This iPhone Bug Is Deactivating Phone Numbers. Here's What We Know So Far

Certain iPhone owners using T-Mobile's cellular service are experiencing a loss of access to iMessage and Facetime if they run into a specific eSIM bug. According to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, as reported by MacRumors, the only way to reactivate your iMessage or Facetime in the case that this bug does occur is to completely replace your physical SIM card. 

Gurman originally reported the bug in a series of tweets, saying, "There is a very nasty iPhone and T-Mobile bug where iMessage and FaceTime for a device's phone number will randomly deactivate and there is no way to reactivate it... For those asking, this issue for sure has existed on iOS 15.4, 15.5, and 15.6 beta 1. Potentially earlier too, but that's all I can confirm right now."

It doesn't sound like any other workarounds have been discovered or introduced directly by T-Mobile or Apple, and neither company has yet to address the issue publicly.

How to replace your T-Mobile eSIM on iPhone

To remove and replace a physical SIM card, all you'll need is the SIM tool that came with your iPhone. It's a tiny pin tool, and it's entirely possible that you never removed said tool from its original box when you first purchased the device. In any case, you may want to make sure you're doing this after you have a replacement SIM card in your possession to avoid any interruption in service.

Once you have a new physical SIM card in your possession, you'll need to know what your phone's EID number is. Any T-Mobile representative will likely ask you for this information, and you can locate it by navigating to Settings -> General -> About on your iPhone. From here, scroll down to the bottom of the page to find your iPhone's unique EID number, and a T-Mobile representative should be able to activate a new SIM card with ease.

T-Mobile offers a set of troubleshooting instructions for those who are experiencing difficulties with their eSIM cards on various Apple devices, including iPhone. T-Mobile suggests that you should ensure that your iPhone is updated to the latest version of iOS (currently 15.4.1) before you attempt to do anything with your physical SIM card or digital eSIM service. T-Mobile also suggests that you'll need an unlocked phone, or a phone purchased directly from T-Mobile. 

Mark Gurman also reported via Twitter that you can delete your eSIM account and create a new account from scratch. This is a process that you may want to do with some oversight from a T-Mobile representative since there's always a chance that you can mess something up on the service side.