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AT&T’s iPhone 5 Isn’t Allowing Simultaneous Voice & Data Usage

Our very own, Mandy Wiltse, ran across an interesting problem with her iPhone 5 the past two days. While on the phone with someone, she attempted to check her email only to be greeted with a disturbing message: “Cannot get mail. A data connection cannot be established since a call is currently active.”

Wait, what? But she’s an AT&T customer, that is supposed to be one of the perks of having an iPhone with AT&T!

When she called me to share her dismay, I admitted it was weird, but told her it must have just been some kind of fluke, as I had her try to send me an iMessage and it worked. Fast forward to today, she experienced the same exact issue. Fluke? I think not. Weird? Yes, very.

What’s even weirder is that the AT&T signal status when she’s in the phone call screen says she’s using AT&T 4G with 4 bars, however, as soon as she switches into the Mail or iMessage app, the 4G icon disappears. We did some searching and found a thread over at MacRumors where someone else seems be experiencing the same exact problem and has yet to find a solution.

It’s worth noting that this has been a sporadic issue — it happens sometimes, but not always.  Regardless, it’s annoying and it sounds like we are going to have to give AT&T a call tomorrow. We’ll report back as we find out more. In the mean time, if you have any ideas or suggestions, feel free to post them in the comments.

We have included some screenshots below.

Update: We are hearing from people that this may be a software bug in iOS that occurs when the phone is switching from LTE to 3G for data while on a phone call.  This might explain the strange issue, however, it doesn’t appear that Mandy was on LTE when the error message popped up, though it may just be a bug in iOS regardless.

Update 2: We spoke with an Apple representative who told us that they have been receiving calls about this issue, so it appears to be a bit more widespread than just Mandy’s iPhone 5.  The Apple rep said that they will be notifying the engineering team to give them a heads up about the issue for it to be looked into further.

Att iphone 5 no voice data
Att iphone 5 no imessage

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— Jeff Weisbein

Jeff is the founder & CEO of BestTechie. He has over 10 years of experience working with technology and building businesses. He loves to travel and listen to music.

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  1. Thank you for paying attention to this I travel for a living and unless I’m in an lte area I can almost never use data while on a call. I hope you stay on it and we get answers!

  2. Electricfiddle says:

    Any news? I am having the same problem.

  3. I’ve been having this issue lately, usually in a specific town only….everywhere else data works fine when on a phone call! hmmmm

  4. Ben southward says:

    I’ve noticed this for a few days now with att
    Just switched to Verizon. Having the same issue
    Using a iPhone 6 Plus. Sounds like an apple issue

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