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"Could not activate cellular data network" - AT&T / iPhone 4S


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Apr 26, 2015
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Hi everyone,

it's my first time posting something here so I'd like to introduce myself real quick. My name is Chris, 23, from Germany, but I currently live in the US (Colorado). I searched this forum and googled endless times, but I couldn't fix the problem and it's driving me nuts.

Here's what I have:
iPhone 4S
iOS 8.3 (12F70)
Carrier: AT&T (1,5GB Data)
Carrier setting: AT&T 19.1
Modem Firmware: 5.4.00
NO Jailbreak

The problem:
I always had the 25$ plan: No data, but text and phone calls. Since I want to a road trip and don't want to be lost in the middle of nowhere, I decided to change my phone plan and get some data. If I deactivate my WiFi, I theoretically should have access to internet. However, every time I use Safari, the Weather app or anything else I get the following error: "Could not activate cellular data network. You are not subscribed to a cellular data service." Once I hit okay, Safari says "Safari cannot open the page because your iPhone is not connected to the Internet". Frustrating, because I have 1.5 GB waiting for me to be used.

What I did/tried:
First thing: I called AT&T and asked them if everything is okay with my phone. They checked and gave me an okay. My account was charged, I got confirmation texts and I can text and call. Data is available as well.

Second thing: I went to the AT&T store, described my problem and we tried various things: Resetting the network settings, restarting the phone, deactivate cellular data, turn the phone off to wait a couple minutes, then turn everything back on. We also tried the SIM in a different phone and it worked there... This means: The problem is definitely my phone and not the carrier!

Third thing: I went to the apple store and asked them for help: They couldn't. They just told me to update my iOS and we tried resetting the network settings.

Fourth thing: I updated my phone to the newest iOS, reset the network settings, shutting my phone down and turn it back on, deactivating and reactivating cellular data and finally, restoring my whole phone. Guess what, still doesn't work!

That's why I am asking you guys. Is there anything that I forgot? Anything I have missed? Is it that my phone is from Germany (my friend doesn't have the problem with a German Samsung :O)? Can you help me at all?

Thanks a lot for trying and reading through this. I appreciate any help!
Welcome to iPhoneForums, Chris!

Just a few suggestions, maybe one of them will help. Sorry, if you've already looked at these, but they were not mentioned in your post:

On my Austrian iPhone, I had to enter usernames, passwords and other settings for my cellular data manually. I found them on my carrier's site, and entered them in Settings - Cellular - Cellular Data Network. It's possible that you have to do something similar.

After updating, reset your iPhone. This won't remove data or change settings. To reset, press and hold Home and Power button to show the multitask bar. Let go of both. Your iPhone will power up on it's own.
Hi J.A.

Thanks for your help and your suggestions! Unfortunately, I cannot find "Celluar Data Network" in the cellular settings. I just have the switch for Cellular Data, Data Roaming and the option to set up a personal hotspot. Other than that it's just statistics.

I will try resetting my phone and will let you know if it worked.

Too bad!

On my iPhone, it's here:

Is there a profile installed on your device? Look at Settings - General -Profile.

This one was installed by my carrier. It also sets up cellular data.

It's nice to read German one in a while :)I don't have the cellular data network button, but I found that I still have my German profile installed on my phone "O2 Post-Paid". Should I delete it?
You need the profile from AT & T there, maybe that's why it's not connecting. Delete the German profile.

Contact AT&T once more, so they can send you the link to install their profile.
Dear J.A.

You saved my day. I deleted the profile and now it's working fine, even without installing the AT&T profile. Vielen Dank! Thread can be closed.
Es war mir ein Vergnügen! :)

We leave the threads open when they're solved. They could help another member with a similar problem.