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What Is Meant By “SIM Not Provisioned”?

Your SIM card lets you make calls and have access to mobile internet by identifying certain information on the mobile network. The information enables identifying your SIM card account. However, at times you may encounter a problem that displays “SIM not provisioned”. It means that your SIM card is not provisioned and is not able to share the information between your mobile device and the network provider.

In most cases, this problem arises for new SIM card users. There can also be instances when you transfer contacts or the network provider server is unavailable. Often, it may happen when the SIM card is placed incorrectly or when the SIM slot is damaged. Hardware and software bugs can even lead to the SIM not provisioned error.

Another possibility of a “SIM not provisioned” error is when the network provider blocks your SIM card. When you happen to use the SIM card in an unsupported location, you may encounter the said problem.

How To Fix “SIM Not Provisioned”?

Method 1. Turn on Airplane Mode

The first method will be to cut off the network in your phone and then bring it back. You can do it by enabling Airplane Mode. When you turn on Airplane Mode, there will be no connection and there will be no access to the cellular network and mobile internet. It helps to create a fresh connection and prevent the “SIM not provisioned” error.

Enabling Airplane Mode on Android

Step 1: Swipe down the main screen.

Step 2: Click “Quick Settings.”

Step 3: Select “Airplane Mode.”

Step 4: Wait for a few seconds.

Step 5: Repeat the process again to disable Airplane Mode.

Airplane Mode on iPhone

Step 1: Tap “Settings” on the main screen. You can swipe left for the App Library.

Step 2: Tap on “Airplane Mode.”

Step 3: Wait for a while and disable Airplane Mode.

Method 2. Restart Phone

Just like enabling Airplane Mode, restarting your phone also helps to establish a fresh connection. Restarting your phone will reboot the device. After turning off your phone, wait for a while and turn it on.

For Android

Step 1: Hold the power button on the side.

Step 2: When the menu pops up, select “Power off” or “Restart.” When “Power off” is selected, you will have to turn it on manually.

For iOS Phone

Step 1: Press and hold the power button.

Step 2: The prompt “Slide to power off” will appear.

Step 3: Swipe on the prompt.

Step 4: Turn on the phone by holding the power button.

Method 3. Clean SIM Card and SIM Port

At times, your phone will not activate the SIM when it fails to detect it. The reason for it will be due to foreign bodies on the SIM port. It can be dirt, dust, and grime. For this reason, it is important to clean the SIM port and the SIM tray properly. You will also have to clean the SIM card to remove any dirt.

You can clean by using a dry and soft cloth. Make sure that you do it gently without any pressure so that there will be no damage to the SIM slots. You can even use compressed air for blowing off the dirt. However, never use your mouth as water can lead to damage. Once the cleaning is complete, you can reinsert your SIM card and turn on your device.

Method 4. Try A Different Port or Phone

Most smartphones come in dual-SIM design. You will have to confirm if the error message is in SIM 1 or SIM 2. In this case, you will have to insert the SIM card into the other SIM slot. Confirm and see if the error still persists. When you happen to encounter the error again, you can insert the SIM on another phone. If the SIM works fine, the problem is with the SIM card slot. Try to get it fixed by visiting the authorized service center.

Method 5. Install Carrier Settings Updates

The error “SIM not provisioned” can happen when you don’t install the carrier settings update. Carrier settings updates hold configurations for different functions including phone calls, SMS, mobile data, and personal hotspot. Although carrier settings updates are installed automatically, at times you will have to do it manually. Here is how you are going to do it.

Updating carrier settings on Android

Step 1: Go to “Settings” on your android phone.

Step 2: Tap on “About Phone”.

Step 3: Click on “Update Profile.”

On some phones, you will have to follow these steps

Step 1: Go to “Settings.”

Step 2: Select “System.”

Step 3: Click “Advanced” followed by “System Update.”

There are android phones where you may find carrier settings in the Cellular network option. You need to go to Settings followed by Cellular network and then click on Carrier settings.

Updating carrier settings on iPhone

Step 1: Navigate to “Settings.”

Step 2: Tap on “General.”

Step 3: Click “About.”

Step 4: Search for updating carrier settings.

If in case, there is no such option, it means your iPhone has updated carrier settings.

Method 6. Update Carrier Services App (for Android)

Android phones come with the app Carrier Services for handling carrier networks. This app is responsible for making a connection between the phone and the network provider. You can update the Carrier Services app by following these steps.

Step 1: Navigate to “Settings.

Step 2: Go to “Apps & notifications.

Step 3: Hit on “See All Apps” or “App Info.

Step 4: Select the menu icon (three dots) on the top-right corner.

Step 5: Click “Show System.”

Step 6: Look for “Carrier Services.”

Step 7: From the Store section, click on “App details.”

Step 8: You will be redirected to the Google Play Store.

Step 9: Tap on “Update.”

Method 7. Contact SIM Card Provider

When you happen to try all the above-mentioned methods, it is time to contact the SIM card provider. For this, you will have to get another device and give a call to the network provider. Give all the details clearly and inform the steps that you have performed. The network provider will look for the issue and provide a resolution within a stipulated time.


The above mentioned steps will help to resolve the error of “SIM not provisioned”. These are simple hacks that you can do without needing to visit the retailer. Even the Android System Repair tool is very helpful. Your service provider will see if there is a problem with the activation server. Always look for help and confirm if your SIM card is registered on the network. When there is no help, you can get a SIM replacement.

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