iMessage and FaceTime Waiting For Activation On iPhone 5

This morning I got my shiny new iPhone 5. As posted a yesterday, I had upgraded my iPhone 4 to iOS 6 to start getting used to the changes. With these changes, I was able to enjoy the convenience of iMessages syncing across all of my Apple devices. However, when I went to send a text this morning from the iPhone 5, I noticed that none of my iMessages had synced.

Fixing iMessage and FaceTime in iOS 6

The problem was that iMessage was waiting for activation. I was able to send SMS messages (shown with the green background) to non iPhone users, but iMessages were being sent to iPhone users using my Apple ID email address. First I tried turning iMessage off, then back on to see if it could re-enable everything properly. While it did enable, it would still only allow sending iMessages from my Apple ID email address - not my phone number.

Whenever I have a problem that I cannot fix on my own, I always head to Google. 9 times out of 10, someone else had a similar problem. With this search, I found a video explaining how to fix this on your phone. However, this only fixed only one part of the problem - which I will get to shortly. Feel free to skip to the video below as these steps mimic the explanation of the video.

Step 1: Disable And Reset

On your iPhone, in Settings, turn off iMessage, FaceTime, and Wifi. Once done, go to General and scroll down to the bottom and click Reset. In the reset panel options, choose Reset Network Settings. Once done, you will have to wait 10 to 15 seconds for the phone to turn back on.

Step 2: Enable Patiently

Once the iPhone turns back on, you want to wait until the iPhone notes that you have a cell phone signal - as we want to enable iMessages via the cell phone network, not Wifi to ensure it uses your phone number as part of iMessage. At that point, go back into Settings (again, double check that Wifi is turned off) and scroll down to Messages. In Messages turn iMessage on and wait until the “Waiting for authorization” message goes away and gives you the “iMessages can be sent between iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac” message. From there, you can do the same thing with FaceTime.

Potential Issue: One Enabled And The Other Did Not

When I tried this the first time, I was able to get iMessages running but not FaceTime. All I did to get FaceTime running was turn FaceTime off in Settings, then went back to General » Reset and Reset Network Options again. Once the phone turned back on, I went back into FaceTime and enabled it. After a little waiting, everything was enabled. From there, I turned Wifi back on.

Getting Your Phone Number Back In Messages In Mountain Lion

Once things were sorted out on my iPhone, my phone number had disappeared from Messages in Mountain Lion. To fix this, I simply went into Preferences » Accounts and removed my existing account. Then, chose iMessage in the Accounts panel and re-entered in the Apple ID information associated with my iPhone.

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