My iPhone Is Frozen! What To Do When Your iPhone Freezes.

Your iPhone is frozen and you don’t know what to do. You press the Home button, the Power button, and swipe with your finger, but nothing happens. This article isn’t just about how to unfreeze your iPhone once: It’s about how to determine what caused your iPhone to freeze in the first place and how to prevent your iPhone from becoming frozen again in the future.

As An Apple Tech, I Can Say With Assurance That Every Other Article I’ve Seen Is Wrong.

Other articles I’ve seen, including Apple’s own support article, explain a single fix for a single reason that iPhones freeze, but there are many things that can cause a frozen iPhone. Other articles don’t talk about how to fix the problem, and this is a problem that doesn’t go away by itself.

Why Is My iPhone Frozen?

Your iPhone is frozen because of a software or a hardware problem, but the most of the time, a serious software problem is what causes iPhones to freeze. However, if your iPhone is still ringing but the screen is black, you’ll find the solution in my article called My iPhone Screen Is Black! If it’s frozen, read on.

1. Unfreeze Your iPhone

Usually, you can unfreeze an iPhone by doing a hard reset, and this is as far as other articles usually go. A hard reset is a band-aid, not a solution. When an iPhone freezes because of a deeper issue like a hardware problem, a hard reset might not work at all. That being said, if we’re going to fix your frozen iPhone, a hard reset is the first thing we’ll do.

How To Do A Hard Reset On Your iPhone

Hold the Home Button (the circular button below the display) and the Sleep / Wake Button (the power button) together for at least 10 seconds. If you have an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus, you’ll need to hard reset your iPhone by pressing and holding the power button and volume down button together. You can let go of both buttons after the Apple logo appears on the screen.

You should be able to use your iPhone after it turns on, but I highly recommend you continue reading to figure out why your iPhone froze in the first place, so it doesn’t happen again. If a hard reset doesn’t work, or if your iPhone immediately freezes after it reboots, skip to step 4.

iPhones don’t usually go from perfect working order to completely frozen. If your iPhone has been slow, getting hot, or its battery has been dying very fast, my other articles can help you resolve those issues, which may in turn fix this one.

2. Back Up Your iPhone

If your iPhone rebooted in the last step, I highly recommend you take this opportunity to back up your iPhone. When an iPhone freezes, it’s not just a speed bump – it’s a major software or hardware problem. It’s always a good idea to have a backup, especially if you’re not sure whether your iPhone will freeze again in an hour or a day.

You can find more information about how to back up your iPhone on our YouTube channel, or check out my article that explains how to fix iCloud backup so you never run out of iCloud storage space again.

3. Try To Determine Which App Caused The Problem

Something has to go wrong with an app or service for your iPhone to freeze. A service is a program that runs in the background of your iPhone to keep things running smoothly. For example, CoreTime is the service that keeps track of the date and time on your iPhone. Here are some questions to help you troubleshoot:

  • Were you using an app when your iPhone froze?
  • Does your iPhone freeze every time you use that app?
  • Did you recently install a new app?
  • Did you change a setting on your iPhone?

The solution is obvious if your iPhone began to freeze after you downloaded a new app from the App Store: Delete that app.

What if your iPhone freezes whenever you open the Mail app, Safari, or another built-in app that you can’t delete?

If that’s the case, go to Settings -> That App and see if you can find any problems with the way it’s set up. For example, if Mail is causing your iPhone to freeze, make sure your usernames and passwords are entered correctly for your Mail accounts. If Safari is freezing, go to Settings -> Safari and choose Clear All History and Website Data. Solving this problem usually requires some detective work.

Check Diagnostics & Usage

A lot of the time, it’s not so obvious why your iPhone is freezing. Go to Settings -> Privacy -> Analytics -> Analytics Data and you’ll see a list of apps and services, some of which you’ll recognize, some of which you won’t.

check iphone analytics data

Just because something is listed here doesn’t necessarily mean there’s a problem with that app or service. However, if you see something listed over and over again, and especially if you see any apps listed next to LatestCrash, there may be a problem with that app or service that’s causing your iPhone to freeze.

Reset All Settings

Reset All Settings can help if you’re still not sure which app is causing your iPhone to freeze. Reset All Settings resets your iPhone settings to their factory defaults, but it doesn’t delete any data.

You’ll have to reenter your Wi-Fi password and configure the Settings app again, but Reset All Settings can fix a frozen iPhone, and it’s a lot less work than erasing and restoring your iPhone from a backup. To reset your iPhone to factory default settings, go to Settings -> General -> Reset -> Reset All Settings.

reset all settings confirmation on your iphone

4. Stronger Measures: Fix The Frozen iPhone Problem For Good

If a hard reset didn’t work, or if you’ve tried all the software fixes I describe above and your iPhone is still frozen, we need to hit the frozen iPhone problem with The Big Hammer, and that means we need to DFU restore your iPhone.

Connect your iPhone to your computer and open iTunes. If iTunes doesn’t recognize your iPhone, try doing a hard reset while your iPhone is connected to your computer. This option is a last resort, because restoring your iPhone does delete all your data from your iPhone. If you have a backup on iCloud or iTunes, you should be able to restore your data after your iPhone reboots. If you don’t, there may be nothing you can do at this point to save your data.

