Wi-Fi isn’t available so you opted to connect to a cellular data network in order to use online apps and services immediately. But to your dismay, cellular data is not working. You’re certain that it was perfectly working fine until you’ve installed the recently rolled out iOS 13 update on your iPhone. It seems like the update did not bring in a positive outcome to your iPhone after all. And now, you’ve got to deal with mobile data issue on your iPhone. If you’ve landed into this page while searching for help, then this post is for you. Read on to learn what to do if your iPhone cellular data doesn’t work after updating to iOS 13.
Internet browsing in mobile devices is not only made possible through Wi-Fi but also via Cellular Data. With Cellular Data enabled, you can use mobile data network to connect to the Internet and use internet-based apps and services even without an available Wi-Fi network. Cellular data usage may result in extra charges, so consulting your carrier or network service provider before you enable data on your phone is recommended. Normally, cellular data works as intended as soon as you toggle it on. But just like Wi-Fi, there are also some factors that can halt data functions and make it fail to work as intended. Aside from network-related issues, iOS bugs have emerged among the usual triggers. Mapped out below are generic solutions that are often used to resolve post-update issues affecting the iPhone’s cellular data functions.
Before we move on to our troubleshooting, if you are looking for a solution to a different issue, make sure you drop by our troubleshooting page as we’ve already addressed some of the most common problems reported by our readers. Find issues that are similar to yours and use the solutions we suggested. If you still need our help after that, then feel free to contact us by filling up our iOS issues questionnaire.
Troubleshooting iPhone with Cellular Data that’s not working on iOS 13
Before troubleshooting, check and ensure that you’re using your phone in an area within your network’s coverage. The cellular signal bars on your iPhone’s status bar should serve as prompt indicator that tells you about how strong or weak is the network signal acquired by your iPhone at the moment. If the signal strength indicator is too poor or weak, then that’s likely the main reason why Cellular Data couldn’t get to work as intended. But if mobile data isn’t working even if the signal strength is strong (full bars), then the problem is likely within your iPhone system and that is what you should try to rule out. You may instigate troubleshooting your iPhone whenever you’re ready.
First solution: Reboot your iPhone (soft reset).
The fact that data was working fine before the update makes it an indication that something in the update has spoiled the feature and eventually causing to fail suddenly. If that’s the first attempt you’ve made to use mobile data on your iPhone after updating to iOS 13 and then it failed, then rebooting the system or performing a soft reset on the iPhone will likely suffice. Note that there are different ways to reboot or performing a soft reset and the steps vary per iPhone model.
If you’re using an iPhone X or later variant, a soft reset is carried out through these steps:
- Press and hold the Side button and either Volume button until the Power off slider appears.
- Drag the slider to power off your iPhone completely.
- Then after 30 seconds, press the Side button again to turn your iPhone back on.
If you’re using an iPhone 8, 8 Plus or earlier iPhones with a Home button, a soft reset is done this way:
- Press and hold the Top or Side button until the Power off slider appears.
- Drag the slider to power off the phone completely.
- After about 30 seconds, press and hold the Top or Side button again to turn the phone back on.
Minor symptoms triggered by random system glitches are usually remedied after the phone reboots, so try and see if that fixes the problem with your Cellular Data too. If it isn’t still working, then there must be something else that’s halting your iPhone’s mobile data system from functioning. And that’s what you need to eliminate in order to fix the problem.
Second solution: Toggle Cellular Data off and on.
It is possible that your phone’s mobile data system has been corrupted from the recent iOS transition and thereby results in its sudden failure. Should this be just a minor flaw, restarting data feature on your iPhone will likely be able to fix it. So here’s what you should try doing next:
- Tap Settings from the Home screen.
- Tap Cellular.
- Toggle the switch next to Cellular Data to turn the feature ON.
You can try switching between network options like from LTE to 4G or 3G. You can also enable Cellular Data for specific services like App Store, Mail, Music, and the like. Just scroll down to the Use Cellular Data For section and then toggle the switch to turn mobile data for the said services off or on.
If you are using a Dual SIM iPhone, you need to set or assign one of your plans to be the primary data number so that you can see how much data have been used.
Third solution: Toggle Airplane Mode on and off.
