Several iPhone users have experienced problems wherein their phones will display an error claiming repair is needed on the device, disallowing use.
Apple Discussions poster Xraycovert writes:
"Abruptly, my new iPhone began, and continues to flash, a REPAIR NEEDED message on the screen. I can only access an SOS."
While for the most part this error does indicate a problem with the phone will need to be fixed, in some instances this error message is being shown erroneously. There are several things users can do to try to fix the problem before contacting Apple support or taking the phone in for servicing. If these fixes do not work, users can contact Apple at 1-800-MY-APPLE or go to a local Apple store.
Reset the phone Press the Sleep/Wake button for several seconds until the red slider appears, and then slide it to turn the phone off. Then press the Sleep/Wake button again to restart the phone. The Apple logo will appear when the phone starts up.
Charge the phone This may be due to the batteries not being charged enough, and it is recommended to turn the phone completely off and plug it in to charge it for at least 30 minutes. Then try starting the phone up again by pressing the Sleep/Wake button.
Restore iPhone software This procedure will erase the iPhone contents, so be sure everything is backed up before proceeding (even though there is an option to do this before the restore begins). To restore the iPhone software, first connect the iPhone to your computer and then in iTunes select the device and select the "Summary" tab. Then click the "Restore" option and in the dialogue box choose "Back Up" to ensure the data is safe. Then click "Restore" in the next window and the phone should automatically reset. Finally, when the phone is working again, it will require activation where the phone's data and settings can optionally be applied from the backup made before the restore.