How to fix an iPhone 11 Pro Max that cannot make phone calls

What most people appreciate more are the advanced features a new smartphone has to offer. Nonetheless, a smartphone will never be deemed smart if it fails to deliver the basic functions, particularly calling and texting. Although you seldom hear of a new phone having trouble executing basic calling and texting functions or iPhone calls drop, such problem is not impossible to occur. Even Apple’s newest flagship iPhones are no exception. Addressed in this post is a pertinent issue on the new iPhone 11 Pro Max that cannot make phone calls for some reason. Read on to find out why things like these occur and how to deal with them.

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Troubleshooting an iPhone 11 Pro Max that cannot make phone calls

Before troubleshooting, check and ensure that your iPhone is getting a stable cellular network signal. If the signal is not stable or too weak, calling and texting functions may not work. Meanwhile, software-related issues affecting your iPhone’s calling functions are usually handled by carrying out some workarounds. For as long as your iPhone is free from any sort of hardware damage, your chance of resolving the issue is definitely higher. All you need is to give each of them a try.


First solution: Reboot your iPhone (soft reset).

A simple restart on the phone can help fix various types of software issues including random call processing failures. This process does not affect any saved data on the internal memory, so backing up files won’t be necessary. If you haven’t already, simply follow these steps to soft reset your iphone 11 Pro Max:

  1. Simultaneously press and hold the Side and Volume Up buttons for a few seconds.
  2. Release both buttons when the Slide to Power off bar appears.
  3. Swipe or drag the bar to turn your device off.
  4. After about 30 seconds, press and hold the Side button and then release when the Apple logo appears.

Wait for your iPhone to finish rebooting and allow it to re-establish cellular network signal. Once the signal is steady open the phone dialer app then try placing a test call to see if it’s already working.

ALSO READ: How to fix No service error on iPhone 11 Pro Max, SMS and calls not working


Second solution: Toggle Airplane Mode on and off.

Problems affecting wireless features of your iPhone can also be dealt with by another simple trick called the Airplane mode toggle. It works by simultaneously deactivating the phone’s wireless radios including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and cellular data. Here’s how it works:

  1. Tap Settings from the Home screen. 
  2. Select Airplane mode
  3. Toggle the switch next to Airplane mode to turn the feature on. All wireless functions of your phone are then disabled simultaneously.
  4. While the Airplane mode is enabled, perform a soft reset on your phone. 
  5. Wait until your phone is finished rebooting and then go back to Settings-> Airplane mode menu. 
  6. Finally, tap the Airplane Mode switch again to disable the feature.

Wait for your phone to re-establish cellular network signal and once it’s steady, try placing a test call and see if it’ll go through this time.


Third solution: Update carrier settings on your iPhone 11 Pro Max.

Network-related issues can also be addressed by installing carrier updates. These updates came from your network service provider/carrier. They usually integrate network system enhancements as well as fix patches for getting rid of existing network bugs. While most carrier updates are automatically instead, others require manual implementation. If your phone can access the internet, follow these steps to manually check for available carrier update on your iphone 11 Pro Max:

  1. From the Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Tap About.

If you see a notification saying that a new carrier update is available, just follow the given instructions to install the update on your phone.

Aside from carrier updates, installing the latest iOS version available for your iPhone can also help fix the problem if stubborn system bugs are to blame. Like carrier updates, iOS updates also embed some dedicated fix patches to address widespread issues among iOS devices. Just follow these steps to check for new iOS updates wirelessly:

  1. Tap Settings from your Home screen.
  2. Select General.
  3. Tap Software Update.

A notification will show up if a new firmware update is up for grabs. Just follow the onscreen instructions to download and install the update on your device. Before updating though, back up all your important files for safekeeping.

ALSO READ: How to fix an iPhone 11 Pro that won’t connect to App Store


Fourth solution: Reset network settings to fix your iPhone 11 Pro Max that cannot make phone calls.

If incorrect network settings or invalid network configurations are the underlying cause, the problem will likely be resolved by performing a network settings reset on your phone. This will erase all your current network settings including saved Wi-Fi networks, Bluetooth connections and cellular settings. Any associated errors will likewise be removed. If you wish to give it a shot, then here’s how it’s done:

  1. From the Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down and tap on Reset.
  4. Tap Reset Network Settings from the given options.
  5. Enter your passcode if prompted to continue.
  6. Confirm action by tapping on Reset Network Settings again

When the reset is finished, your phone restarts automatically and then loads up the original network values. That being said, you’ll need to re-enable Wi-Fi, cellular data, Bluetooth and other wireless/network features so you can use them again on your phone.


Fifth solution: Reinstall your SIM card.

In order to use cellular service, your phone must have a SIM card installed. This SIM card must be provisioned with the correct plan your account is subscribed to, hence it should come from your carrier or network provider. 

Before you begin, be sure to turn off your iPhone completely. This is a must-do to avoid causing any sort of damage to the SIM card components or device itself. Continue with these steps once your iPhone is powered off.

  1. Insert the SIM ejector into the small hole on the SIM tray located on the right side of your iPhone.
  2. Gently push the SIM ejector until the tray pops out.
  3. Pull the tray out then remove the SIM card.
  4. Examine the card for any visible signs of damage like scratches or liquid traces.
  5. If there’s none, place the SIM card back into the tray with the gold contacts facing down and the notched edge on the upper right.
  6. Push the SIM tray back into the phone until you hear it clicks into place.

You’ll know when the tray is secured when it is flush with the side of your phone. By then you can turn your phone back on and then retry making a phone call to see if it’s already working.

If you suspect that the SIM card is damaged, try inserting it to your other compatible device and then see if you can make phone calls using the same SIM card. If it works on your other device, then the SIM card isn’t the underlying cause. If not, then you can report the issue to your carrier and ask them if you can have a new SIM card replacement.


Last resort: Erase your iPhone and restore its factory default settings.

Resorting to a factory reset may be considered among the last options if none of the previous methods is able to solve the problem. What you’re dealing with could be due to some complex system errors that ruined the phone’s calling functions. To correct fatal system errors like this, erasing the device is usually needed. Doing so allows you to set up everything as new. If you wish to continue, back up all your critical files to iCloud or iTunes. Then follow these steps whenever you’re all set to factory reset your iPhone:

  1. From the Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Tap General from the given options.
  3. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen then tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Erase All Content and Settings.
  5. If prompted with a warning message, tap on Erase iPhone to proceed.
  6. Enter your passcode to continue.
  7. Tap Erase iPhone twice to confirm.

When the reset is finished, your phone will restart. As soon as it’s finished rebooting, you can proceed with the initial setup process using the set-up wizard. 

ALSO READ: How to fix incoming call delays on iPhone XS iOS 13 [Troubleshooting Guide] 


What to do if your iPhone 11 Pro Max still cannot make phone calls?

Cellular issues that could not be resolved by the aforementioned procedures are usually those that have something to do with account problems as well as temporary network outages. This is when you need to contact your network service provider or carrier for verification. Account-related issues such as unsettled bills are usually the main reason for soft (temporary) disconnection of outgoing services. In this case, you’ll need to settle things with your carrier first and your outgoing services including outgoing calls should be back up and working again once you’ve got all account problems sorted out. For calling problems due to temporary network outages, there’s not much can be done on your end but to wait until the outage is over. 

For none of these suggestions worked and your new iphone 11 Pro Max is still unable to make phone calls, you should escalate the problem to Apple Support for further assistance.

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