Why does an iPhone get stuck on verifying update and how to fix it

If an iPhone get stuck on verifying update, it could be due to server congestion. It is not new to everyone that when Apple releases a new update, a lot of its users are waiting for that to become available on their devices and download the update. This could cause Apple’s server to overload.

All you wanted is to update your iPhone software to the latest iOS version available but things turned out bad as your device stops working and get stuck on verifying update. Problems like this usually occur when the system crashes. System crash often leads to your device being stuck on something they do or any screen they’re in. When this happens, your device will stop responding or becomes frozen. To get it back to its normal working state, it has to be rebooted. 

But since the screen is not responding to touch input commands, performing alternative reboot method is necessary. Tackled in this post is a relevant issue on the iPhone that gets stuck on verifying update. Read on to learn why this happens and what to do to get your iPhone back up and working properly again.

Before anything else, if you are looking for a solution to a different problem, then drop in on our iPhone Help Guides page for we have already solved some of the most common problems with this device. Try to find issues that are similar with yours and feel free to use our workarounds and solutions. 

Troubleshooting an Apple iPhone that’s stuck on verifying update 

Before troubleshooting, check and ensure that your iPhone has sufficient memory storage space to allocate the update file. If the internal memory is running low, there will be no more space to save the update. As a result, the update process won’t finish and your iPhone will likely gets stuck. In this case, freeing up some space by deleting unnecessary contents including unused apps will solve the problem. To check your iPhone storage status, go to Settings-> General-> iPhone Storage then check on the available memory. If the free storage is less than 1 GB, you need to delete unused apps and files.

If your iPhone has ample of storage space, then you can rule out other factors including Internet problems, restrictions and invalid settings that might have caused conflicts to your phone’s update system. Just refer to these subsequent solutions.

First solution: Force restart your ios if you are stuck on verifying updates

The first factors to rule out are minor firmware errors that caused random symptoms. And the easiest way to rectify these errors is through system reboot. But since the device is stuck or unresponsive, performing the standard reboot may not be possible. As an alternative solution, force restart your iPhone with any of these subsequent methods. 

If you’re using an iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or newer variant, follow these steps to force restart:

  1. Press and release the Volume Up button.
  2. Then press and release the Volume Down button.
  3. Finally, press and hold the Side button and then release it when the Apple logo appears.

On early iPhone like the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, a forced restart is done this way:

  • Press and hold the Volume Down button and the Power (Sleep/Wake) button simultaneously and then release both buttons with the Apple logo appears.

If you’re using an earlier version of iPhone like the iPhone 6s, 6s Plus, 6, SE and 5s, a forced restart is done this way:

  • Press and hold both the Power (Sleep/Wake) button and the Home button for a few seconds and then release both buttons when the Apple logo is displayed on the screen.

Allow your device to boot up successfully and then reconnect to the Internet. 

If your iPhone is able to boot up after a forced restart, try to turn off restrictions on your iPhone to make sure that this isn’t barring your device from downloading the update file. To turn off restrictions on your iPhone, simply follow these steps:

  1. Tap Settings from the Home screen.
  2. Select General.
  3. Tap Content & Privacy Restrictions.
  4. Then select the option to Disable Restrictions.
  5. Enter your restrictions pass code again when asked to disable restrictions.

To rule out invalid settings or erratic customization that might have caused conflicts to your iPhone’s update system, resetting all settings can help. This reset will erase all your recent customizations and then restores the original values and options. It does not affect any saved information the internal storage so there’s no need to back up files from your device. If you wish to proceed, then here’s how to reset all settings on your iPhone:

  1. Then from the Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Scroll down to and tap on Reset.
  4. Choose the option to Reset all settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode when asked to continue.
  6. Confirm that you want to reset all settings on your iPhone.

Your phone will restart with the reset is finished. By then you can start re-enabling WiFi and other features that you want to use on your phone again. Try to see if your iPhone is still stuck on verifying update and if so, then move on to the next solution. 

ALSO READ: How to fix your iPhone XS that cannot connect to WiFi

Second solution: Delete the update file if you are stuck on verifying update

One of the possible reasons as to why your iPhone is stuck on verifying update is that a fragment of the update file that’s been downloaded on your device has been corrupted. If this happens, the entire update file could not be downloaded completely. Eventually, your iPhone gets stuck on verify update. To solve the problem, you need to delete the corrupted portion of the update file from your iPhone. Here’s how to access and delete this file:

  1. From your Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Tap iPhone Storage. A list of apps and files will then show up.
  4. Select Software Update file from the list
  5. Tap the option to Delete Update. The update file will then be removed.
  6. Go back to Settings after deleting the update file completely.
  7. Select General.
  8. Tap Software Update.
  9. Retry downloading and installing the update.

If your iPhone gets stuck on verifying update again, proceed to the next method to rule out other factors.

Third solution: Refresh your Internet connection if your iPhone stuck on verifying update 

One of the common issues why your iPhone may not be able to download or install update wirelessly is due to Internet connectivity issues. Your device will need to communicate with the update server to process your update request. But without a stable Internet connection, it wouldn’t be able to establish connection to the update server, thus updating errors transpire. To fix random Internet issues like this, refresh the Internet connection is recommended.

There are different ways to refresh Internet connection on your iPhone. You can start from the main source of the Internet which is the wireless router/modem. When the modem/wireless router encounters firmware crashes, network-related issues are triggered. The problems would range from slow browsing to intermittent connection or WiFi drops. To rule this out, power cycle the wireless router/modem with these steps:

  1. Press the power switch to turn your modem/wireless router off.
  2. While the equipment is turned off, unplug its AC adapter from the power source.
  3. After 30 seconds to 1 minute, plug it back in then turn the modem/router on again.
  4. Wait for the network signal to become stable again.

