Troubleshooting Data Connection On GSM Devices

Thanks for activating your GSM device with TextNow! If you're having trouble connecting to the TextNow service off wifi, here are some tips to help check your connection and settings:


Check for coverage

TextNow works through the data connection on your phone, either through wifi or through the GSM network. TextNow doesn't use roaming networks (which also means we never charge you for roaming!) - you'll need to be within GSM coverage to call and text off wifi. Click here for our coverage maps for both GSM and CDMA networks!


Check to see if Mobile Data is turned on your phone

As our TextNow service works through the data connection of your phone, you'll need to have Mobile Data turned on your phone in order to access the GSM network off wifi. This setting will be in your main Settings app on your phone, although it will be in slightly different places depending on your device. 

  • For Android (5.0 and later): Tap on your main Settings app,  then tap on Data Usage. The Mobile Data setting should be switched ON
  • For Android (earlier versions): Tap on your main Settings app, then go to More Networks > Mobile Networks. There should be a checkmark next to Mobile Data
  • For iOS: You can find your Mobile Data settings under your main Settings app > Cellular > Mobile Data. The Mobile Data setting should be switched ON

Check network settings.

On your phone, check your network mode. You can usually find it (on Android devices) under the main Settings app > Mobile Networks > Network Mode. If you have the choice for Automatic, set it to Automatic. Otherwise, make sure your phone is selected to a GSM network mode and not CDMA or LTE. 


Check your Access Point Names (APN) settings

You may need to check your APN settings in your device's main settings app to ensure you're connected to our network.

On Android devices, you can find it under your main Settings app > Mobile Networks > Access Point Names.

For iOS, you can find your APN settings under the main Settings app > Cellular > Cellular Data Options > Cellular Network.


Delete any third-party apps that might be interfering.

If you have any third-party messaging or calling apps, it might be interfering with your TextNow service. Try deleting those apps, or any recently installed apps, and try making a call again.


Reboot your device and/or reseat the SIM card.

Finally, if the above hasn't helped, power off your device and remove the SIM card. Then, reseat it so that it's sitting in the slot properly (you may have to refer to your device's manual for more specifics) and reboot your phone. 

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Comments

  • Avatar
    Taleah Joy

    So I did all of this I can't click on the I've done all these steps how do I get back to that?!

  • Avatar
    Valeria TextNow Support

    Hi Taleah,

    Thanks for following up with us! I have responded back to your email, so we may continue the investigation through there for better assistance :)

  • Avatar
    Gavin Roe

    I've tried all this but every time I try to chose a plan (when activating my sim card) it tell me to call for support please help.

  • Avatar
    Kristopher TextNow Support

    Hey Gavin,

    Thanks for getting in touch. If you are having continued issues activating the device I'd advise reaching out to our customer support team. Our chat support team can be reached during regular business hours directly on the website you'll just need to look for the chat window in the bottom right!

  • Avatar
    Quinnshay Bridges

    I have been repeating these steps over and over and nothing is working. It says it's as activated but my phone has no signal.

  • Avatar
    Valeria TextNow Support

    Hey Quinnshay,

    I'm sorry to hear about your connection issues! I'm afraid that this will require more probing and testing, and as such, would please ask that you speak with one of our live chat representatives (can be found on the bottom right hand side of this page) for further assistance!

    Thank you in advance :)

  • Avatar
    Pearlita Landry

    Uhh! This is frustrating! Tried all of the above and nothing! Now i cant even do the ive done all these steps lol.. Just too much

  • Avatar
    Valeria TextNow Support

    Hi Pearlita,

    I'm sorry to hear about your continued troubles! Everything on our end seems to check out, so would you please be able to speak with one of our live chat representatives for further testing/assistance?

    Thanks in advance!

  • Avatar
    Kevinkitty5569

    Help! I tried all the steps and can't get back to the step page help me please!

  • Avatar
    Kevinkitty5569

    Ok.... I did all of the steps like 1,000 times but still I can't get the text now network! Please help me!!!!

  • Avatar
    Jaron Gregory

    So, I have tried all of this a good 3-4 times now and none of this has helped. I know I have the APN settings put in right but it keeps saying it can't connect to the network, I even turned off the other messaging and calling apps in order to try again.

  • Avatar
    Coral Bursi

    Im having the same issues with my phone works over wifi and data is not working and i am having no help from a live chat the window sits there idol nobody responds

  • Avatar
    Taylor TextNow Support

    Hi Kevinkitty5569, Jaron & Carol,

    Please contact a live-chat agent during our business hours so we can help troubleshoot this further and get you up and running as quickly as possible! We're open between the following hours (Eastern Standard Time):

    * Monday - Friday 9am-9pm
    * Saturday - Sunday 9am-4pm

  • Avatar
    Coral Bursi

    You mean the the text bubble thats not available to me ? I sent a message when i firat tried to activate and ... All this time passed i still can only use service over wifi im not even enjoying going through all of this trouble.

  • Avatar
    Taylor TextNow Support

    Hi Coral,

    I'm sorry that chat hasn't been working out for you! Since it's live you must contact us during business hours, and there is a hold time as we answer chats in the order that we receive them. We're open now though so give it a shot via the link in the bottom right corner, or email us at orders@textnow.com.

    Edited by Taylor TextNow Support
  • Avatar
    Rhonda Coe

    Need assistance I have SIM Card but phone won't connect to network. Says front screen SIM is locked

  • Avatar
    Valeria TextNow Support

    Hey Rhonda!

    Sorry to hear about that, it may be due to your phone not being carrier-unlocked. Would you please be able to contact them in order to unlock your device, before we continue further with your activation?

    Thanks in advance!

  • Avatar
    Shatora Snead

    I did all the steps then it tells me they will send me a notification when it's done then I get an error message sim card activation failed

  • Avatar
    Valeria TextNow Support

    Hey Shatora! Sorry to hear of your issues.

    This looks like we'd need to look into it a little bit more with our technical support, so I would please encourage you to speak with one of our live chat representatives tomorrow during our business hours (9am-9pm EST).

    Hope we can help!