What Does It Mean When Your Phone is SOS?

Discover what it means when your phone is in SOS mode. Learn about emergency calls, network issues, IMEI blocking, and low signal strength.


When your phone displays the ‘SOS’ message, it can leave you feeling puzzled and worried. But what does it actually mean?

Emergency Calls Only

One of the most common reasons why your phone may show ‘SOS’ is that it has lost connection to your mobile network and can only make emergency calls. This could be due to poor network coverage or a problem with your SIM card.

Network Issues

It’s possible that there is a temporary issue with your carrier’s network, preventing your phone from connecting to it properly. In such cases, restarting your phone or manually selecting a network might help resolve the problem.

IMEI Blocking

If your phone is displaying ‘SOS’ constantly, it could be a sign that your device has been reported as lost or stolen, and its IMEI number has been blocked by your network provider for security reasons.

Low Signal Strength

When your phone is struggling to find a strong signal, it may switch to Emergency Calls Only mode, resulting in the ‘SOS’ message. This could happen in areas with poor network coverage or when you are underground.

Case Studies

Julie was hiking in a remote forest when her phone suddenly showed ‘SOS’. She realized that she had no signal and had to climb to higher ground to make a call.

Mike’s phone kept displaying ‘SOS’ even in his usual locations. After contacting his carrier, he found out that his SIM card was faulty and needed to be replaced.


  • According to a study, 30% of emergency calls are made using mobile phones with ‘SOS’ mode.
  • Network-related issues account for 50% of cases where phones display ‘SOS’.

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