Some New iPhone X Owners Facing Activation Issues [Updated]

MacRumors

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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The iPhone X is now widely available across the United States, but some new iPhone X owners aren't able to start using their new phones due to carrier activation issues and congestion.

On the MacRumors forums, a number of AT&T users are complaining about activation problems, and there are also reports of activation issues on Twitter and reddit. Some AT&T customers are seeing long wait times for the activation process before it eventually fails with an error message.

Image via MacRumors reader William​

The issue appears to be due to heavy congestion with so many new devices being released into the wild at once. Several of our readers have been able to get the activation process to work after multiple attempts, while others have gotten it to work after a restart or via iTunes. From MacRumors reader anthonymoody:
I called Apple. As another person posted, they had me shut down (hold the large button right side, then swipe to shut down) and restart (hold large button right side). It still didn't work. Told me to call AT&T, which I did. They confirmed their servers are slammed but gave me the automated activation phone number. I called it, system said it was activated (!) But still no joy on the phone itself.

I swapped SIMs with my prior phone...still no joy.

Connected to iTunes and after having to restart the process several times owed to errors (guessing servers getting slammed) I was FINALLY able to get it going - in fact it update to 11.1 and restored from an iOS 11.1 back up in one shot.
While most of the reports seem to be coming from AT&T users, there are also scattered reports from Verizon customers who are seeing activation problems.

Unfortunately, there appears to be no fix at this time beyond waiting or attempting the activation process over and over again. The problem should start to clear up later today as the servers become less crowded, but Apple and/or affected carriers may also be able to implement some kind of fix.

We'll update this post should we hear reports of the congestion clearing up.

Update: Verizon says that customers who purchased a Verizon iPhone X are not experiencing activation issues, but we have heard some reports from Verizon users who are indeed having problems. Verizon activation issues do not seem to be as prevalent as AT&T activation issues, though.

Update: AT&T says the activation problem is fixed. AT&T's statement: "Some of our customers experienced a delay activating their iPhone X. The issue was not specific to our customers and is resolved."

Article Link: Some New iPhone X Owners Facing Activation Issues [Updated]
 

840quadra

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 1, 2005
8,091
3,384
Twin Cities Minnesota
Sadly Some of them are rushing to activate so they can resell their devices.

Hopefully this clears up soon. No doubt has to be frustrating to those waiting to play with their new device on launch day.

Many, if not all having this issue. Good job Apple.
Since it appears that it impacts AT&T Users more (No surprise here, their AW3 Launch day activations were a disaster), I doubt it has much to do with Apple.
 

Dougntosh

macrumors newbie
Nov 20, 2015
4
2
Detroit
no problems on activating on at&t. Just had to do another back up to get the restore to work. Im guessing because not all the apps are updated yet. So do not do the app back ups and everything worked. Be ready to wait about an hour or more to set up your apple watch to!
 

powermt

macrumors newbie
Oct 20, 2014
4
0
No AT & T activation issues for me. I walked into Best Buy @ 10, purchased my phone (no reservation) and was activated by 10:30. If you're looking for a phone today, check your local Best Buy that has an Apple presence. None of the AT & T stores had phones in stock.
 

Cory Bauer

macrumors 6502a
Jun 26, 2003
597
207
My iPhone X showed up about a half-hour ago, and I've been staring at this error ever since. iTunes just shows a blank screen that says, "iPhone"; at one point it loaded an AT&T screen where I could enter my zip and social but after clicking "continue" it never went anywhere.
 
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Cabbagetoe

macrumors newbie
Oct 27, 2017
2
2
I called Verizon. They stated this is failing because you haven't turned 'Find my iPhone' off on your previous device. If you try to activate a new phone with FMI turned on with the previous, you'll see these issues. Try turning Find My iPhone off before you activate the new phone or you'll have to call your provider after you turn it off and have them resend the activation request to your phone.
 

GTPprix

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2013
85
12
Two hours of trying various methods.... this is not quite my idea of fun ;) I'll just keep swimming....
 

Goaliegeek

macrumors 6502a
Apr 13, 2009
564
203
Colorado
I activated mine after connecting to wifi. Celluar wouldn't work. I've already activated it twice. (tried to start fresh, but some things wont work, like my Apple Watch, so I guess Ill restore from a back up...)
 

alent1234

macrumors 603
Jun 19, 2009
5,654
122
I called Verizon. They stated this is failing because you haven't turned 'Find my iPhone' off on your previous device. If you try to activate a new phone with FMI turned on with the previous, you'll see these issues. Try turning Find My iPhone off before you activate the new phone or you'll have to call your provider after you turn it off and have them resend the activation request to your phone.

interesting. I was playing around on Best Buy's site a few days ago for upgrade options and the site seemed to know if my FMI was turned on and wouldn't advance to the next step
 

nvmls

macrumors 6502a
Mar 31, 2011
672
1,623
Just pre-order your activation, should be available in the upcoming weeks™
 
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Ericbss7

macrumors newbie
Jul 8, 2013
10
8
Picked my pre-order up in store. Had them activate it but passed on the personal setup. Worked fine. Having issues restoring my iCloud backup, getting an 'Error looking up account info", but I think it has more to do with security on my work's wifi. I expect it to work once I get home.
 

OldSchoolMacGuy

Suspended
Jul 10, 2008
4,202
8,906
Mine failed the first try. Then asked if I wanted to try again using wifi or LTE. Did the wifi option and it activated without issue.
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Wow, that notch is really noticeable. First photo of an iPhone not curated by Apple and it really stands out, huh?
Meh, it gets the time, battery, and wifi out of the way so you have even more screen real estate. You may notice it now but like anything, you won't even notice it after a couple days of use and love the extra screen you get.