This is not the first time I’ve had this problem, nor is it the least frustrating time I’ve had this problem, as the first time this happened to me I fixed it within twenty minutes. I’ve read countless articles and forums with people who have had the same problem, and I have at no point found a solution that works this time, and the people at Tracfone are no help either. Here are the facts: I use Tracfone. I just bought a new factory unlocked iPhone 6s off of Ebay from a well known and reviewed seller. Last night I transferred my service from my old iPhone 6 to this new phone; new sim card, called tracfone, etc. The works. Today I once again ran into the dreaded “could not activate cellular data” message, even though last night I made a successful call on my phone and my number and service have transferred. The message says “you are not subscribed to a cellular data service”, which is a message I haven’t gotten before. Upon calling Tracfone and sitting on the phone with a rep for over two hours, I was told this was not something Tracfone could fix, and I would need to call Apple instead. He had me try to configure my APN settings to no avail, as even though my phone tells me I have no profiles downloaded, trying to configure the APN just gives me a message saying something about not being able to have more than one config at once.

If anyone has any solution at all I’m willing to give it a try. Honestly, anything to not have to sit on the phone with a Tracfone rep for another two hours. Please. Spare me.

1 Answer 1


Your carrier is passing the buck. Apple has nothing to do with cellular activation unless you buy the phone directly from Apple. The carrier should know that and treat you to correct explanations.

Try reviewing the swappa article on IMEI / MEID / ESN

You are likely buying blocked devices and should contact the seller if possible to arrange return and refund unless the listing says clearly these are for parts and not operational. Ebay might be of help if you can’t get the seller to assist or explain the device isn’t blocked if your research shows the issue is a blocked device.

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