Why Does My Phone Say “Emergency Calls Only”?

‍In today’s fast-paced world, our smartphones have become an essential tool for communication. So, it can be incredibly frustrating when our phones display the message “Emergency Calls Only,” preventing us from making regular calls, sending texts, or accessing mobile data. This issue is not uncommon, especially for Android and Samsung Galaxy phones. Fortunately, there are several troubleshooting steps and solutions that can help resolve this problem.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the common reasons behind the “Emergency Calls Only” message and provide step-by-step solutions to fix it. From checking your network signal to reinserting the SIM card, we will cover all the necessary troubleshooting steps to get your phone back to normal functionality. So, let’s dive in and resolve the “Emergency Calls Only” issue on your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone.

1. Restart Your Phone or Toggle Airplane Mode

One of the simplest and most effective solutions to resolve the “Emergency Calls Only” issue is to restart your phone or toggle Airplane mode. Restarting your phone can help refresh the system and clear any temporary glitches that may be causing the error message. Similarly, enabling and disabling Airplane mode can reset all network connections on your phone. To do this:

  1. Restart Your Phone:
    • Press and hold the power button until the power options menu appears.
    • Tap on “Restart” or “Reboot” to restart your phone.
  2. Toggle Airplane Mode:
    • Swipe down from the top of the screen to access the Quick Settings panel.
    • Tap on the Airplane mode icon to enable it.
    • Wait for a few seconds and tap the icon again to disable Airplane mode.

2. Check Your Mobile Plan

Before diving into technical troubleshooting, it’s crucial to ensure that your mobile plan is active and up-to-date. If you have not paid your wireless carrier bill, they may have temporarily suspended your service, leading to the “Emergency Calls Only” message. Contact your wireless carrier to verify the status of your mobile plan and make any necessary payments to restore normal phone functionality.

3. Ensure Proper Placement of the SIM Card

A misaligned or improperly inserted SIM card can also trigger the “Emergency Calls Only” message on your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone. Follow these steps to check and reseat your SIM card properly:

  1. Locate the SIM Card Slot:
    • Depending on your phone model, the SIM card slot is usually found on the side of the phone or beneath the battery cover.
    • Refer to your device’s documentation or manufacturer’s website to locate the SIM card slot for your specific model.
  2. Remove and Reinsert the SIM Card:
    • If your phone has a removable back cover, power off the device and remove the back cover to access the SIM card slot.
    • Carefully remove the SIM card from the slot using your fingernail or a SIM card removal tool.
    • Inspect the SIM card for any visible damage or dirt. If necessary, gently clean it with a soft cloth.
    • Align the notched edge of the SIM card with the outline in the SIM card tray and insert it back into the slot.
    • Replace the back cover (if applicable) and power on your phone.

If the issue persists, consider trying a different SIM card to rule out any potential problems with the original card. Contact your wireless carrier to obtain a replacement SIM card if needed.

4. Verify Network Mode Settings

Incorrect network mode settings can also lead to the “Emergency Calls Only” message on your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone. By selecting the appropriate network mode, you can ensure that your phone is compatible with your carrier’s network. Here’s how to check and adjust the network mode settings:

  1. Open the Settings app on your phone.
  2. Navigate to the “Connections” or “Network & Internet” section.
  3. Tap on “Mobile Networks” or a similar option.
  4. Select “Network Mode” or “Preferred Network Type.”
  5. Choose the recommended network mode for your carrier, such as LTE/4G or 5G, depending on availability.
  6. If the issue persists, try switching to a different network mode and test if the error message disappears.

5. Manually Select Network Operator

In some cases, your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone may mistakenly connect to an incompatible network operator, resulting in the “Emergency Calls Only” message. By manually selecting the correct network operator, you can ensure a stable connection. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app on your phone.
  2. Navigate to the “Connections” or “Network & Internet” section.
  3. Tap on “Mobile Networks” or a similar option.
  4. Select “Network Operators” or “Carrier” (may vary depending on your device).
  5. Disable the “Select automatically” toggle if enabled.
  6. Wait for your phone to search for available network operators.
  7. Choose the correct network operator from the list.
  8. Allow your phone to connect to the selected network operator.

6. Perform a Network Settings Reset

Resetting the network settings on your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone can help resolve connectivity issues that may be causing the “Emergency Calls Only” message. This process will reset all network-related settings, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and mobile data configurations. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app on your phone.
  2. Navigate to the “System” or “General Management” section.
  3. Tap on “Reset” or a similar option.
  4. Select “Reset Network Settings” from the available options.
  5. Confirm the reset and enter any required passcode or PIN.
  6. Your phone will restart, and the network settings will be reset to their default values.

After the reset, reconfigure your Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and mobile data settings as necessary. Test your phone to see if the “Emergency Calls Only” issue has been resolved.

7. Check for Blacklisted IMEI

If your phone has been reported stolen or involved in fraudulent activities, your wireless carrier may blacklist the IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) of your device. This blacklist status can lead to the “Emergency Calls Only” message. If you have purchased a second-hand phone or imported one from another country, contact your carrier to verify if your phone’s IMEI has been blacklisted. They can provide further assistance and guidance on how to resolve the issue.

8. Diagnose Mobile Network with Samsung Members App

If you own a Samsung Galaxy phone, you can utilize the Samsung Members app to diagnose and troubleshoot network-related issues. The app provides self-diagnostic tools to test various features and functions of your device. Here’s how to use the Samsung Members app for network diagnostics:

  1. Open the Samsung Members app on your phone. If it is not preinstalled, you can download it from the Galaxy Store or Play Store.
  2. Navigate to the “Support” or “Help” tab within the app.
  3. Look for options related to “Phone diagnostics” or “Device care.”
  4. Select “Mobile network” or a similar option to initiate the network diagnostic test.
  5. Follow the on-screen instructions and allow the app to check for any network-related issues.
  6. If any problems are detected, consider contacting Samsung support or visiting a service center for further assistance.

9. Factory Reset as a Last Resort

If all other troubleshooting steps have failed to resolve the “Emergency Calls Only” issue on your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone, you can consider performing a factory reset as a last resort. However, it is crucial to note that a factory reset will erase all data and settings from your device. Therefore, make sure to backup your important data before proceeding. Here’s how to perform a factory reset:

  1. Open the Settings app on your phone.
  2. Navigate to the “System” or “General Management” section.
  3. Tap on “Reset” or a similar option.
  4. Select “Factory data reset” or “Erase all data.”
  5. Confirm the reset and enter any required passcode or PIN.
  6. Your phone will restart and begin the factory reset process.
  7. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the reset.
  8. Once the reset is finished, set up your phone as a new device and restore your backed-up data.

10. Additional Tips and Considerations

  • Check for software updates: Keeping your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone’s software up to date can help resolve various issues, including connectivity problems. Check for any available software updates in the Settings app.
  • Contact your wireless carrier: If none of the above solutions work, it is advisable to contact your wireless carrier directly for further assistance. They can provide specific troubleshooting steps or escalate the issue if necessary.
  • Consider professional repair: If the “Emergency Calls Only” issue persists even after trying all the troubleshooting steps, it may indicate a hardware problem. In such cases, it is recommended to visit an authorized service center or contact the manufacturer for professional repair.

By following these troubleshooting steps and solutions, you should be able to resolve the “Emergency Calls Only” issue on your Android or Samsung Galaxy phone. Remember to always backup your data before performing any significant changes to your device. If you encounter any difficulties or have specific questions, reach out to the appropriate customer support channels for further assistance. Stay connected and enjoy the full functionality of your phone once again!