Trouble shooting

Known issues

Updated November 29th, 2022

Calls to mobiles and landlines

  • Due to recent changes by the Chinese telecom regulator, outgoing calls to Chinese mobile and landline numbers cannot be connected reliably at this time. We are working with our local partners to address this issue.
  • Local regulations in some countries prohibit connecting calls that originate outside the country but display a local caller ID. We have noticed this for Japan, UAE, Israel, Turkey, Singapore, France and Germany.
  • Calls to short numbers may not work since our local partners do not support calls to these numbers.


  • Swedish phone numbers from one of our old providers are not available for free with paid plans.
  • While making a payment with Google Pay, for some card issuers payments may only work if you first save the card on your Google Pay account and then make a payment at Sonetel. We are working with our payment provider to ensure this is resolved as soon as possible.
  • While saving your credit card with Sonetel, your bank may require you to complete 3D-Secure authentication the first time. If this step is not completed, the payment may be declined and the card will not be saved.
    In case you face issues with 3D secure payments, please contact your bank.
  • If you activate the Premium plan after purchasing a phone number, then the free Premium benefits with the number are activated after the number’s next renewal date.
  • On our web portal when looking at the detailed monthly statement (under Billing > Account Statements) the destination phone numbers sometimes have extra characters “=22” or “=2B” added to them. This happens when the calls are forwarded to your mobile number.
  • On our old customer portal, details of calls & other service charges are not available for monthly account statements that are older than 3 months. In case you wish to get details of statements older than 3 months, please contact support.
  • When you make a payment using PayPal, we add your PayPal account as a payment method in Sonetel. In certain regions, PayPal may have special requirements and limitations due to local regulations, which may restrict using PayPal balance to make the payment or require additional steps to enable this. These are imposed by PayPal and not by Sonetel. You may please contact PayPal to get more information about these.

Voice apps

  • If your Sonetel phone number is set to connect incoming calls to a welcome menu and then forward them to a mobile number then in cases where you do not answer the call on your mobile and the call ends up at your Sonetel voicemail box there may be problems with the voicemail recording emailed to you.

Caller ID

  • Due to local regulations, from 1st December 2022 international calls made to German phone numbers that show a German caller ID may fail to connect or connect with an anonymous caller ID.
  • From 1st March 2019, it will no longer be possible to show Sonetel numbers purchased from some countries before 18-December-2018 as the caller ID in outgoing calls. This change is due to restrictions imposed by the service provider from whom we purchased phone numbers prior to 18-December-2018.We have been in talks with them to allow us to continue showing numbers purchased from them as caller ID in outgoing calls, but they have refused to allow this unless the outgoing calls are connected using their service. We already use multiple carriers to handle our outgoing calls. Using this provider for outgoing calls would not only require significant development effort but would also prevent us from offering lower call rates using the other partners. If you would like to show your Sonetel number as caller ID after 1-March, please contact us and we can offer you a replacement number from our new carrier. All phone numbers from our new carrier can be displayed as caller ID. Due to this restriction, from 1st March when you place a Callback call our system will always call your mobile number from +12028698283.
  • When forwarding incoming calls to a mobile or landline number, if the caller’s phone number is displayed as anonymous then the forwarded call may not be connected by our local partners.
  • Local regulations in some countries prohibit the display of caller ID for calls that originate outside the country but display a local number as the CLI.

Call Recording

  • Recorded calls may include the ringing or early media played by local carriers before the call is answered. Additionally, if a call is not answered then it’s recording is unavailable even if the early media or ringing was recorded.
  • Call recordings are sometimes not displayed when signed in to your account. This usually happens when you have a large number of call recordings and you make a payment after your prepaid account balance has turned negative. The engineering team is working on resolving this.
  • On rare occasions, when you place outbound calls or forwarding incoming calls to your mobile number and you have Call recording enabled, there may be no audio in the calls. A temporary workaround is to disable the Call recordings.

Payment issues

  • When making a payment using PayPal, some customers may be asked to link a credit or debit card to their PayPal accounts. This requirement comes from PayPal and Sonetel has no control over it.
    Please contact us and we can offer you alternate methods of payment.
  • Due to a known issue with PayPal, payments may sometimes fail with this error message
    “We are not able to process your payment using your PayPal account at this time. Please return to the merchant’s website and try using a different payment method (if available).”

This issue has been reported by many other users here. In case you face this issue, please raise this with PayPal and try a different payment method.

Mobile apps

  • While changing your avatar on our new Android app, if you choose to open your phone’s camera app to take a new photo – and your phone is low on memory – then the phone can sometimes close the Sonetel app in the background to ensure the camera app has enough memory to run properly. After you take a picture and return to the Sonetel app, the app will start afresh and your avatar would have remained unchanged.
  • It may not be possible to use our apps (both iOS and Android) if your phone number is linked to an eSim.

Call transfer

Multiple attended transfers with the same call, when PSTN is involved may fail in few cases.

  • Any inbound/outbound call to a user1, that does an attended transfer to user2. User2 does an attended transfer of the same call to another PSTN number.
  • Any inbound/outbound call to a user1, that does attended transfer to user2. User2 does blind transfer of the same call to another PSTN number.

The following and all other cases work fine.

  • Any inbound/outbound call to user1 that does blind transfer to user2. User2 does attended transfer of the same call to another PSTN number.
  • Inbound/outbound call to user1 who does an attended transfer to another PSTN number.

PSTN is the old telephone network. Attended transfer is a call transfer where you speak to the person you want to transfer a call to before you finalize the transfer. Blind transfer is when you transfer a call without first talking to the recipient.


  • We cannot guarantee that verification codes from 3rd party services will reach you. If it doesn’t there is unfortunately no way for us to solve it.
  • Delay in manual activation of new accounts. If you are unable to complete sign-up and contact us to manually activate your account – there will be a temporary delay. This is due to an issue with one of the backend systems used to manually activate new accounts. Internal ticket ID SCS-2438.
  • The prices displayed on our website are applicable for new phone numbers purchased after 18th December 2018. Phone numbers purchased from our old carrier (prior to 18th December 2018) are charged differently – please contact us for more information.
  • Secondary email addresses added from our old customer portal are not visible on our new apps.
  • Calls to Sonetel phone numbers from Skype have in some cases been reported to fail. Please note that Skype is not a reliable calling network as it is a supplemental VoIP access tool by Microsoft and not intended as a replacement for PSTN networks.
  • Calls to toll-free numbers from other service providers in the Netherlands may not work reliably. This is because most telephone companies restrict incoming calls from international networks.
  • Our service may not work in some countries like UAE or Oman since most internet service providers block VoIP traffic.
  • If your account gets blocked due to an empty prepaid account or due to our automated functions detecting anything that appears as misuse in your account, any voicemail, fax and SMS received while the account is blocked will be lost.