How do I turn on the ringer on my iPhone???

We’ve got an iPhone, and somehow we’ve turned off the ringer. If we get an incoming call, it vibrates, but I can’t find a way to turn on the ringer again. I’ve gone to the “settings” section and the volume for the ringer is set way up, it’s not on airplane mode, it’s not set for “silent.” What am I missing?

There is a switch on the left side of the top of the phone, you should see a tiny orange dot where it is switched to silent. Flip the switch, which makes the little orange dot go away, and you will see a bell on the sreen light up. Now your ringer is on again. If you flip it back and forth, the bell will alternate - with and without a line drawn through it.

Don’t feel bad. I did the same thing to mine and it took me 2 days to figure out where the little switch was.

It took me longer than that, but it was worth it! I love my switch!

Huh. Steve Jobs chose a hardware solution rather than a software solution. That seems rather … primitive.

At any rate, thanks everyone. The iPhone is now ringing! (Barking, actually, since Mrs Piper liked that option.)

I have my share of gripes about the iPhone, but that’s one of things I love.

How neat. Has that switch always been there, or is it new to the iPhone 4?

Does it abide by the phone lock or can you accidentally trigger it in your pocket?

I have the switch on my 3g iphone so its been that long at least, problem with it is that its fragile and tends to break off, like mine did.


The switch was on my 3gs as well. It works whether the phone is locked or not; I suppose it can be accidentally triggered in a pocket, but it takes a solid push to click it back and forth.

The switch is nice; I hated having to navigate menus on my old Windows Mobile device to turn the ringer on and off. With this, I can just reach into my pocket to switch it on or off or check to make sure the ringer is off in the dark; if it vibrates when you switch it, then the ringer is off.

I agree, I love it. With my blackberry it took a little navigation and was a bother changing it every time I got into and out of work. The switch makes it very easy to swap without even needing to bring it out.

I was going to post something incredulous and lightly sarcastic, but really, I can’t point fingers. It took me months to figure out that I could access iPod controls for music playback (pause, stop, rewing/skip, advance to next song, etc.) without unlocking my phone by double-pressing on the home button. The funny thing is that every now and then I’d accidentally do it while unlocking my phone to get at the iPod controls, and be wondering “how do I do that again?!”.

Yes, I very much like the mechanical ringer-off and volume controls. Seems like SJ figured that people were wasting too much time fumbling through settings to silence their cell phones, and that once you’re in the middle of a call you may want to adjust volume “on the fly” while still holding it to your ear. This way once you know where it is you can just feel for it and do it.

If the handset is also encased in a sleeve like mine is, that lowers the possibility that another object in your pocket may casually press on the buttons.

However the difficulty some of us had in figuring out some of these shortcuts points out to that IMO one of the preset apps should have been a standalone quick start cheatsheet. Just a diagram that shows arrows pointing to the edges of the device with a little blurb telling you what’s each thing around the bezel, that links to a pop-up saying how it works.

Another tip that may not be as obvious as Apple seems to think it would be: pressing on the lock button (on the top right) when an incoming call comes in silences that call, without affecting any subsequent calls.

The one on my 3G broke off as well. The same thing happened to a friend of mine with a 3G. Mine was stuck on vibrate which was fine with me. I never want the ringer to be on. I could get my finger nail in there and switch it if I really needed to do so.

The switch on the 4 is much better designed and probably won’t break.

Love it now but it took me a week to figure out why it wasn’t making any noise too :(.

Maybe for you, but mine (a 3G) is always going back and forth between ‘ring’ and ‘silent’ in my pocket, and I don’t ever keep anything else in that pocket. I think it’s less likely to do that if you use a case, but I don’t. I’ve tried a couple, and they all either add too much bulk for me to still like having it in my pocket, or don’t add too much bulk, but then keep falling/popping off when I took it out of my pocket.

I’m surprised so many people didn’t find that switch right away…I mean, there’s a switch there! Why wouldn’t you flick it back and forth and see what it does? But I’m a very ‘gadget-savvy’ person and also very curious, so the first thing I do when I get a new phone/MP3 player/whatever is push every button and hit every switch to see what it does, but I guess not everyone else does that?

Oh, and something I was just reminded of because it happened just now. That switch is only for phone calls, emails, and texts. The alarm function, if you use it, will still play. Which I think it pretty good, because then you can easily set your phone to not wake up up in the middle of the night from a phone call or text, but still have an alarm to wake you up in the morning. But it is a surprise when you know your phone is in silent mode but you hear it go off…a few seconds of “hey, it’s broken-oh, no, right.”

It’s been there since the first gen iPhone. It is completely independent of whether the phone is locked or not.

I for one, saw the switch right when I got my first iPhone.

um the problem was that for a week I was trying to push it like a button until a friend showed me that it was a toggle switch.

Actually, it makes perfect sense. Imagine if you needed to change a software setting to quiet the phone. You’d have to unlock the screen, maneuver to the correct menu choice, then change the option. Imagine doing this when you go to a restaurant or movie.

A hardware switch allows you to quickly silence the phone without barely taking the iPhone out of your pocket.

I never noticed that little switch until now. Thanks, folks!

Well, now that I think of it, I did notice it, but I was never sure what it did, so I ignored it.