Repair Needed: iPhone Cannot Make or Receive Calls [updated]

Repair Needed: iPhone Cannot Make or Receive Calls [updated] 1

It’s the iPhone dialog box you’ve hopefully never seen before: “Repair Needed. iPhone cannot make or receive calls.” If it had happened only once this week to someone I’d bought an iPhone for, I would have totally written it off. But twice? What are the odds?


My wife has been traveling for the past week and a half, and had this message come up on her after several days of iPhone flakiness, in which the phone’s ringer stopped working, then the phone failed altogether. Her experience? She’s lucky enough to be in a city with an Apple Store, where though it wasn’t convenient to give up part of her day for the appointment, the unit was replaced on the spot. Not bad at all. Her only complaint: she lost her photos and other content that hadn’t been synchronized to her computer.

Yesterday, a friend who’s visiting from out of town told me that his iPhone—bought by me for him as a gift—wasn’t holding a charge properly. Last night, the phone said that it needed to be reactivated in iTunes. Then the battery completely died. When it was recharged, the Repair Needed screen came up. “Have I lost all my photos?” he wondered. I suggested that he sync with his Mac and find out. Though iTunes wouldn’t work—he got a message saying that “the SIM card is not installed”—iPhoto saw his pictures and let him pull them off, which would have been good for my wife to know: you can try to recover the iPhone’s contents before taking it in. My friend’s appointment with the local Apple Store is today, so we’ll see how that goes.



A few points: neither of these phones was ever (and I mean ever) Jailbreaked, modified, or attempted to be Jailbreaked or modified. Both were upgraded from Apple’s own iTunes updater from software version 1.0 to 1.0.1 to 1.0.2 and 1.1.1. The first one was purchased and activated in the first week of the iPhone’s release, which is to say that it was around 3.5 months old when it failed. The second one was delivered roughly a month after the iPhone was released, which is to say that it was 2.5 months old. Neither one was misused or mishandled. And both my wife and my friend have mid-line Core 2 Duo Apple MacBook computers, which they were using for charging around the time the iPhones experienced problems.

I know that these people aren’t the first two to see this error message; readers, have you experienced this, and under what sort of conditions?

[Update: We visited an Apple Store, which rapidly replaced the iPhone. Overheard during the repair: as of 11:30AM, 6 iPhones had apparently been replaced today with similar symptoms. Sounds like a 1.1.1 firmware problem to me.]

  1. Hi I can receive calls but cannot make calls. I did no get my iphone from an appe store……its been updated and i updated it with cynia/cyga something like that. I was having issues with it cutting out while in conversation.

    Now cannot make calls after this upload of updates from this iconw hicvh appeared on my phone

  2. I thought I should also add to my above post that I don’t get the error message that others get. I have full signal and every other function works properly. I can try to call my phone from another one and it doesn’t even ring, but when I turn 3G off it will go right through.

  3. ***********************************************

    *****I would recommend doing the below as a last resort, just incase your Iphone does completely pack up!*****

    After 28 hours of trying literly everything, I managed to fix my 1.1.4 jail broken unlocked Iphone that had the (REPAIR NEEDED) message.

    This might work on untouched Iphones with the same problem. Please remember this is done at your own risk as it was mine.


  4. Hi I am using the Iphone 3G with Tmobile. I unlocked and Jailbroke it and have had several issues. Firstly 3G has to be switched off for your sim card to even be recognized, Secondly data roaming has to be on in order for you to use any data services and thirdly, I could not make or receive calls so uninstalled Kate(an app in installer) and now my phone works perfectly) hope this helps

  5. What is happened? I had this problem too, and i have to change the board logic, because it always failed to upgrade the firmware? Does apple sell some defected product?

    My iphone : 3G factory unlock Italy.

    Thanks, from Jakarta, Indonesia

  6. Hi, I have the same problem of Repair needed error, tried restoring & it goes all the way & then gives error 1002 at the last mile. Yes mine is a jailbroken iphone 3G, thats the only way it can work here. 🙁 any tips for me — other than taking it to apple store as I live in Doha, Qatar in the middle east and there are no apple stores in this part of the world.

  7. If iphone is unlocked and jailbroken and UNABLE TO MAKE OUTCALLS :

    Step-1 Go to Installer >Utilities and find application name KATE .. Tap on KATE and on top right hit UNINSTALL.

    Step-2—settings>general>reset>reset all settings.

    Step 3—After that POWER OFF your iphone.Wait 2 mins and restart.It will work fine after a short while.

  8. Wow—same thing here. Just like how the author had said his friend’s iPhone stopped working..samething for mine. Was low on battery, so I plugged it in, then it said the iPhone needs to be reactivated in iTunes…though ok will do that then, plug it in and iTunes says “cannot be used with iTunes because the SIM….” so clicked OK then did a hard reset (in DFU mode) iTunes picks it up, restores back to 2.2.1 but gives an error code, (1013) and same process appears again & again……taking it to the App Store today and let’s see what they do…

    iPhone 3G FW2.2.1
    AT&T;[Jailbroken via QuickPWN]

  9. Well unlike you guys and girls, I am having a different issue. I cant make or recieve calls.. but my data and TXT messaging flows just fine. Called the Iphone support they had me reset my network settings and then turn off the 3g without luck. Had me restart the phone like 4 times in hopes of that fixing this issue(thought that this wasnt a microsoft product). All so she could tell me that I needed to go to an Apple Store in Houston and they will work with it? WOW… What a new experience!

