What Does “User Busy” on iPhone Mean? (Everything You Need to Know)

We’ve all had times when we needed to reach out to our friends and family and heard the ‘busy signal.’ Sometimes we get lucky with a second attempt, but it becomes frustrating and annoying when we constantly receive the “user busy” signal after multiple call attempts.

“User Busy” notification occurs for several reasons and usually depends on the circumstances of the person at the other end of the line.

The “User Busy” notification on our screen leaves questions in our minds. What does user Busy mean? Is my message being ignored? What do I do now?

We often ask ourselves these questions, and when we can’t find any answer, we get frustrated and ponder what to do. This post will uncover all you need to know about “User Busy” on iPhone.


What Does “User Busy” on an iPhone Mean?

When trying to make a call on your iPhone and you receive the “user busy” notification, the most common possibility is that the person you’re trying to call is already on another call or they have their Do Not Disturb turned On.

It could also mean that the person you’re trying to call is out of range of a cellular signal.

When you receive a “user busy” notification after trying to make a FaceTime call, it might be that the person you’re trying to reach doesn’t have FaceTime set up on their device or they accidentally declined your call.

It’s always advisable to relax and call back after some time if you keep getting user-busy errors when trying to reach someone.

Reasons Why You Might Get The “User Busy” iPhone Message

The reasons one receives “user busy” errors on an iPhone are pretty simple and logical.

Here’s a list of some of the most prevalent causes of User Busy on iPhone

1. The User is on a Call with Someone else

If you’re trying to reach out to someone and you keep receiving the “user busy” message, then there’s a high possibility that the person you’re trying to contact is on a call with someone else. So it’s advisable to wait for a while before getting them again.

2. The user Turned on Do Not Disturb

Do Not Disturb is a smartphone feature that silences all incoming calls, text messages, and other notifications. This feature is handy when trying to rest or in a serious meeting.

Once a person’s phone is on Do Not Disturb, it will be challenging to get through to them. So instead, you’ll receive a User Busy message anytime you try calling them.

You can turn on Do Not Disturb mode to work all day or schedule it to turn on and off automatically at certain times. To enable/disable DND (Do Not Disturb), go to Settings and see the Do Not Disturb option among the list of other options. Then, toggle the switch to either enable/disable the feature.

If you want to schedule, Do Not Disturb mode, tap the “Scheduled” option, and then select the days and times you want the feature to be enabled. 

3. Sleep Mode

If you need to get in touch with someone and their device is in sleep mode, you’ll most likely get a “user busy” message when you call them; This happens because Sleep Mode puts your device into a sleep mode where only essential apps are allowed to run. The mode disables features like push notifications and background refresh.

4. The Person you’re trying to call has Call Forwarding Enabled

If you’re trying to call someone and you keep receiving user busy notifications, then it could be that the person you’re trying to contact has call forwarding enabled on their device.

The call-forwarding feature can be pretty handy sometimes, but you must never forget to disable it to make your device available to those trying to call you. To access the call waiting for feature, go to Settings, scroll down to phone, and tap “call forwarding,” You can toggle the option to enable or disable it.

5. The Person you’re trying to call has blocked your number

Another possibility that you may receive a “user busy” message when you try to call someone is that they might have blocked your number. Once someone block’s your number, you won’t be able to contact them because anytime you call them, you’ll either receive a “user, busy” message or your call will go directly to voicemail.

6. The Person you’re trying to call doesn’t have network coverage

If the person you’re trying to reach has network issues, you’ll most likely receive a “user busy” notification when you try to contact them. 

What To Do When You Get ‘User Busy’ iPhone Message

When you try calling someone on your iPhone but keep getting the user busy message, there are a few things you can do to try reaching out to do. Here’s a list of what to do when you get a ‘user busy’ message on your iPhone.

1. Try calling that person again after some time

If you try to call someone and you get the User Busy message, then the most likely possibility is that they’re on a call with someone else. In this case, you need to relax and call them back after a few minutes.

2. Send a message

Once you keep getting the user busy message after trying to call someone multiple times, it could be that they’re intentionally avoiding your calls, and it’s best to send them a text message instead.

