How to fix Galaxy S9 that keeps saying “Please insert SIM” and SMS, voice calls not working properly

Some #GalaxyS9 owners have contacted us regarding some network troubles they’ve encountered so we’ve decided to come up with yet another post. What you should remember in dealing with Android issues on Samsung Galaxy devices is that all troubleshooting are similar, regardless of circumstances. So, the solutions we provide below can also be applied to other non-S9 devices. We hope you’ll find this post helpful.

Today’s problem: Galaxy S9 keeps saying “Please insert SIM” and SMS and voice calls not working properly

Brand new S9. Day 1 in store it failed to see the SIM card 3 times. Each time it would allow me to make one or two texts and then suddenly say no network please insert SIM. Taking it out and replacing it each time helped and finally it stopped doing it. Fast forward 4 days later and no one can hear me on a call unless I put them on speaker phone. The sound on their end (on regular call mode) sounds like I’m pocket dialing them. If I swap on the same call to speaker, they can hear me and the pocket dial sound goes away. Interestingly enough, my voice to text doesn’t work either. I’m not exactly sure what day it all stopped working and I’m not even sure I made any calls the first 4 days (who talks on the phone anymore ?) But I do l know I used voice to text with no problem. I called my cellular provider (T-Mobile) and tech support had no idea what was up. Ultimately I’ll end back up at the store but I’m not sure when I can do that not to mention it makes my head spin thinking of setting up another phone. Ideas? — Jumpntango

Solution: Hi Jumpntango. There are two general reasons why your S9 keeps saying the SIM card is not inserted and calls and texts appears to be not working — a bad phone or a network-related issue.

Troubleshoot your Galaxy S9

In order to know if these problems are caused by an error on your phone, you need to do some troubleshooting. Below are the things that you must do.

Don’t forget, a lot of minor bugs are fixed by regularly restarting your device. If you don’t do this, be sure to restart your device before doing drastic troubleshooting steps.

Also, be sure to create a backup of your personal data before proceeding to avoid losing irreplaceable files. We suggest that you use Samsung Smart Switch to create a backup of your system.

Check signal reception

In case you didn’t know, having poor signal can result to poor network functionalities on your device. If your place is located in a poorly covered area, SMS and voice calling may become intermittent. To see if this is the case, go to a place with proven excellent signal coverage by your carrier and see how SMS and voice calling works. If the issues you mention above won’t occur in a location with good signal coverage, then you really don’t have a phone issue at all. All you need to do is to ensure that your S9 has good signal when sending or receiving SMS, or when making or receiving calls.

Clear cache partition

Clearing the cache should be the second proper troubleshooting step that you must do. This is to ensure that your S9 uses a fresh system cache. Sometimes, a corrupted system cache causes all sorts of problems so it’s good if you can kick your troubleshooting off by deleting the current cache.

To clear your S9’s system cache:

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Android logo displays, release all three keys.
  4. An ‘Installing system update’ message will show for 30 – 60 seconds before the Android system recovery menu options appear.
  5. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight wipe cache partition.
  6. Press Power key to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key to highlight yes, them and press the Power key to select.
  8. When the wipe cache partition is complete, Reboot system now is highlighted.
  9. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Toggle Airplane Mode on and off

At times, network issues are fixed by doing simple steps. One of such steps is toggling Airplane mode on and off. A lot of Android users have resolved all sorts of network trouble by doing this suggestion so you don’t want to skip it. It’s easy to do as well so it will won’t even take you a minute to do it. Here’s how:

  1. Pull down the screen from the top to access the status screen menu.
  2. Look for the Airplane Mode icon and tap it. This will enable Airplane Mode so let it be for about 5 seconds. Afterwards, tap on the Airplane Mode icon again to turn it off.
  3. Restart your S9.

Reset network settings

Resetting network settings should be the next thing that you want to do if wiping the cache partition and toggling Airplane Mode won’t help. By resetting network settings, you are, in effect wiping wifi, mobile data, Bluetooth settings. All your saved wifi network names and passwords, paired Bluetooth devices, and other mobile data settings will be deleted.

To reset network settings on your S9:

  1. Open Settings app.
  2. Tap General management.
  3. Tap Reset.
  4. Tap Reset network settings.
  5. Tap RESET SETTINGS button.

Check for third party app interference

Third party apps can sometimes cause problems with Android. To see if one of the downloaded apps is the main reason why the SIM card is malfunctioning and SMS and voice calls not working properly, try to boot your S9 to safe mode. When on safe mode, all third party apps will be blocked from running so if the problems won’t occur, you can assume an app is to blame. On safe mode, you should still be able to send and receive SMS and make and receive voice calls so make sure that you replicate the issue to know the difference. Be sure to let your phone run for at least 24 hours in this mode to notice any difference in network performance.

To restart to safe mode:

  1. Turn the device off.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the model name screen.
  3. When “SAMSUNG” appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see Safe Mode.
  8. Let your S8 run for at least 24 hours.

Safe mode won’t tell you what app is problematic. If you want to know the specific app causing your issue, you need to spend more time uninstalling and observing the phone. Basically, what you want to do is to uninstall an app, then replicate the problem in normal mode. If the issue remains, you have to proceed to another app and perform the same cycle.

Try another SIM card

Should the issue remain up to this point, you need to go back to T-Mobile store to ask for another SIM card. The current one may be defective, or your account may not be properly setup. When inserting the new SIM, make sure that it fits snugly in the tray to avoid poor connection with the connections in the motherboard.

Install carrier updates

Some network bugs are fixed by installing carrier-specific updates. Make sure to check Settings > Software update to see if there are pending updates that you can install.

Factory reset

The last thing that you can do on your end is to wipe the phone and return its software settings to defaults. If you haven’t tried this yet, make sure that you do it before contacting T-Mobile or your carrier. Here’s how to factory reset your S9:

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  4. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’.
  5. Press Power button to select.
  6. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  7. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  8. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  9. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Troubleshoot your network

Should the problems continue after doing all phone troubleshooting suggestions above, you need to work with your carrier to see what’s the problem on their side. Don’t go to T-Mobile store for this since you’ll be talking to sales people and not your carrier’s technical department. Contact T-Mobile by phone instead and let them walk your through their own troubleshooting steps.

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