  10. My 3G did the same thing to me, it was like that for a whole day, I was so frustrated.
    I just kept trying differnet things and finally I unplugged my mouse and plugged in the wire there, and it started to work!

  11. I have the same exact problem as xBladex (number 60)… I’ve managed to get my icons back up but I still have “restore needed: cannot make or receive calls. Restore from iTunes…” no wifi no 3g no network no signal. qwkpwn//pwnagetool. I’m on 2.2.1 idk what my baseband is, apple store told me it was the problem but it wasnt their problem, I’m on ATT, I just bought my phone around New Years

  12. got the “repair needed iphone cannot make or receive calls” message. Restored iphone with latest itunes. worked briefly, then same message. Restored again, worked briefly, then same message. I tried turning it on and off. Worked for a few minutes, then same message. Restored again. If I get the same message again, I am taking it to the Apple Store.

  13. Hey i have the I phone 3G and I hacked it and am using it with T mobile. I has worked great for like 2 weeks then all of the sudden it wouldn’t allow incoming calls! I can make calls and text just fine! the wifi also works just fine! I turned it on and off a couple of times took the sim card out and put it back in and it still wont work! any suggestions??

  14. Hi,same problem here…


    To days ago I updated my iPhone 2G (EDGE) with firmware 3.1 Beta 3. Then I jailbreak it with iH8sn0w. After that my iPhone recovered from jailbreak process and start freezing and loosing the GSM signal. I restored it back to 3.0 and jailbreak again. Since then my iPhone displays “NO SERVICE” and “Repair needed. iPhone cannot make or receive calls.”

    . I made downgrade even until 1.1.1. version. I downloaded the Baseband until 04.02.13_G modem firmware. I tried all those possibilities, but my iphone is showing NO SERVICE.
    My iPhone was bought with 1.1.2 (04.02.13_G modem firmware) version.

    Please help me in this case because you’re my last chance.

    Thank you very much.

  15. You guys need to unlock your phone because when you update the software it locks again and will only recognize one network which is AT&T so find someone who can unlock your phone and it should work again!

  16. I use AT&T. I haven’t done any jailbreak or anything with my phone. The error message popped up that I need to restore. I plugged in to itunes and clicked restore, and at the VERY end of the process, it says an unknown error has occurred (1013). Now I can’t do anything with my phone and itunes says it’s in a ‘recovery state’ and needs to be restored… iPhones are ridiculous and I’m never buying one again. I have the 3GS, this is my fourth iPhone. The first one was broken when I took it out of the box. They would be really nice phones if they didn’t have to be replaced 18 times per year. I had an HTC before this and I’m going to get another one. I had it for about 4 years and nothing ever went wrong with it. For anyone thinking about getting one, don’t. They’re all show and totally not worth the hassle. Although Tap tap revenge is a frigging amazing game. Just sayin.

  17. Dear all, greetings from india, i have an iphone with the 3.1.3 version, i started facing this issue, that mostly my network seems to be searching and i cannot recieve/make calls, i tried changing the sim to different service provider, but all in vain, also i found out that even if a single bar from my network is less i am not able to do anything….is it a hardware issue??

  18. Hi, I have a 16gb 3gs Iphone, and a few weeks ago my iphone said that it needed to be hooked up to itunes to be restored, but it wouldnt restore after about 16 attempts. I just keep getting error 1002. I have also brought it to the local AT&T store where they also tried to restore it, but got the same error. I dont live near an Apple store, so can anyone help me fix this problem PLEASSSEE!

  19. I have same problem with my iPad. Unfortunately I don’t live near any apple store so i have to send it back in the states. I tried connecting it in iTunes but still the problem wasn’t resolved. I hope you could help me. Thanks!

  20. Ok, so today i decided to unlock my phone to any sim.. Great it work it now takes my VIRGIN sim card which has free internet on it free texts etc.. But theres a problem… It allows me on WI-FI, allows me on 3G internet from my sim, Allows me on PINGCHAT, Even says VIRGIN in the top left corner with my full signal bar… So the problem?? The phone wont let me SEND or RECEIVE texts and calls at the moment?? Ive tried everything?? Any ideas people?? Isit due to settings which allow out and incoming calls?? Have i got to restore it?? I have no idea what to do, its given me a headache trying everything PLEASE HELP MEEEEEEE!!

  21. I went to a website, entered login information… lost service in a high service area, turned airplane mode on and off quickly as to search for service again.. iphone still had no service.. reset it.. when it turned on it said ” Restore Needed – iPhone cannot make or receive calls. Restore from iTunes. ” – I am going to go home and try to restore this thing… all while trying to avoid losing everything to hurricane Irene.. I have to go home and grab my personal documents, clothing, and belongings…. and do this before my computer is wrecked.. please pray for me and my loved ones.

  22. My iphone 4 will not turn on without it plugged into the wall (computer boots it up to the apple logo, then turns back off; repeatedly) and when it is plugged into the wall it brings up “iphone cannot make or recieve calls, restore using iTunes”… well the computer wont turn it on and it looses power once unplugged.. I cant figure out anything about this… guess im going to haave to take it to plano – nearest apple store – and get it replaced?
    This is crap though, i was using it all day and then around 5 it just died for no reason and i got home and this is what ive found out so far.. ive had it over a year and no problems till now.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *