
    I have the AH/A iPhone SE, I'm looking around the websites to find out where this guy came from. I couldn't find info about AH/A. and I saw your post that saying its from the Middle East but it's like the "general" version that sold on that region. I saw Arabic on the back of the box but wondering why the FaceTime is allowed and the camera sound can be muted. Thank you for your information.

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