SOS on iPhone: What Does it Mean and How to Fix it

What does SOS mean on iPhone?

Discovering the SOS message on your iPhone may raise concerns, but don’t worry, it doesn’t indicate the accidental triggering of an emergency alert. The SOS symbol appears in the status bar, replacing the typical cellular connection indicator.

This signifies a loss of proper cellular connectivity and restricts your options to make emergency calls or send texts to emergency services.

SOS only on an iPhone

On older iPhone models like the iPhone 13, if you completely lose SOS service, it will shift to displaying “No service.” However, with the introduction of satellite SOS capability on iPhone 14 and newer models, encountering this message is unlikely unless you’re engaging in extreme activities like spelunking or deep-sea diving.

How can you fix the SOS issue on your iPhone?

SOS meaning on an iPhone

The simplest solution is to move to an area with a stronger cellular signal. However, if you’re in a known connected area and still facing the issue, it’s possible that your phone isn’t accurately registering the connection. In such cases, you can follow these steps:

  1. Swipe down from the upper-right corner of your iPhone’s display to access the Control Center.
  2. Tap on the green Cellular Data icon to turn it off, and then tap it again to turn it back on. This may help jog your iPhone’s memory and establish a proper connection.
  3. If the previous step doesn’t resolve the issue, you can perform a soft reset. Simply hold down the side button and the lower volume button simultaneously for about 3 seconds. This will bring up a new screen with two sliders and a cancel icon.
  4. Slide the top power icon to the right to power down your phone. Wait for a few seconds, and then hold the side button to power it back up again.

Once your iPhone restarts, it should search for a cellular connection in the vicinity. If you’re within range, your phone should successfully establish a connection and remove the SOS indicator from the status bar.

Remember, SOS on your iPhone is an indication of a temporary loss of cellular connectivity, and following the troubleshooting steps mentioned above should help you resolve the issue.