Is FaceTime giving you trouble or not working after an update to iOS 12? Wondering how you can get FaceTime to work like it used to? If so, you are not alone! Several readers tell us that after updating to iOS 12, they cannot get FaceTime to work, make calls, or use features.
- 1 Quick Tips
- 2 What’s New in FaceTime with iOS 12?
- 3 FaceTime Activation Not Working?
- 4 Can’t Find the FaceTime Flip Camera Button in iOS 12?
- 5 Group FaceTime Not Working? Shows Waiting?
- 6 Is Your FaceTime Call Failing, Won’t Connect, or Continuously Connecting?
- 7 Getting “Poor Connection” Message?
- 8 Don’t See the Camera Button When on a FaceTime Call?
- 9 iPhone Stuck on FaceTime? Call Not Disconnecting and Hanging Up?
- 10 Other Issues Causing FaceTime Not Working?
Try These Quick Tips to get FaceTime to Work in iOS 12
- Toggle FaceTime off wait 20-30 seconds, and toggle it back on
- Tap your Apple ID and Sign Out and then Sign In again in using the same or a different Apple ID
- Add a restart after signing out if it doesn’t work the first try
- Group FaceTime is not in the initial release of iOS 12 but rather is scheduled for a future iOS 12 minor update later in the year
- If making a group FaceTime call, ensure all call members are using iOS 12 and higher or macOS Mojave and later
- Group FaceTime does not work with iOS 11 and earlier or macOS High Sierra and below
- Reset your network’s settings by going to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings
- For Poor Connections, stop using any effects or Animoji/Memoji to reduce bandwidth burden
- Seeing Error Occurred During Activation for FaceTime on Mac? Fix it today
- FaceTime Not Working in iOS 11?
- FaceTime Not Working on Mac OS X or macOS? How To Fix
What’s New in FaceTime with iOS 12?
The big news is that FaceTime finally supports Group FaceTime video and audio calls! We waited a long time for this feature, and with iOS 12, it finally arrives.
Unfortunately, Apple is still finessing group FaceTime so it doesn’t arrive just yet but is scheduled to launch later in the year in an iOS minor update. But we’re excited all the same!
With Group FaceTime, you can make calls with up to 32 people simultaneously–that’s a heck of a lot of folks!
Group FaceTime Isn’t iOS12’s Only FaceTime Improvement
In past years, FaceTime was the neglected child, especially when compared to Messages and iMessage. But no more! Apple totally redesigned FaceTime in iOS 12–it looks and feels different.
Here’s a round-up of all that new in FaceTime for iOS 12
- iMessage integration
- Start a FaceTime or Group FaceTime call directly from an iMessage conversation
- Trade your face for an Animoji or Memoji in FaceTime when talking to your friends and family
- And you can even add live filters to your Animoji and Memoji
- Fancy camera effects
- If you love using effects in the camera app, you’re sure to enjoy them in FaceTime and iMessage
- FaceTime now supports all those built-in filters, text effects, shapes and sticker packs
- Find Effects in the new FaceTime Menu
- Apple Watch Audio Support
- We can now use FaceTime audio on our Apple Watches and join in a group chat–all from the watch
- The new Walkie Talkie Watch app also utilizes FaceTime audio and uses your FaceTime account (Apple ID) to chat with friends and family
One Thing That’s Missing: Live Photos for FaceTime!
We don’t know why, but iOS 12 does not include the option to take a Live Photo in FaceTime in iOS 12.
After touting this feature in iOS 11, it seems odd to remove the live photo option during facetime calls. So for now, no more snapping the FaceTime screen to capture those moments in “real time.”
FaceTime Activation Not Working?
- Toggle FaceTime & iMessage OFF, wait for 30 seconds and toggle both on
- Go to Settings > FaceTime (and Messages > iMessage) > Toggle OFF then ON
- Sign out of your Apple ID in FaceTime. Go to Settings > FaceTime and tap your Apple ID. Choose Sign Out. Then sign back in with your Apple ID or an alternate Apple ID
- Check that your Apple ID lists your current iPhone’s phone number (not an old number or worse, a landline!)
- Turn FaceTime and iMessage off
- Go to Settings > Apple ID Profile > Name, Phone Number, Email > Reachable At
- Edit information if necessary so your iPhone and email is listed
- Once updated, toggle FaceTime OFF and Back ON
- Reset All Settings. Go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset All Settings
- Removes WiFi passwords and any personalized iPhone settings
For more tips, read our article on Activation problems with FaceTime and iMessage.
Can’t Find the FaceTime Flip Camera Button in iOS 12?
Using FaceTime after updating to iOS 12 and wondering how to change or flip cameras from back to front or vice-versa? You aren’t alone–it took us a bit of time to figure this one out too!
iOS 12’s FaceTime re-design sacrificed this essential feature to create what they consider a cleaner look to the interface. We disagree! Having the flip camera button on-screen isn’t wasteful, it’s essential.
We liked that in iOS 11 and earlier, that flip camera button showed up in the bottom-left corner of the screen, so changing camera was a breeze. Now it’s a multi-step process.
How To Flip Cameras in FaceTime Using iOS 12
- Open FaceTime
- Tap a Contact to Start a Call
- Once call initiates, tap the Menu Button
- Select the flip camera icon from the options available for FaceTime in iOS 12
- Use this same method to add different effects, mute a call, turn your camera off, and others
Group FaceTime Not Working? Shows Waiting?
