Why Is My iPhone Black And White? Here’s The Real Fix!

If your iPhone has suddenly turned black and white, you’ve come to the right place. Fortunately, the fix is simple and it won’t cost you a dime. In this article, we’ll discuss the reason why your iPhone is black and white and I’ll show you how to fix your black and white iPhone for good.

The solution I describe in this article will work equally well for iPhones, iPads, and iPods, because it’s software, not the physical hardware, that has turned your display black and white. If your iPad is black and white, this article will help you too.

Why Is My iPhone Black And White?

Your iPhone has changed to black and white because “Grayscale”, an Accessibility setting that was introduced in iOS 8, has accidentally been turned on. Grayscale mode makes it easier for people with color-blindness and difficulty seeing to use the iPhone.

It’s an lifesaver if you have difficulty seeing colors. If you don’t, having a black and white iPhone can be frustrating, especially if you don’t know how to turn it off.

How Do I Change My iPhone From Black And White To Color?

To change your iPhone back to color, go to Settings -> Accessibility -> Display & Text Size and turn off the switch next to Color Filters. Your iPhone will instantly change from black and white to full color. Problem solved — probably.

turn off grayscale color filter

A Second Place To Look

After I wrote this article, I received a number of emails from people whose iPhones were still black and white, even after they turned off the Grayscale setting. Special thanks goes to Anita, a commenter who let me know about a second setting that can turn iPhones black and white.

If your iPhone is still black and white, go to Settings -> Accessibility -> Zoom -> Zoom Filter and tap None. To learn more about how Zoom works on your iPhone, check out my article about how to fix iPhones that get stuck zoomed in.

turn off zoom grayscale filter

Another Setting To Watch Out For

Before you declare the problem solved for good, it’s important for me to point out one more setting that may be causing Grayscale to turn on and off without your knowledge. Head back to Settings -> Accessibility, scroll all the way to the bottom, and tap Accessibility Shortcut.

Accessibility Shortcut is a handy feature that makes it easy to turn Accessibility features on or off by triple-clicking the Home button (iPhone 8 and older) or the side button (iPhone X and newer). If any of the features you see listed have checkmarks to the right, it means that you can enable that feature by triple-clicking the Home button or side button.

iPhones running an older version of iOS will have a Grayscale option listed here. If Grayscale is checked, tap the checkmark to turn off that Accessibility shortcut. That way, you can’t accidentally turn Grayscale on or off as you go throughout your day.

Grayscale Accessibility Shortcut

Wrapping It Up

In this article, we discussed the reasons why your iPhone changed to black and white and how to restore your iPhone to full color. I’d love to hear your experiences in the comments section below. If you have other questions about your iPhone, iPad, Mac, PC, or other technology, the Payette Forward Community is a great place to get help.

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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Maureen
9 months ago

Thank you so much , fixed instantly ???

Thursday morning
9 months ago

Thank you and very appreciate that you wrote this article

sandra
10 months ago

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! Your last tip helped(a second place to look)

Alice Schielke
10 months ago

Tried all of these … the screen’s still a black background with white type.

Alice Schielke
10 months ago

Tried all of these … no luck!

bruce
10 months ago

It worked
Thanks!!!

Kim Black
10 months ago

Thank you sooo much! It helped my iPhone 8 change from grayscale back to color mode that I accidentally without knowing had turned on
2020

Kim
10 months ago

Thank you sooo much! It helped my iPhone 8 change from grayscale back to color mode that I accidentally without knowing had turned on
2020

K.B.
10 months ago

Thank you sooo much!!! I have an iPhone 8 and accidentally/without knowing had changed they display settings to grayscale! Your article helped me fix it! Thank you thank you!
Nov. 2020
-KB

Bonnie G
10 months ago

Great! Going to zoom area worked.

Steve Spiers
11 months ago

hi i have an iPhone 7plus. After upgrading to iOS 14.2 ver 3 beta my screen turned black and white. I tried the grey scale option but no difference so tried accessibility zoom zoom none, but this didn’t work either. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Sharon
11 months ago

Fixed!! Many thanks 🙂

kevin
11 months ago

terrific

Isabelle Ficek
11 months ago

?please help!!!!!!!!!!

Linny D.
11 months ago

Thank you sooo much!! Anita’s tip did the trick!!

Monty
1 year ago

Brill thank you v much. Second tip was the one.

