We still don’t know the real reason for blocking FaceTime in the Middle East but we do know that FaceTime works in Tunisia. Vodafone Qatar announced that they will reactivate it and Government policies in Qatar prevented initial FaceTime availability. Vodafone Egypt confirmed that saying that Egypt’s NTRA decided to block FaceTime. So no conspiracy theories there.
For the time being there is a hack to enable FaceTime on iPhone 4 (and iPod touch 4G) running iOS 4.1 and sold from these carriers:
- Saudi Arabia’s Mobily and the following model numbers MC605AE MC603AE
- UAE’s Du and Etisalat and the following model numbers MC605AE MC603AE
- Vodafone Qatar and the following model numbers MC605AE MC603AE
- Egypt’s Vodafone and Mobinil and the following model numbers MC605AB MC603AB
And this fix should work with other carriers that are having problems activating FaceTime on iPhone 4 for one reason or another.
This solution is presented by iPhoneislam and is called FaceTime Hacktivator. It relies on Jailbreak so we have to remind you that any iOS update will cancel jailbreak and FaceTime. We take no responsibility for jailbreaking your iPhone.
Here are the steps for installing FaceTime Hackticator quoted as I already have FaceTime and do not need to Jailbreak my iPhone 4.
- Open Cydia
- Click (Manage) then (Sources)
- Top right click (Edit) then (ADD) on the left
- Enter the source: http://apps.iphoneislam.com
- Click (Add Source)
- Click (Done)
- Find iPhoneIslam and click it
- Find FaceTime Hacktivator and click it
- Top left click (Install) then click (Confirm)
- Click (Reboot)
- Go to iPhone Settings > Phone > FaceTime. Turn it On and make sure your number is entered in a full international format (+966…)
- Wait 1 to 10 minutes and FaceTime should be activated. If it took more than 15 minutes try resetting network settings.
Please share your results in the comments.
Of course this is a temporary solution that could be disabled later on so carriers need to fix this issue from the start. So far only Vodafone Qatar appeared to be doing something regarding the issue.
Thanks for the heads up @houssini @paracha3 @shady_jd15.
Arabic version of this post on SaudiMac Arabic Edition.
Remember to visit We Want Apple Saudi Arabia petition and spread the word.