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During the course of a typical day, we literally make millions of calls for a variety of reasons. Despite the advent of texting and Apps like WhatsApp, many of us still prefer the simplicity of a phone call to convey our intended message. Calling each other may appear archaic in some ways, but we doubt it will ever become extinct.

One unintended consequence of attempting to call one another is that we occasionally hear a variety of pre-recorded messages. Among these is “the number you dialed is not a working number,” which is one of the most common.

The Number You Dialed is Not a Working Number - What Does it Mean?
The Number You Dialed is Not a Working Number – What Does it Mean?

However, when we try to dial a number that we know is in service, we may receive this recorded message. So, if we know it’s real and we just dialed it, why are we getting this message? To be honest, these things do happen, and they can be quite perplexing when they do.

For that reason, we’ve put together this handy guide to help you understand what’s going on. So, if you’ve found yourself in this situation, you’ve come to the right place for solutions!

WHAT CAUSES “THE NUMBER YOU HAVE DIALED IS NOT WORKING?”

  • What causes the call intercept message “the number you have dialed is not in service” to play when attempting to make a phone call? When you receive the “the number you have dialed is not in service” intercept message, one of the many possible causes is that the number you are attempting to call has been disconnected from the network provider or that it is incorrect, such as you missing one or more numbers or switching the digits for themselves.
  • Even if you did not dial the number incorrectly, there is a chance that the system did, resulting in this intercept message playing. This happens when you try to call numbers with an area code at certain times of the day, especially when the phone lines are under a lot of strain. Even calling multiple times at the same time may result in this call intercept message, but we recommend that users give it some time and try redialing the number, as long as you’re certain you have the correct number.
  • Still, when it comes to calling the wrong number, we should point out that, while you may receive the correct number and, in some cases, the phone lines are operational, the recipient may have given you the incorrect number. So, if it’s a love interest or a business deal that doesn’t want you to contact them, receiving this call intercept message after some time means you may have been given the wrong number.
  • We’ve received call intercept messages when attempting to call a newly issued number that hasn’t yet been added to the routing tables. The main reason for this is called number portability, which basically means that a given number no longer belongs to the carrier and has not been added to another carrier. It could go on for a while, but generally, waiting a few minutes to a few hours for a call back should clear this up.
  • There are also times when you dial a number that was left on your Caller ID by someone you don’t know. If this is the case, you should assume that the phone number has been spoofed. When you call the number, it will return the call intercept message “the number you have dialed is not in service” because it is a fake number. You’d also like to know that certain businesses and hospitals make it impossible for you to call them back, so you should look into this before jumping to conclusions.
  • However, in the vast majority of cases, receiving the “the number you have dialed is not in service” call intercept message, regardless of the circumstances – whether the phone number was misdialed, the customer has not renewed their phone bills, the telecom company has disconnected their phone number from service, or the recipient lost their phone – is an indication that the customer is not technically permanently out of service, or that the issue would not make you perplexed.
The Number You Dialed is Not a Working Number
The Number You Dialed is Not a Working Number

WHY AM I GETTING “THE NUMBER YOU DIALEDiS NOT A WORKING NUMBER” MESSAGE?

Simply put, the “The Number You Dialed Is Not a Working Number” message is intended to inform you that the number you dialed is not in use by anyone. Because it is effectively an unused and free number, it cannot be connected to.

With potentially billions of numbers in use, it’s always quite amazing when we manage to call one that isn’t. But what if we had saved that number in our phone? In this case, the most likely scenario is that the person who was previously using that number has stopped using it.

If this is the case, they will have had to go to great lengths to discontinue the number so that it could be given to someone else. So, let’s assume that this isn’t the case in the majority of cases.

Something else must be at work. Below is a list of every other scenario we could think of that could explain the situation you’ve found yourself in.

1. An Incorrect Area Code

There will be a prefix with every number that represents an area code, a country code, or both. Furthermore, if you are using a landline, there may be a city code that you must remember.

Naturally, if the person you’re calling lives in the same area as you, you won’t need to bother with an area code, so this won’t explain why you’re having trouble connecting. Aside from that, it’s always a good idea to double-check that you have the correct area code for the person you’re trying to reach.

Fortunately, these kinds of things can now be verified with a quick Google search, so you should be able to confirm or reject this suggestion in a matter of seconds. If an incorrect area code was not to blame, proceed to the next step.

Alternative Video: Fix The Number You Dialed Is Not A Working Number

The Number You Dialed Is Not A Working Number

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2. Make sure there is no Typo in the Number

Again, this may appear to be too simple for you to have missed, but there is always the possibility of a slip of the finger as you typed the number in. As I type this, the occasional typo will undoubtedly occur. It is a natural side effect regardless of how frequently you use your devices.

A digit may be missing somewhere in the number, or a 2 may be used instead of a 5. If this is the case, you will either dial the wrong person or, in your case, no one at all. So, before moving on to the next suggestion, do a quick double-check to ensure that you have the correct number.

3. You may have Dialed a Discontinued Number

The list of possible causes for the “The number you dialed is not a working number” recorded messages has been significantly reduced at this point. Really, if you’ve called this number before and are confident that you’ve dialed the correct one, there’s only one option left.

Unfortunately, you may have to consider that the user of that number has discontinued the number and stopped using it entirely at this point. This rarely occurs because it can take quite a bit of effort to discontinue a number, especially in a short period of time.

When this happens, the only thing to do is call around and ask mutual contacts what happened. If you have been attempting to connect with a business, these customers are more likely to discontinue and change numbers.

Again, the quickest way to get back in touch is to Google the company and see if they have changed their phone number. Most of the time, they will have posted any changes to the phone number in a prominent location on the website. After all, failing to do so would be a bad business decision.

What Does 'The Number You Dialed Is Not A Working Number' Mean?
What Does ‘The Number You Dialed Is Not A Working Number’ Mean?

Frequently Asked Questions

What does it mean when the number you dialed is not a working number?

When you receive the “the number you have dialed is not in service” intercept message, one of the many possible causes is that the number you are attempting to call has been disconnected from the network provider or that it is incorrect, such as you missing one or more numbers or switching the digits for themselves.

What does a non-working phone number imply?

“What does it mean when you call back a number from which you missed a call and get the message, “You have reached a non-working number?” ” It was most likely a spammer who purposefully used a non-working phone number” (or exist).

What does it mean when you call someone and it says the number you have dialed?

It indicates that the number you dialed has been changed, disconnected, or is temporarily out of service.

How can you tell if someone has blocked you on iOS?

Before you suspect you’ve been blocked, look beneath the last text you sent. If the previous iMessage said “Delivered” in the message bubble but the most recent one didn’t, it could mean you’ve been blocked. If you see an iMessage Not Delivered error instead, that could be another sign.

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