How to Fix Unable to Activate FaceTime Using 9 Solutions

“I am unable to activate FaceTime in my MacBook Air 2017 (High Seirra 10.13.6). Every time I type my ID and password and press Next, I get the message, 'An error occurred during activation. Try again.' I have checked timezone and date/time and made sure they are correct and yet I am unable to activate.” From An Apple User

If you are also experiencing the same trouble just as described above, and struggling to get rid of the unable to activate FaceTime error, then go no further! This article will guide you fix unable to activate Facetime error, no matter this error happens in iPhone/iPad, or on Mac.

Part 1. What FaceTime Activation Error Do You See?

Error 1. Facetime Activation Unable to contact the FaceTime server. Try again.

Unable to contact the FaceTime server Try again

Error 2. FaceTime Activation An error occurred during activation. Try again.

An error occurred during activation Try again

Error 3. FaceTime Your carrier may charge for SMS messages used to activate FaceTime.

unable to activate facetime

Error 4. FaceTime Sign in with your Apple ID to activate FaceTime.

Sign in with your Apple ID to activate FaceTime

Part 2. How to Fix FaceTime Activation Error on iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch

If the FaceTime activation error occurs on your iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch, such as “Unable to contact FaceTime service. Try again” , especially on iPhone 6s or iPhone 8, don’t worry. It is fixable. Here are the 4 fixes to resolve FaceTime activation error on iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch.

Fix 1. Check Your iOS Device Settings

Generally speaking, there is a setting for FaceTime in Settings app in your iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch. So if FaceTime fails to activate in your device, you will need to check your iOS device settings in the first place.

  • Step 1: Launch the Settings app in your device.
  • Step 2: Scroll down the screen, and tap FaceTime.
  • Step 3: You will see a toggle button for FaceTime. Ensure to turn on FaceTime. turn on facetime in settings to fix unable to activate facetime

Then try to activate FaceTime again and see if it works now. If FaceTime has already been turned on but still failed to activate, try the next solution.

Fix 2. Turn off and Restart FaceTime

Since FaceTime is still unable to activate even if it is turned on, you can try to restart your device. This method always works like a magic. Whenever the technical problem happens, restarting would be a great option when you have no idea what is going on.

If you are not familiar with restarting your iDevice, follow this:

  • For iPhone X and newer version: Press and hold the Volume up or down button, and the side button together, until the power off slider appears; drag the slider to power off your device, then press and hold the side button until your device powers on.
  • For iPhone 6, 7, 8, and SE 2nd: Press and hold the side button until the power off slider appears; drag the slider to power off; and then turn on your device by pressing and holding the side button. restart idevice to fix unable to activate facetime
  • For iPhone SE 1st, iPhone 5 and earlier: Press and hold the top button until you see the power off slider; drag the slider to power off the device; press and hold the top button until the Apple logo shows up.
  • For iPad with Face ID: Press and hold the Volume up or down button and the top button until the power off slider shows up; drag the slider to off; press and hold the top button to start your iPad.
  • For iPad with Home ID: press and hold the top button until the power off slider occurs; drag the slider; press and hold the top button until the Apple logo appears.

After restarting your device, try to activate FaceTime again and it should be working.

Fix 3. Update to Latest iOS Version

Sometimes you will see various errors including “Unable to contact FaceTime server” when the iOS system version is out of date. Therefore, try to update your device to the latest iOS version.

To know how to update to the latest iOS version:

  • Step 1: Launch the Settings app in your iOS device.
  • Step 2: Go to General > Software Update. Then it will detect the available update. update to latest ios version to fix unable to activate facetime
  • Step 3: Tap Download and Install, and follow the prompts to install the latest iOS system. After that, you can try to activate FaceTime.

Fix 4. Contact Apple Support

our problem still persists? Maybe there is an issue with Apple system status, and that’s why your problem can’t be resolved even if you have performed the solutions above. Simply visit the Apple System Status page, and check the Face Time status. If it shows abnormal, then all you need to do is wait until Apple fixes the system. If the system is available and FaceTime is not activated, you can contact Apple Support for further assistance.

contact apple support

Part 3. How to Fix Unable to Activate FaceTime on Mac

In addition, if you fail to activate FaceTime on Mac, don’t panic. You are not alone. Many people are struggling to fix Unable to activate FaceTime problem on Mac. You can try the solutions in this part to resolve it.

