Apple iPhone XS won’t send SMS. Here’s what you should do to fix it…

  • Know the reason why your Apple iPhone XS won’t send SMS all of the sudden.
  • Learn how to troubleshoot your iPhone with texting problems.

Device manufacturers highly recommend installing of every firmware update to ensure that their devices are performing at their best. Not only that updates offer new features but they also embed some fix patches to address existing issues on certain devices. Updates to iOS devices also offer the same benefits.

However, not all people ended up having a flawless system transition. In fact, various types of post-update issues had affected many iPhone owners ever since the first iOS update was released. And that remains a dilemma up to the present.

Tackled in this post is one of the emerging issues experienced by iPhone XS owners, following the recent iOS 12.1.4 update. If your iPhone XS suddenly stopped sending SMS after updating to iOS 12.1.4, then this post may help you. Read on to learn what to do if your iPhone XS won’t send SMS after iOS 12.1.4 update.

For those who are looking for a solution to a different problem, drop by our troubleshooting page for we have already addressed some of the most common issues with this phone. Browse through the page to find issues that are similar with yours and use the solutions we suggested. If they don’t work for you or if you still need our help, contact us anytime through our iPhone issues questionnaire.

Possible reasons why your iPhone XS is unable to send SMS messages after an update

Problems affecting cellular services particularly SMS sending and receiving are usually due to network outages, software glitches, and update bugs. In worst case scenario, the problem is associated with a damaged component including defective SIM card and other relevant components. In this case, iPhone repair is needed. Software-related issues on the other hand, can still be remedied by performing some workarounds including the ones I’ve mapped out below.

Before you start troubleshooting, check and ensure that the date and time settings on your iPhone XS are properly configured. Incorrect date or time can also cause conflicts to real-time services, including SMS messaging functions. If necessary, set the date and time to automatic so that it will base the information on your current place’s time zone. Otherwise, proceed with these subsequent methods to troubleshoot your device.

1st solution: Restart your messaging app.

Any can become unstable after installing updates due the recent system transition. Even computer programs do that too. Should this be what’s halting your messaging app from sending SMS following the recent iOS 12.1.4 update installation, then restarting the app will be able to fix the glitch. So here’s what you should do first:

  1. Swipe up from the bottom of the Home screen and then pause slightly in the middle of the screen.
  2. Then swipe right or left to navigate through the app previews.
  3. Swipe up on the messaging app card/preview to close it. If you’re using the built-in messaging app on your iPhone XS, find and select the Messages card or preview to quit the application.

Clearing other apps that are left opened or suspended on the background is also recommended to prevent any of these apps from causing conflict with the messaging app. Just follow the same steps to clear the rest of the background apps on your phone.

ALSO READ: How to fix an Apple iPhone XS that keeps disconnecting from Apple Airpods after updating iOS 

2nd solution: Restart the iPhone (soft reset).

Minor software issues in general are usually remedied by a device restart, also known as soft reset on an iPhone. It works by clearing junk files that are stored among other caches from apps and phone memory. Any corrupt caches that caused conflict to the SMS messaging app on your iPhone XS will also be cleared out in the process. It doesn’t affect saved data on the internal memory thus creating backups isn’t necessary. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Press and hold the Side/Power button and either Volume buttons simultaneously for a few seconds.
  2. Release the buttons when the Slide to Power Off command appears and then drag the power off slider to the right.
  3. After 30 seconds, press and hold the Power/Side button again until the iPhone reboots.

Wait for your device to finish booting up then try creating a sample SMS message to send and receive.

3rd solution: Turn iCloud Messages off and on again.

If you cannot send SMS using the stock Messages app on your iPhone XS, turning iCloud Messages off and then back on may also do some wonders. This will help if the recent update had caused conflict to iCloud apps, particularly Messages. Here’s how to configure this setting on your iPhone XS:

  1. Tap Settings from your Home screen.
  2. Select your Apple ID profile on the top of the screen.
  3. Tap iCloud.
  4. Scroll down to the apps using iCloud then select Messages.
  5. Try turning off Messages in the Cloud and see if that yields a positive outcome.

Give your phone another restart then see if you can now send SMS messages as usual.

4th solution: Toggle Airplane mode on and off.

