I recently received an iPhone 3G from a friend. She took out her SIM card, so I don't have a SIM on my iPhone. I heard that you can now text on iMessage using your email instead of a phone number. I went to Settings > Messages, and I put in my email address, but my friend's number is on top. I'm tying to delete it, but I can't. I also have no SIM.

  • And first of all it is not iPhone 3G that you've received. It must be 3GS and up because you need iOS 5 for iMessages and 3g is capped at iOS 4
    – iskra
    Commented Apr 17, 2012 at 1:15

1 Answer 1


This is the same set of steps you would use if you had a sim card, it's more about clearing the account that device has registered with the iMessage service.

Try to turn off iMessage completely, totally log out of the system in Settings > Messages. When you re-enable it, ensure you log in with your own Apple ID. At this point, you should be able to message to your registered email address.

If that doesn't work, you may need to back everything up and restore the device. This is somewhat problematic without a SIM card, since you may get stuck at activation if you don't at least have an inactive SIM from the proper carrier.

  • Maybe the best summary of all the various links and stories is thenextweb.com/apple/2012/02/02/… - I've experienced this too. Disabling then re-enabling iMessage appears to be the right fix.
    – user3117
    Commented Apr 1, 2012 at 22:29

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