Then reconnect your iPhone to your WiFi network to go back online and retry updating.

Another way to refresh your iPhone’s Internet connection is through the WiFi toggle. Switching the WiFi button off and on can also help eliminate minor WiFi symptoms that could have hindered your iPhone from updating wirelessly. 

  • To get this done, go to Settings-> WiFi menu then toggle the switch to turn WiFi off and on.

Performing the old Airplane Mode trick is also another option to consider if none of the prior procedures is able to fix the problem. Toggling the Airplane Mode switch on and off for a few moments can help clears out random errors inflicting adverse symptoms to the phone’s wireless functions.

  • To perform this trick, go to Settings-> Airplane Mode then toggle the switch to turn Airplane mode on. Doing so disables the phone’s wireless functions. While Airplane mode is turned on, reboot/soft reset your iPhone. After the phone reboots, go back to Settings-> Airplane Mode menu. Then toggle the Airplane Mode switch to turn it OFF again.

Wireless radios and relevant features are then reactivated. Enable WiFi to reconnect to the Internet and use online services. Once your iPhone is connected, open a browser then navigate through various websites and pages. If all websites are able to load up, it means that your iPhone has Internet access. At this point, go back to Settings-> General-> Software Update menu then try to download and install the update again. If it still gets stuck on verifying update, try the next solution.

ALSO READ: How to fix iPhone XS Personal Hotspot that’s not working

Fourth solution: Update your iPhone in iTunes if your iPhone stuck on verifying updates

If wireless updating doesn’t work, then iTunes can be deemed as alternative solution. To update through iTunes, you will need to secure a computer that has the latest version of iTunes app and has a stable connection to the Internet. Then proceed to these steps whenever you’re ready:

  1. Connect your iPhone to the computer using the original USB cable/Lightning cable that came with it.
  2. When your iPhone is connected, open iTunes on the computer.
  3. Wait for your iPhone to appear in iTunes then click its icon.
  4. Navigate to the Summary section then click the option to Check for Update.
  5. When you’re ready, click the option to Download and Update your iPhone.
  6. Enter your passcode when asked to proceed.

Then follow the onscreen commands to finish updating your device. If it doesn’t push through and your iPhone is still stuck on verifying update, then move on to the next solution. 

Fifth solution: Erase your iPhone and restore its factory defaults through iTunes.

Among the last options to consider if none of the previous methods help is a full system reset. This will wipe everything from your iPhone system and then restores the factory default settings. Any associated errors including those affecting wireless services are likewise eliminated. But before you proceed, back up all your files to iCloud or iTunes so you’d still be able to recover them afterwards. Once you’re all set, follow these steps to manually erase your iPhone in iTunes and install the latest iOS version available:

  1. Launch the iTunes app on your computer. Make sure you’re using the latest version of iTunes. If not, then you should consider updating iTunes first to avoid system conflicts and errors.
  2. Connect your iPhone to the computer with the Apple-supplied USB cable or Lightning cable that came with it.
  3. Wait for your iPhone to appear in iTunes then select it.
  4. Navigate to the Summary section then click the button to Restore [device].
  5. Click Restore again to confirm that you want to restore your iPhone in iTunes. This will prompt iTunes to start erasing your iPhone and then installs the latest iOS version available.
  6. When the reset is finished, your device restarts. By then you can set it up as new.

If you opt to manually update your iPhone and then it still gets stuck on verifying update, it’s time to restore your iPhone. 

Last resort: Restore your iPhone in recovery mode.

Aside from a factory reset, you can also put your iPhone in recovery mode to erase your device and restore iOS. This process will require you to use iTunes on a computer, so you’ll have to secure the equipment beforehand. You can use either a Windows PC or Mac for as long as it runs on a compatible operating system with your iPhone. The steps to enter recovery mode vary depending on the device model. Just refer to these steps if you’re not sure how to put your iPhone in a recovery state:

To enter recovery mode on iPhone X or later, and iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, follow these steps:

  1. Press and hold the Side/Power button and either Volume buttons until the Power off slider appears.
  2. Drag the slider to power off your device.
  3. Connect your iPhone to the computer while holding the Side/Power button and then release the button when the Connect to iTunes (recovery mode) screen appears.

To enter recovery mode on iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, follow these steps:

  1. Press and hold the Side/Power button until the Power Off slider appears.
  2. Drag the slider to power off your device completely.
  3. Connect your iPhone to your computer while holding the Volume Down button and then release the button when you see the Connect to iTunes (or recovery mode) screen appears.

To enter recovery mode on iPhone 6s or earlier models, follow these steps:

  1. Press and hold the Side/Power button until the Power off slider appears.
  2. Drag the slider to power off your device.
  3. Connect your iPhone to the computer while holding the Home button and then release the button when the Connect to iTunes (or recovery mode) screen appears.

After a few more seconds, iTunes will prompt you to Restore or Update your iPhone. Select Restore to command iTunes to download the software for your device and restore iOS.

Still gets stuck on verifying update?

At this point, there’s not much can be done on your end. So your next option would be to escalate the problem to your carrier or Apple Support for further assistance. Doing so will also allow you to verify if the update server is currently available. It’s also possible that the update server is congested or experiencing downtime. If this is the case, then all have to do is to wait until the server is back up and working again. 

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