Why Does My iPhone Go Straight To Voicemail? Here’s The Fix!

Your friends are trying to call you, but they can’t get through. Their iPhones ring when you call them, so why doesn’t yours? In this article, I’ll explain why your iPhone goes straight to voicemail when someone calls and how to fix the problem for good.

Why Does My iPhone Go Straight To Voicemail When Someone Calls?

Your iPhone typically goes straight to voicemail because your iPhone has no service, Do Not Disturb is turned on, or a Carrier Settings update is available. We’ll help you identify and fix the real problem below.

No Service / Airplane Mode

When your iPhone is too far away to connect to cell towers, or when it’s cut off from the outside world with Airplane Mode, all calls go straight to voicemail because your iPhone isn’t connected to the cellular network.

Open Settings and look at the switch next to Airplane Mode. If Airplane Mode is on, turn it off. If Airplane Mode is off, tap the switch to turn it on. Wait a few seconds, then tap the switch again to turn off Airplane Mode.

make sure airplane mode is off

Do Not Disturb

When your iPhone is locked (the screen is off), Do Not Disturb silences all incoming calls, text message notifications, and alerts on your iPhone. Unlike silent mode, Do Not Disturb sends incoming calls straight to voicemail.

To turn off Do Not Disturb, open Control Center by swiping down from the upper right-hand corner of the screen (iPhones with Face ID) or up from the very bottom of the screen (iPhones without Face ID). Look for the Moon icon. If it’s white and purple, Do Not Disturb is on. Tap the icon to turn if off.

do not disturb off vs on in iphone control center

How Did Do Not Disturb Get Turned On In The First Place?

Open Settings and tap Focus -> Do Not Disturb. If your iPhone is running iOS 14 or older, open Settings and tap Do Not Disturb. Is Scheduled turned on? If so, your iPhone will automatically turn Do Not Disturb on and off when you go to sleep.

do not disturb scheduled ios 15

Do Not Disturb While Driving & Other Focuses

Do Not Disturb While Driving was introduced with iOS 11. With iOS 15, Apple introduced Focus, which houses Do Not Disturb, Do Not Disturb While Driving, and more. When Do Not Disturb While Driving or another Focus is on, your iPhone may go straight to voicemail.

If your iPhone is running iOS 15, swipe down from the upper right-hand corner of the screen (iPhones with Face ID) or up from the very bottom of the screen (iPhones without Face ID) to open Control Center.  Look for the Focus button in Control Center. If a Focus is on, tap on the icon to turn it off.

driving focus on ios 15

If your iPhone is running iOS 14 or older, open Settings and tap Do Not Disturb. Tap Activate under Do Not Disturb While Driving to see when the feature turns on. When set to Automatically, Do Not Disturb While Driving will turn on any time your iPhone thinks you’re driving. You can turn off Do Not Disturb While Driving by unlocking your iPhone and tapping I’m Not Driving.

Customizing Call Settings For Focus

iOS 15 allows you to customize Focus settings so calls don’t go directly to voicemail when a Focus is turned on. Open Settings and tap Focus -> Phone Calls. Here, you have a few options.

First, if you’d like calls from the same person within three minutes to not be silenced, leave the switch at the top of the screen on. Then, select if you’d like to receive calls from Everyone, No One, or your Favorites when a Focus is on.

focus phone call settings

Announce Calls

Some readers have reported a new solution that appeared in a recent version of iOS: Change Announce Calls to Always. Go to Settings -> Phone -> Announce Calls, tap Always, and give it a try.

always announce calls on iphone

Turn The Ringer Volume All The Way Up

It’s possible your iPhone ringer is silent, making you think that calls are going straight to voicemail since you can’t hear them when they come in. Try turning your ringer volume all the way up to see if that’s the issue you’re experiencing.

Open Settings and tap Sounds & Haptics. Drag the slider under Ringers and Alerts all the way to the right. You’ll be able to hear how loudly your iPhone will ring when you finishing adjusting the slider.

turn up ringer and alerts slider

Have someone call your iPhone after trying this to see if the problem is resolved. If the call goes straight to voicemail, move onto the next step.

Check For A Carrier Settings Update

If your calls go straight to voicemail, you may need to update the carrier settings on your iPhone. Carrier settings are what allows your iPhone to connect to your carrier’s wireless network.

If your iPhone’s carrier settings are out of date, it may have trouble connecting to your carrier’s network, which could cause incoming phone calls to go straight to your voicemail.

To check for a Carrier Settings Update, open the Settings app and tap General -> About. If a carrier settings update is available, an alert will appear on your iPhone’s display that says “Carrier Settings Update“. If this alert appears on your iPhone, tap Update.

update carrier settings on iphone

Turn Off Silence Unknown Callers

Silence Unknown Callers will send phone calls from from unknown numbers directly to voicemail. The call will show up in the Recents tab in Phone even though it goes straight to voicemail.

Open Settings and tap Phone. Turn off the switch next to Silence Unknown Callers to turn this setting off.

turn off silence unknown callers on iphone

Turn Off Call Forwarding

Call Forwarding forwards your calls to a different phone number if you don’t or can’t answer them. There’s also call forwarding unconditional, which will forward your calls without allowing your iPhone to ring or give you the opportunity to answer it. It’s possible your iPhone is going straight to voicemail because of Call Forwarding.

Open Settings and tap Phone -> Call Forwarding. Turn off the switch next to Call Forwarding.

Note: You may not see this setting on your iPhone if your carrier does not support call forwarding.

Update Your iPhone

Updating your iPhone can sometimes fix software bugs, especially if a modem update is included with the iOS update. Open Settings and tap General -> Software Update. Tap Download and Install or Install Now if an iOS update is available.

update to ios 14.4

Uninstall Spam Blocking Apps

Spam blocking apps like RoboKiller can be extremely useful. However, they’ll sometimes block calls you actually want to receive. Try uninstalling any spam blocking apps on your iPhone to see if that fixes the problem.