5. Fix The Hardware Problem

If your iPhone doesn’t show up in iTunes or the restore process continually fails, a hardware problem may be causing your iPhone to freeze. Even a small amount of liquid can wreak havoc with your iPhone’s battery, processor, and other internal components. The iPhone doesn’t necessarily turn off if that happens: Sometimes, everything just stops.

Apple’s repair services are high-quality, but they can be expensive. If you’d like to go through Apple, call ahead and make an appointment with the Genius Bar, or visit Apple’s support webpage to start a mail-in repair. A less-expensive, high-quality alternative I recommend is Puls, an on-demand repair service that comes to your home or office to fix your iPhone.

iPhone: Unfrozen

We’ve fixed the reason why your iPhone is frozen and you’ve know what to do if your iPhone ever freezes again. Hopefully, you’ve discovered which app or service was causing the problem and you’re confident it’s fixed for good. I’m interested to hear what specifically caused your iPhone to freeze and how you fixed your iPhone in the comments section below. Your experience will help others fix their iPhones too.

Thanks for reading and remember to Pay It Forward,
David P.

About Author

I'm a former Apple employee and the founder of Payette Forward, and I'm here to help you with your iPhone.

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Anonymous
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Anonymous

thank you so much that really helped

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I may feel headache bcs of this phone

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I have a 6 Plus and the screen will completely black out for a few minutes and then I’m able to hit the home button and the screen lights up don’t know what’s wrong there’s been no damage what so ever to the phone

Anonymous
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Anonymous

hhhhh the problem with us

Anthony Fang
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Anthony Fang

THANK YOU….not thxs you <------------ my bad grammer :'''''c

Anonymous
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Anonymous

There’s no category called diagnostics and usage under my privacy settings. Anywhere else this might be?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Me and my partner have been experiencing more frequent black screen/unresponsive iPhones (a 6 and a 6s) since the latest iOS update. Any others with the same issue and timing?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I have the same problem, have you solved your issue yet?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Qasim Joiya yes. Do above air plans mode directions

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I have the same problem for 2 weeks anyone with a solution good people?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

are there any one have a solution ?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I got same problem as yours. How to fix it?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I am have the same exact problem – glad its not only me – but is there a resolution

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Salah Elwerfally im having the same problem no service how did you get yours to work by now

Rita Humphrey
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Rita Humphrey

I turned mine off this weekend and missed all the group texts that came through from my family (mix of iphone and android users). My texting to my husband to his iphone still worked. Phone calls and alarms worked find with the cell data off.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I opened my messenger and then… this happened. what to do? Please help!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Same Problem plz Find A solution

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I Have Iphone 6 And I Am also Facing the Problem

Anonymous
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Anonymous

my iphone got frozen two times when i opened whtsapp…wht to do..will i lose data in whtsapp if i reinstalled..pls help

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thank you! I dropped my iPhone 4S a couple of days ago. Yesterday the screen went black and nothing worked so I thought my phone had died. I was all set to go out and buy a new phone but decided at the last minute to Google the problem, just in case. Turned out to be a quick and easy fix and has saved me hundreds of dollars on purchasing a new phone 😀

Anonymous
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Anonymous

This worked for me. I could get cell service and wifi, but no cellular data. Tried a number of things, but “restoring the network settings” took 2 minutes and solved my problem.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Matt Corey how did you do it? I mean, I did the reset network sett but nothing ever recovered.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Matt Corey worked for them the other day but had to use air plane mode this time

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thank you! worked

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Mine says “reset” not “restore” network settings. And it didn’t work I have iphone 8

Anonymous
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Anonymous

My Iphone SE Went completely black could not turn on phone. I thought the phone got fried because before it happened. I plugged the USB cord into my laptop to charge the phone. So I called Verizon they said to hold the power and the home button for 30 seconds. and BINGO It came on. However I noticed the screen was popped out of the bezel but phone still works. So I used my warranty through Verizon to pay only 99 dollars to get it replaced. Because with that screen like that I don’t want to get it wet. Otherwise… Read more »

Anonymous
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Anonymous

This was helpful and I was able to unfreeze my phone. Could not really determine cause from diagnostic but reset phone.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

You may try these methods:
Method 1: Check your coverage area.
Method 2: Try to restart your iPhone.
Method 3: Check for a Carrier Settings update.
Method 4: Simply take out the SIM card and put it back in later.
Method 6: Update your iPhone to the latest version of iOS.
Method 7: Contact your carrier.
Method 8: Try RecoveryTool Fix Recovery.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Hard reset worked!! Thank you so much. x

Anonymous
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Anonymous

That’s exactly Wots happening to my iPhone 5s. Have you solv d yours yet

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Also have a 5s, phone isnt connecting

Anonymous
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Anonymous

same as mine,

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Same is happening with me. I wasn’t expecting such issues from iPhone. It’s been more than a week I am suffering because of this crappy issue.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Graene Castillo did u done the problem i also got the problem

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Graene Castillo manage to fix it ?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

This is happening to my iPhone 6s

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thank you. Helped me get mine working again

Anonymous
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Anonymous

same problem now your phone good or same problem

Anonymous
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Anonymous

OMG it worked Thanks

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thank you ,I fixed mine.so so happy.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

My iphone 6s went from being completely fine to a black screen. Tried the hard reset and it is now working. Thank you! Your instructions are very clear.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Helpful. Just need to do a hard reset.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Frozen or super slow email on iphone 6 now working just fine after taking your advice – to clear all history and website data.
Many thanks for the advice.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I have a iphone 7 that always freezes when using apps