You can tell if someone is busy by texting them and waiting to see if they’ll read your text or if it gets delivered on iMessage.

3. Call your mobile provider

Frequently we always want to believe that when we receive a user’s busy message, it has to be an error on the receiver’s end. But that’s not often the case, as there are times when we may get a “user busy” notification when there’s an issue with our network provider.

If you keep getting the “user busy” notification when you call someone, you can try contacting your network provider through a landline to tell them to check their system to speed up the process.

4. Reinput your SIM card and do a soft reset on your iPhone

You can resolve user busy error messages by taking out your SIM Card and inputting it back into your device, after which you can do a soft reset on your iPhone. However, you must note that a soft reset with the iPhone isn’t the same as a factory reset, as these are two different things.

Does ‘User Busy’ Mean Blocked on iPhone?

One common belief among iPhone users is that once you receive the user’s busy message when you call someone, it’s a sign that the person blocked you.

But that’s not true. User busy isn’t an indication that someone blocked you. It’s simply an indication that the person you’re trying to call is on another call or they have Do Not Disturb turned on.

There are many ways to check if someone blocked you, usually through Carrier settings. For example, user busy indicates that the person you’re trying to call is temporarily unavailable and not permanently out of reach.

If the notification persists, you can try contacting them in another way, such as by text message or using someone else’s phone to call them.


How Do I Contact Someone With Their Phone Off

The best way to get in touch with someone when their device is off is to leave a text message. iPhone users can send messages using the Message App pre-installed on every iPhone. To send a message with a messaging app, go to the messaging app and type in your message, and tap on “Send.”

Alternatively, you can send a message using iMessage, a free messaging service that works with iPhones and iPads.

To send a text via iMessage,

• open the Message app

• Tap on the “Compose Message” button and type in the phone number or email address of the person you want to message 

• Click on the blue “I” icon next to the box where you typed your message; This will turn your message into an iMessage, and you can add images, videos, or other forms of media before sending the message.

What Should I Do When I Hear “Leave A Message” on iPhone

What does it mean when we call and hear a recording telling us to leave a message? Most of us have asked this question, and we still need clarification anytime we’re asked to leave a message. 

The next time you receive a leave-a-message notification, state your name and number clearly, so the person can return your call when they’re less busy. You may also want to say the reason for calling as well.

How to Set Up “User Busy” Message on iPhone

If you frequently receive the “user busy” message whenever you call someone and feel the need to show someone else the “User Busy” warning when they call you, here’s all you need to do.

Turn on Do Not Disturb on Your iPhone. 

The method of enabling Do Not Disturb varies depending on the version of iOS you’re using.

For iOS 15 users,

• Go to Settings

• Select Focus

• Choose Do Not Disturb

• Customize the notification to suit your preference and activate it

You can also turn on Do Not Disturb by entering the Control Center and selecting Focus, then locate DND and tap to turn it on.

For iOS 14 users, 

• Go to Settings

• Go to Do Not Disturb Mode

• Tap to turn it on. And you can also set a timer for it to come on.

Alternatively, you can turn on DND by selecting the crescent moon icon in the Control Center’s panel.

How to Remove “User Busy” on iPhone

If you always get complaints from friends who try to call you but can’t get in touch with you, you may need to eliminate potential causes.

Here are a few things to try your hands on.

Check Do Not Disturb Settings

Do Not Disturb is a handy tool to minimize distractions when you need to focus. But this tool also prevents all incoming calls and text messages from coming in.

Apart from set exceptions, you won’t receive disruptive notifications while ‘do not disturb’ remains on.

It will help if you disable the Do Not Disturb to enable you to receive calls from those trying to call you without getting them getting a ‘user busy’ notification.

You must access your device’s control panel to disable DND on your iPhone. For iPhone 8 and older versions. Swipe up from the bottom of your screen, while for iPhone X and newer versions, swipe down from the top of your screen.

Once the control panel opens, tap on the crescent moon or the focus stack and select disable.


“User Busy” does not indicate that someone blocked you; it simply means that the person you’re trying to call is temporarily unavailable.

Several reasons could lead to a caller receiving the “User Busy” message on their phone, the most popular being the other person is currently on a call them has Do Not Disturb turned on.

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