Stacey Guerrero
1 year ago

I did not work help my phone turn back to Color

Kristen Aldrich
10 months ago

DID NOT help mine either , still stuck in Grayscale . Ive tried EVERYTHING,]]. Did you ever find out the problem

Jenifer
1 year ago

Thank you so much. The second Way was the one I needed. Thank you so much.

C & T
1 year ago

Thank You so much, David!!! Zoom worked the charm….Very nice of you to help the less-technological amongst us 🙂

Verona Newsom
1 year ago

Thank you so much, I now have color.

Dave
1 year ago

Thank you , the ZOOM tip was the answer !

Lesley
1 year ago

Fantastic easy to follow instructions that work. It’s plus 30 degrees today and hubby came home with an “iPhone problem” which usually means a few hours of stress? not so with your guidance it’s all sorted. Do you post any iPad fixes. He’s having probs with that too. Thanks again brilliant ????

Liam Shotwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Lesley

We have a few iPad articles. You can learn how to put an iPad in DFU mode, and learn about some settings that we recommend you turn off immediately on your iPad. Thank you for reading!

ShannieB
1 year ago

Thank you SO MUCH! I thought my phone was broken because I couldn’t change it from black and white to color. I never would have checked in zoom filter.

Kailey
1 year ago

Thanks dude this helped me out fr

Lynette Harrison
1 year ago

My iPhone 8 plus is still locked in black and white after trying all of the tricks. What else could I try? Thank you.

Mary Alexander
1 year ago

Yes!! I have an iPhone 6se and it doesn’t have the gray scale slide option. Your advice #2 for going into zoom and click—none worked!!! The color came back instantly. But for good measures in that same zoom area I unchecked Gray Scale! Thank you ?

SHARAD BHATT
1 year ago

Thank you so much your FIRST trick its awesome its working just like miracle.

Charliene Massa
1 year ago

Thank you so much. Easy to follow, even for me.
appreciate the help ?

Liam Shotwell
1 year ago

Glad we were able to lend you a hand! ?

Will
1 year ago

THANK YOU SO MUCH

Heather
1 year ago

Thank you! The second trick worked!

Maira
1 year ago

I dont have accessibility in settings

Liam Shotwell
1 year ago
Reply to  Maira

On iOS 13 and up, Accessibility is located on the main settings screen. If you have an iOS version of 12 and under, it should be located under General.

Tim
1 year ago

Awesome. Thanks for posting this.

Linwood P.
1 year ago

Here is the fix. Plaster over the internet. How to change your iPhone X back to color if somehow it accidentally got turned to black and white. Simply click three times quickly on the right side button located on the side upper
right. Same button that turns it off. Click it rapidly 3 times. Bingo.

starr
1 year ago

thats amazing

Dorothy Pilkins
1 year ago

Second step worked thanks bunches

Dmirty
1 year ago

Thank you very much for your advice, the second tip fixed the situation when I was already hopeless

Jennifer
1 year ago

Thank you!!!!!! The zoom feature was on and causing this! Somehow it happened. Happy to have color back!! Thank you!!!

Terry Jones
1 year ago

Well, NONE of your solutions have helped me solve my compounding problem. Last night, somehow, my screen went from colour to black & white, the font magnified to an unusable degree, and I couldn’t even access the Settings. I managed, this morning to reduce the font size somewhat, but the screen jumps all over the place and I’ve lost access to Settings again.

Admin
David Lynch
1 year ago
Reply to  Terry Jones

Did you try putting your iPhone in DFU mode? Sounds like there might be a deeper software problem.

Debra
1 year ago
Reply to  Terry Jones

Tap the screen with three fingers to get it out of zoom. That happened to me.

Patricia
1 year ago

Thank you so much for these tips. The second one worked for me. This was the 3rd page I came to for help and finally found it.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Thank you, the second fix worked for me. really appreciate it

Anonymous
2 years ago

Thanks it helped a lot!!

Anonymous
2 years ago

Thank you! It was great to have the additional instructions as I have an old iPhone

Anonymous
2 years ago

Tried all that still black and white

Anonymous
2 years ago

None of these tips worked Im still in black-and-white I have an iPhone 7 please help

Anonymous
2 years ago

Thank you! It was definitely the zoom filter. All fixed now.

Anonymous
2 years ago

Fantastic
Thank you .

Anonymous
2 years ago

I have done everything to get my screen back to color. I cant do business or read anything because my color is gone. I need help big time…Thanks

Anonymous
2 years ago

Thank youuuu… The second fix too care of the problem…

Anonymous
2 years ago

Thanks also, mine was the seconfd fix too. Third was ok

Anonymous
2 years ago

Thanks for helping