We’re getting a little head start on Group FaceTime since it doesn’t release until later this year. Since earlier iOS 12 betas included group FT, we tested it out first-hand!
If you and your friends, family, or colleagues are trying to FaceTime together and it’s not working, check the following:
- All participants must use iOS 12 or later. Group FaceTime does not work with iOS 11 and below
- Anyone using iOS 11 or lower shows up greyed out
- Everyone on the call must use an Apple device. You cannot call an Android device from FaceTime
- Don’t use any effects including Animoji and Memoji, filters, stickers, shapes, and text
How To Correctly Make a Group FaceTime Call
- Open up the FaceTime app
- Tap on the “+” icon in the upper right corner
- In the “To” field, type in a name, phone number, or use the + symbol to open your Contacts
- Continue typing in all the names you want on the call
- When done, tap on either the audio or the video button to place the call
- All recipients get a message on their devices that you want to FaceTime
Make a Group FaceTime Call in iMessage
It’s often easier to open a previous group iMessage conversation and start your Group FaceTime call there
- Open up a group iMessage chat
- Or create a new one
- At the top of your screen, tap on the profile icons
- Choose FaceTime or Audio to start a call
- Audio calls may show an additional selection for Voice Call or FaceTime Audio
- Choose FaceTime Audio
- Voice Calls use your phone carrier
Place a group FaceTime with FaceTime on Mac
- Open FaceTime on your Mac
- Enter the names or numbers the people you want to call
- Enter up to 32 total callers
- Click Video or Audio to place your FaceTime call
Is Your FaceTime Call Failing, Won’t Connect, or Continuously Connecting?
If you are not able to connect to FaceTime without FaceTime ever opening a session, try reactivating your account
- Go to Settings > FaceTime and toggle the switch OFF
- Wait a few moments, and then toggle it back ON
- A message appears “waiting for activation”
- Enter your Apple ID and passcode if needed
If that doesn’t work, reset your WiFi network
- Go to Settings > General > Reset and select Reset Network Settings
- This process returns your network settings back to factory defaults, so you must enter your WiFi password(s) again
For Failing FaceTime Calls
- Try calling from your FaceTime call log (if listed) instead of initiating a new call
- Call from iMessage
- Open Messages App
- Search for a previous conversation with the person you want to call
- Open the message thread
- Tap the person icon or picture in the top center
- For a video call, select FaceTime from the options
- For an audio call, select Audio
- Choose your call method: Voice Call (using your carrier) or FaceTime audio
Getting “Poor Connection” Message?
Some of the enhancements of iOS 12, like Group FaceTime and using Animoji or Memoji, also increase the amount of internet bandwidth your iPhone or device needs.
If Facetime can’t send and receive data fast enough to keep up with your device’s demand, the video lags, is choppy and shows other symptoms of a poor connection.
Consequently, some folks see the “Poor Connection” notice while they are actively using FaceTime.
If you see this message, try these remedies
- Remove any effects like Animoji and Memoji, filters, stickers, shapes, and text
- If on a group call and you enlarged any person’s tile to its biggest possible size, tap it to go back to the standard tile size
- Go to Settings > WiFi and turn it Off. Wait 20-30 seconds and then turn it back on and choose your network
- Switch to a different WiFi network, preferably 5GHz, or connect via LTE if available
- Renew your IP Address. Launch Settings > WiFi > Tap the “i” button > Choose Renew Lease
- Toggle FaceTime off in Settings > FaceTime, wait 30 seconds, and toggle back on
- Reset network settings by going to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings
- Restart or reset your WiFi Router (see manufacturer’s instructions)
- If you suspect it’s a router issue, contact your internet service provider or check with the router manufacturer
- Force close the FaceTime app by double pressing Home or swiping up the Gesture Bar, then swiping the FaceTime App Preview up towards the top of your screen to close. Then relaunch FaceTime
- Delete the FaceTime app and reinstall it
- With iOS 11 and above, you can also offload the FaceTime app and then reinstall it
- Offloading an app preserves its data and documents
Don’t See the Camera Button When on a FaceTime Call?
Wondering just how to take a photo during a FaceTime call on iOS 12?
As mentioned, iOS 12 removed the Live Photos feature on FaceTime. Yes, we know quite a lot of folks loved that feature, so we’re hoping to see it return soon.
In the meantime, the best workaround is to snap a screenshot. However, screenshots are never live images–they are static images by default.
iPhone Stuck on FaceTime? Call Not Disconnecting and Hanging Up?
Some users note that their FaceTime calls are not hanging up, even when pressing the red circled x to end the call.
After tapping end call, nothing happens, and people still see and/or hear the person they’ve called. Additionally, their home screen still shows the live call indicator (a green bar) at the top left.
This problem also occurs on macOS Mojave.
For iPhones and iDevices, the only method that works is restarting your device via the Settings App
- Go to Settings > General
- Scroll all the way down and tap Shut Down
- Power your device back on
At this time, this restart is the only way to end the call and make another Facetime call.
- Open Activity Monitor (in Applications > Utilities or use spotlight search)
- Click on the CPU tab
- Locate and select FaceTime (use the search bar if needed)
- Press the grey X to force FaceTime to quit or double click on FaceTime and choose force quit from the pop-up message