How to Fix iPhone Stuck on Keep Saying Searching

In this article, we will explore the most effective solutions and workarounds used to address an issue on the iPhone mobiles, in which the iPhone device shows a No Service or Searching for Network issue in the status bar and can’t connect to a cellular network. As an additional outcome, making and receiving calls, SMS and MMS are also affected. If you come here in search of a fix to this problem, you may give any of these methods a try and see the result.

Aside from the standard troubleshooting techniques, I’ve also included a peculiar trick adapted by a number of iPhone owners who have dealt with the issue on No Service or Searching network on the same iPhone. Read on to learn more about this potentially helpful technique and decide whether to give it a go or not.

Why Does My iPhone Say Searching?

One common misconception people have when their iPhone says Searching is that they imagine the issue is hardware related. While it is possible that your iPhone may have a hardware issue. There’s also a good chance a software issue is causing the problem.

There are many situations that can trigger errors like ‘No Service’ and ‘Searching network’ to occur on your iPhone mobile. In most cases, the problem is tied to a faulty SIM card while others are due to some network outages, a particular cellular network. Others have also encountered the same error prompt after performing a software update. Software updates can hold some bugs that may affect iPhone functionalities including its capability to search for cellular signals. Since downgrading is generally discouraged by most carriers and Apple itself, users may just have to wait for the next software update containing fixes. But if you can’t take ‘waiting for the next software update rollout’ as an option, then you may resort to any workarounds available in order to obtain a temporary remedy.

You can find many different ways to fix the No Service or Searching problems on iPhones populating the Internet sites and forums these days. However, not all these suggested methods will actually work in certain cases. For this reason, you have to persistently search for and try on any other solutions available until the issue is finally resolved.

The troubleshooting methods I recommend in this post are those that have done wonders to many iPhone 6s/6s Plus users who have dealt with the same problem on their respective devices. Thus, I consider these as potential solutions.

Important Notes:

  • Before you begin, make sure the cellular network is available in your area.
  • If your iPhone can’t connect to the cellular network, go to your iPhone settings and then check if Cellular is enabled or turned on.

The steps below will help you diagnose common software problems that could be the reason why it says Searching… in the upper left-hand corner of your iPhone’s display.

Tip 1. Remove and re-insert SIM card

If your SIM card is not accurately inserted into your iPhone, it could be generating the iPhone searching for service issue. To fix the issue, simply eject the SIM from your iPhone, properly put it on the tray, and insert it back into your device. It should work then.

  • Turn off your iPhone. (Please refer to the above steps, if necessary).
  • Remove the SIM card. Insert a paperclip or use the SIM-eject tool into the hole beside the tray to pop up your iPhone’s SIM tray. The SIM tray can be found on the right side of your iPhone.
  • Re-insert SIM card. Be sure to insert the SIM tray properly and in the same direction before you remove it.
  • Turn your iPhone back on.
remove and reinsert sim card

Tip 2. Force Restart Your iPhone

Many issues associated with the firmware can be rectified by a simple reboot on the device. For those who need assistance, here’s how to reboot an iPhone:

  • Press and hold the Power (Sleep/Wake) button until the red slider shows up.
  • Drag the slider to power off the iPhone wholly.
  • When the device is powered off, press and hold the Sleep/Wake button again until the Apple logo appears on the screen.
force restart iphone

Tip 3. Update Your Carrier Settings

I highly recommend you update carrier settings immediately after they become available because outdated settings may be oriented to connectivity issues between your iPhone and your wireless carrier’s network.

  • Some possible issues include having poor service or your iPhone going straight to voicemail anytime you receive a call.
  • Make sure that your iPhone is connected to a Wi-Fi network, or that Cellular Data is turned on.
  • Open the Settings app.
  • Make Tap General.
  • Tap About.
  • After a few seconds, if carrier settings update is available, you’ll see a prompt on the screen of your iPhone which labels that, “New settings are available. Would you like to update them now?”
  • Tap Update.
update carrier setting in iphone

Tip 4. Check time and date settings

Make sure your iPhone date and time is set in accordance with your current time zone. The foremost option is to enable “Set automatically”.

  • Connect iPhone to WiFi
  • Go to Settings
  • General
  • Date and Time
  • Turn On “Set Automatically”
check time and date setting in iphone

Tip 5. Turn on Cellular Data and Data Roaming

If changing Date and Time didn’t fix the issue, try this method. First of all, make sure your Cellular Data is Turned on.

Go to the Cellular settings in your iPhone. Your options here will vary depending on your cell provider, but check the settings listed below to see if you can change them.

Turn on Cellular Data and Data Roaming

Toggle right the Cellular Data icon at the top of the screen. If you are unable to turn it on, check that you don’t have Airplane Mode switched on—shown by a plane icon in the status bar.

If you’re abroad, turn on Roaming and Voice Roaming under the Cellular Data Options. Though be wary that doing so could lead to a larger phone bill.

Finally, scroll to Carrier settings and disable the Automatic button. Search the list to manually choose your network if possible.

Tip 6. Disable and Enable Airplane Mode

The easiest way to fix no service on iPhone problem is by turning on/off the Airplane mode. To overcome the search errors try to enable and disable the Airplane mode. Toggle on and off the Airplane mode to find a solution to this error.

  • Swipe up the bottom of your iPhone screen and the control center will appear.
  • click the Airplane sign on the top-left corner or control center screen to turn it on.
  • Wait for one minute, then turn it off.
disable and enabe airplane mode in iphone

Tip 7. Reset the Network Settings

By resetting your Network Settings on iPhone will reconnect with carrier and WiFi networks. This means you’ll need to re-enter the password for your WiFi—make sure you’ve got it before moving any further.

  • Go to the Settings
  • Then General
  • Scroll to Reset at the bottom of the page.
  • From this screen, you can choose the Reset Network Settings button and follow any further pop-ups that appear on the screen.
reset networking setting in iphone

Tip 8. Repair your iOS system

It’s possibly a bug in your iOS has caused the Searching or No Service error. This happened to many iPhone users with the release of iOS 8 and was fixed with a later fix/patch.

To update your device’s iOS you need to connect to a WiFi network or plug your iPhone into a PC running iTunes. If connected to WiFi:

  • Go to Settings
  • General
  • Software Update

If currently using iTunes you will see an Update option after plugging in your device.

update ios

If it doesn’t work, you can also use an iOS System Recovery to help you

Tip 9. Contact the Carrier Provider

The Searching or No Service issue could occur by your carrier providers. Cell towers sometimes malfunction or go down for maintenance. You may even find that your account has been suspended due to suspected fraud, late payments, or if your iPhone has been reported as stolen.

Use another mobile device to contact your carrier via call and discuss the issue with them. Ensure your account and their cell towers are in full working order before moving on. You may need to provide your IMEI number if they think your phone has been stolen.


We’re here to help you! Having other problems with your iPhone and need our support, feel free to contact us and we will do our best to address them in our next articles. Just be sure to give us all major details of the problem, for us to be able to come up with more suitable analysis and get back to you with the best possible solution and recommendations.

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