A NEW eSIM bug has been randomly deactivating iMessage and FaceTime on iPhones.
The issue was brought to light by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman last week on Twitter.
"There is a very nasty iPhone and TMobile bug where iMessage and FaceTime for a device’s phone number will randomly deactivate and there is no way to reactivate it," Gurman wrote.
Phone lines that utilize eSIMs – a programmable SIM card that is embedded directly into a device – are the ones being affected.
Gurman noted in his Twitter thread that the only solution that worked for him is getting a new physical SIM card.
Some users told Gurman that they had success by removing their eSIM account from their iPhone and setting it up again.
However, the iPhone expert called that method "quite complex for most people" and said it shouldn’t ever need to be done.
He then noted that he personally went directly to his phone carrier (T-Mobile), who was able to activate a physical SIM card for his phone.
Reps at T-Mobile further clarified that many customers have come in with the same issue because Apple hasn't been able to resolve it.
Gurman said that the bug has "for sure" existed on iOS 15.4, 15.5 and 15.6 beta 1.
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"Potentially earlier too, but that’s all I can confirm right now," he said.
Users on Twitter have also confirmed that this issue is not solely a T-Mobile problem.
"Had the exact same issue, but with Verizon. I was using eSIM, and iOS 15.4 legit broke iMessage and FaceTime," one user wrote.
"I had to delete the eSIM and call Verizon to get a new one to fix the iMessage issue. Not a T-Mobile problem, but an iOS 15.4 bug."
The problem does not seem to be limited to iPhone owners in the United States, either.
"This happened with me in India with Airtel. I did every possible thing to activate it but it kept loading and eventually showed could not activate it. Had to swap the sim card and it worked," a second user noted.
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If you find your phone suffering from this bug, then your best bet is to head to your carrier.
From there, explain the issue and they will be able to create a physical sim for your device that should take care of the issue.
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