Solution 1. Check Your Date & Time Settings

It is worth a try to check your Date and Time settings in your Mac, when the FaceTime activation failed error happens in your Mac device.

  • Step 1: Click on the Apple logo on your Mac, and click System Preferences.
  • Step 2: Click on Date and Time.
  • Step 3: In the new window, make sure the time and time zone is correct. And you can set the time to automatic. check date and time on mac to fix unable to activate facetime
  • Step 4: Save and apply your settings. Now try to activate FaceTime and see how it works.

Solution 2. Check Your Internet Connection

As many people know, activating FaceTime service or other Apple services requires Internet connection. Why? Because doing this will require to connect to the Apple system server, and sign into your Apple ID account. That is to say, you may fail to activate FaceTime in your Mac because of Internet connection problem. You should check the Internet connection in your Mac, and make sure it works properly, then try to activate FaceTime again.

Solution 3. Check Apple System Status

Sometimes Apple systems will be under maintenance, or awaiting for fixes. In this case, you won’t be able to activate FaceTime when the Facetime system status is unavailable. When you are stuck in failing to activate Facetime on Mac, you can check the Apple System Status.

  • Step 1: Click on Apple System Status page in your browser.
  • Step 2: Check the FaceTime status. If it is available, then the problem lies in somewhere else; if the status is unavailable, then all you need to do is wait until the system server recovers. check apple system status to fix unable to activate facetime mac

Solution 4. Make Sure Your MacOS is Update to Date

You can try to update macOS system to the latest version if FaceTime fails to activate:

  • Step 1: Click on the Apple logo, and click System Preferences.
  • Step 2: Click Software Update. update macos to latest version to fix unable to activate facetime
  • Step 3: Click on Upgrade Now, and then follow the on-screen instructions to finish upgrading. After upgrading, try to activate FaceTime again.

Still no luck? See our next solution.

Solution 5. Check Your Apple ID

Many people have reported that it is doable to check the Apple ID when you are facing issues like unable to activate FaceTime.

  • Step 1: Open Face Time in your Mac, and click Face Time > Preferences.
  • Step 2: Click Settings. Then click Sign Out. check apple id on mac to fix unable to activate facetime
  • Step 3: Sign out your Apple ID, and then sign in again.

Hopefully this will help activate FaceTime successfully.

Extra Tips: How to Bypass Activation Lock on iPhone iPad

It is quite normal to see the activation lock when activating from iPhone 5s to iPhone X. But there is no need to worry about as we will recommend a great software to bypass activation lock on iPhone/iPad. PassFab Activation Unlocker is a professional tool to remove iCloud activation lock that prevents you from activating your iPhone or iPad. It is an easy-to-use program and you can work with it without technical knowledge.

How to bypass activation lock on iPhone/iPad using PassFab Activation Unlocker:

1. Download and install PassFab Activation Unlocker on your computer (available for Win & Mac).

2. Launch the program, and click Start.

click start in passfab activation unlocker to bypass  activation lock

3. Read the agreement carefully and click Next.

read agreement in passfab activation unlocker to bypass activation lock

4. Then connect your iPhone that is giving you the activation error to your computer, and the program will automatically detect your iPhone and download the jailbreak tool.

connect iphone in passfab activation unlocker to bypass activation lock

5. After downloading the jailbreak tool, follow the jailbreak tutorial on Windows or click Start Jailbreak on Mac.

start jailbreak in passfab activation unlocker to fix activation error

6. Follow the on-screen instructions to jailbreak your iPhone.

7. After that, click Start Remove, and PassFab Activation Unlocker will remove the iCloud activation lock for your device.

remove activation lock using passfab activation unlocker to fix activation error

8. Click Done and you are good to go.

successfully bypass activation lock via passfab activation unlocker

Final Words

To sum up, this post has introduced how to fix “Unable to activate FaceTime” error, whether on iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, or on Mac. You will be guided step by step to perform the methods to fix your problem. Meanwhile, we have recommended the best activation lock remover tool - PassFab Activation Unlocker - so as to resolve the activation errors without any hassle.

passfab activation unlocker box
  • Bypass Activation Lock without Apple ID and password
  • Remove Activation Lock without previous owner
  • Unlock iCloud lock within a few minutes
  • Support iPhone/iPad and iOS 12.0-14.2

Updated on / Posted by Shirley Howard to iPhone iPad / Follow @Shirley Howard

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