Another simple trick that’s been proven to do wonders when dealing with device issues affecting wireless services is the Airplane mode toggle. It works by giving a quick restart to your phone’s wireless radios and thereby refreshes wireless features including cellular services. If you wish to try it, then here’s how the Airplane mode trick is done on your iPhone XS:

  1. Go to Settings-> Airplane Mode menu
  2. Then toggle the switch to turn Airplane Mode ON. Doing so will disable wireless radios including Wi-Fi connections and wireless network services in general.
  3. After a few seconds, tap the switch again to turn Airplane mode OFF.

Allow your device to re-establish network connections then try if SMS messaging is already working properly again.

5th solution: Reset network settings on your iPhone.

The recent update might have ruined your current network settings and eventually ruined cellular functions. To rule this out, performing a network settings reset is recommended. This reset will erase your current network settings on the phone and then restores the original values. Your device will be disconnected from Wi-Fi and Bluetooth devices are likewise cleared out in the process. If you wish to proceed, then refer to these steps:

  1. From your Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down to and then tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Reset network settings.
  5. If prompted, enter your passcode then follow the onscreen instructions to confirm network settings reset.

Your device should restart automatically when the reset is finished. Wait for it to finish rebooting and then start setting up your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connections. Don’t forget to create a test SMS message and see if you are now able to send and receive SMS on your iPhone XS.

6th solution: Remove and reseat the SIM card.

Before removing the SIM card, turn off your iPhone completely. This is highly recommended to prevent damaging the SIM card and other relevant components. Then continue with these steps:

  1. While your phone is turned off, insert the SIM ejector into the provided hole on the SIM tray.
  2. Gently push the ejector tool until the tray pops out.
  3. Pull the tray out from the phone then remove the SIM card.
  4. Check the SIM card for any visible signs of damage like liquid traces and scratches.
  5. If everything looks good, place the SIM card back into the slot. Be sure to position the SIM card in the same orientation before it was removed.
  6. When the SIM card is secured, push the tray back into the phone.
  7. Lock the tray in place and then turn your iPhone back on.

Wait until your phone acquires network signal then try and see if SMS sending is already working.

7th solution: Reset and restore factory default settings on your iPhone.

Among the last options to consider when dealing with persistent symptoms is a factory reset or master reset. This will wipe everything from your iPhone system including major errors and corrupted system data inflicted by the recent iOS update. That said, creating backups beforehand is necessary. Whenever you’re all set, you can factory reset your iPhone XS through settings or using iTunes on a computer. The first method is carried out this way:

  1. From your Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down to and then tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Erase all content and settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode when ask to proceed then follow the onscreen instructions to confirm factory settings reset.

After the reset, you can set up your iPhone XS as new. Just follow the initial setup wizard to complete the process.

If you are using a third-party messaging application, installing the latest update for that app is also important. The app may no longer be able to work with the recent platform because it is outdated. To evade such possibilities, app developers usually push app updates soon before or after an iOS release. If you haven’t set your third-party apps to auto-update, it’s possible that you’ve missed to install some critical update for your messaging app. In that case, you will need to manually check for and install pending app updates on your iPhone XS. Here’s how:

  1. From the Home screen, tap App Store.
  2. From the App Store main screen, scroll down to the bottom and then tap on the Updates tab. A list of all apps with pending updates will then appear.
  3. Tap the Update button next to the name of your messaging app to install pending updates.
  4. If multiple app updates are available, then you can just tap on the Update All button on the top-right of the screen. Doing so will install all app updates simultaneously.

Restart your iPhone after updating to save the recent changes and to refresh your apps. If that doesn’t work either, then you may have to delete and reinstall the app on your iPhone XS.

Still cannot send SMS on your iPhone XS?

Fatal system errors from major iOS bugs are likely present if the problem continues after applying all prior solutions. Complex system errors are usually dealt with be a master reset but if that still failed, then you may opt for iOS restore. At this point, you may go for a recovery mode restore or put your iPhone XS in DFU mode and restore iOS through iTunes.

If all else failed to solve the problem, then that’s when you need to escalate the problem to your carrier. Do so will let them know of the problem and tag it among other post-update problems to address. They can also give you further instructions on what to do next. Alternatively, you may report the issue straight to Apple Support.

I hope that we’ve been able to help you fix the problem with your device. We would appreciate it if you helped us spread the word so please share this post if you found it helpful. Thank you so much for reading!