Problems affecting wireless services including those inflicted by iOS updates can also be remedied by performing the Airplane mode trick. This works by simultaneously turning off all wireless features of the phone including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and cellular data connections and then turning them back on again. So it’s like giving these features a simultaneous restart and refresh. Many people have already found wonders from performing this trick so you might as well consider trying it too. Here’s how it’s done:
- From the Home screen, tap Settings.
- Select Airplane Mode.
- Then toggle the Airplane Mode switch to turn the feature on. Doing so disables the phone’s wireless radios and relevant functions at once.
- While Airplane mode is turned on, reboot the iPhone to refresh its memory and clear cache.
- After it restarts, go back to Settings-> Airplane Mode menu.
- Then toggle the switch to turn Airplane Mode off again. Doing so re-enables the phone’s wireless radios and functions.
Wait for your iPhone’s cellular network signal indicator to become stable then verify and ensure that mobile data is enabled. Once confirmed that the feature is enabled, try connecting to the Internet or using online apps and services via cellular data network connection. If the problem isn’t resolved and you still couldn’t use data, then you have to troubleshoot further and rule out other factors.
Fourth solution: Reset network settings.
If the previous tweak doesn’t solve the problem, then your next option is a network settings reset. This will help eliminate network errors from invalid network settings configuration. What possibly happened from the update was that your iPhone’s network settings have been overridden and eventually resulted to some conflicts, particularly on the phone’s cellular functions. To rule this out, follow these steps to reset network settings on your iPhone:
- Navigate to the Home screen then tap on Settings.
- Tap General.
- Scroll down to and tap on Reset.
- Choose the option to Reset network settings.
- If prompted, enter your passcode to proceed.
- Then tap the option to confirm that you want to reset network settings on your iPhone.
This reset will not result in permanent data loss as it doesn’t affect any saved data on the iPhone storage. However, your current network settings including saved Bluetooth connections, Wi-Fi networks, and other relevant information are deleted while the original network values and options are restored.
After the reset, your phone restarts automatically. By then you can start enabling network features including Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and Cellular Data so you can use them again on your phone. Try that and see if Cellular Data gets to work properly again afterwards. If it doesn’t solve the problem, then you can proceed to the next method.
Fifth solution: Remove then reinsert the SIM card.
Network-related errors including those affecting the phones cellular functions can also be rectified by removing and reinstalling the SIM card. While the problem instigated from the update, it’s still possible that a loose or damaged SIM card has something to do with it. To clear this out, remove the SIM card from your iPhone, check it for any visible signs of damage, and if there’s none, place it back.
To get started, turn off your phone. Turning the phone off before removing the SIM card is recommended to prevent damaging the SIM card or the device itself. Then proceed to removing and reinstalling the SIM card from your iPhone with the following steps:
- While SIM card is turned, insert the SIM ejector tool into the SIM tray on the side of your phone.
- Gently push the tool until the SIM tray pops out.
- Pull the SIM card out from the tray and examine the card for any visible signs of liquid traces or scratches.
- If there’s no damage indication on the SIM card, place it back into the tray in the same orientation before it was removed.
- Make sure that the SIM card is properly seated and has secured contact to the SIM card tray.
- If everything’s good, push the SIM tray back into the phone until you hear it clicks.
When the SIM tray is locked in place, turn the phone back on and wait for it to re-establish cellular network signal. If the signal indicators become stable, enable Cellular data and see if that solves the problem.
Still couldn’t get cellular data to work on your iPhone after iOS 13 update?
Performing the above procedures are usually enough to eliminate software-related factors that might have prevented mobile data from working properly on the iPhone after an iOS update. But the fact that data is still not working up to this point makes it possible that the problem could not be remedied by end-users and therefore needs to be escalated to the technical department.
Contact your network service provider/carrier to escalate the problem for more advanced solutions and recommendations. There might be some advanced network settings that need to be reconfigured or modified in order to work properly with the latest iOS version.
You can also escalate the problem straight to Apple Support given that it instigated after the iOS 13 update installation. This could be an iOS bug that requires a dedicated fix patch. Just let them know exactly of what you’ve done in an attempt to resolve the issue on your end.
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