Press and hold on the app icon until the quick action menu opens. Then, tap Remove App -> Delete App -> Delete.

delete slack on iphone

If this fixed the problem for you, check out our video about other ways to block spam calls on your iPhone.

Contact Your Carrier

There is a chance that you may need to contact your cell carrier about an issue with service for missed or dropped calls. If it becomes a regular occurrence that isn’t fixed by any of the troubleshooting steps in this article, you may need to contact your provider to see if there is any known issues or if there is a tower update that needs to be done on their end.

Is It Time To Switch Wireless Carriers?

If you’re fed up with the constant problems with your wireless carrier, you may want to consider switching. You’ll often save a lot of money when you do! Check UpPhone’s tool to compare cell phone plans from every wireless carrier in the United States.

You’re Back On The Grid

Your iPhone is ringing again and your calls aren’t going straight to voicemail. Do Not Disturb is a feature that comes in handy when you’re asleep, but it can cause some serious headaches if you don’t know how to use it. Save your friends and family similar headaches by sharing this article on social media so they can also learn why their iPhone goes straight to voicemail!

About Author

I'm a former Apple employee and the founder of Payette Forward, and I'm here to help you with your iPhone.

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8 months ago

My iPhone 14 started going directly to voicemail and does not ring at all. I upgraded to IOS 17.1 but it did not help. Suggestions?

1 year ago

There is no “call forwarding” feature found on my iphone se. So couldn’t turn it off. So the mystery as to why unknown callers are being silenced and sent to voicemail even when “silence unknown callers” is turned off remains unsolved. Will call service provider.

Morton Shuman
1 year ago

I can’t keep up with you on 46 ways to
turn off I phone settings on you tube
Do you have a written copy so I can take
my time. ?

1 year ago

I set my I phone down and have called it but after calling it a few times now it just goes to voice mail. and so I cannot find it. How do I get it to ring so I can find it

1 year ago

Thanks Fixed.

nancy merritt neely
1 year ago

Starting this morning every inbound call and outbound call never ringed and went straight to voicemail. No updates needed and we have followed everything we can find on internet,

8 months ago

Same thing is happening to me and my iPhone. Have you found a fix?

dallas denter
1 year ago

i phone minio 12 does not recive calls goes into voice box

1 year ago

Thank you, even though none of your solutions worked. What worked for me was turning off the phone and turn it back on, you might want to add it to your list.

1 year ago

What fixed my phone was actually not my phone but my Apple Watch being on do not disturb. Turned that off and good to go.

1 year ago
Reply to  Daniel

Thanks Daniel! Never occurred to me.

1 year ago

Turned off VoLTE and this seems to have solved calls going directly to voicemail!

1 year ago

Turned of VoLTE and it seems to have solved my random calls going to voicemail!

Last edited 1 year ago by Dani
1 year ago

My iPhone 11pro calls go straight to voicemail after upgrading to ios16, have tried all tips/suggestions below to no avail anything new to suggest? thanks

1 year ago

Hi have tried all the tips/suggestions listed below and my iPhone 11 pro on ios16.4 is still sending calls directly to voicemail any new ideas??

1 year ago

Thank you!!

1 year ago

Thanks David, your tips helped to get my iphone working correctly again!

1 year ago

Somehow the Do Not Disturb setting was ON – thank you for these all tips on what to do!

1 year ago
Reply to  Linda

My ios16 update somehow turned on ‘do not disturb’ Thanks Linda

1 year ago

I tried all of the suggestions to fix my calls going directly to voicemail. None of the suggestions helped. Must be another reason other than what you suggest.
I am using Lycamobile for last 1 year on Iphone 13 pro and suddenly for last 1 month no incoming call.
akk options tried but no use

1 year ago

Bishwanath, Same situation with me (ditto). Did you resolve it or still living with it?

1 year ago

I recently changed carriers and for some reason, my calls are not going through or going straight to voicemail and there is no indication that there is a voicemail. Can you help me?

1 year ago

thank you for your help. You made it very easy to follow

1 year ago

Thank you!!! I’m receiving calls again.

1 year ago

I tried all of the suggestions to fix my calls going directly to voicemail. None of the suggestions helped. Must be another reason other than what you suggest.

1 year ago
Reply to  Karen

Update. I found the solution. I had to turn my phone off. After 20 seconds I turned it back on the problem was resolved.

1 year ago

I have literally been going back and fourth with my carrier for 9 months, even upgraded my iPhone and SIM card. In the end it was because my iPhone atomically goes in to Personal Focus when at home and only allows calls from “favourites”, with no one attached to the list – so turning that off finally worked! Thank you!

1 year ago

I had this issue. Tried all these steps and nothing worked. Finally deleted some call-blocking apps meant to stop spam. For some reason the person who was trying to call me was being blocked. All worked well after that

1 year ago

I am subscribed to palette forward on YouTube, I love your channel! my problem is calls going to voicemail and it started after I updated my iPhone 12 to iOS 16.0. I hope you can help me I have tried everything

1 year ago
Reply to  Diana

The dumb personal settings in focus messed mine up. I had to delete it.

1 year ago

My phone goes straight to voicemail.

Cathy Cossey
1 year ago

I’m not sure what fixed it but i followed your instructions to correct calls that were being sent directly to voicemail and it worked. I’ve had issues with the iphone 11 a few times. Your site was helpful and I was able to sidestep a visit to the Apple store Thank you for your web site!,

Jane Morris
1 year ago

I fixed my i phone after being abroad on another server by going to settings and resetting Network Server

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