How to Fix it When Your iPhone is Not Connecting to Wi-Fi

Troubleshooting your iPhone's Wi-Fi connection problem

Sam Costello

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It’s super frustrating when your iPhone won’t connect to Wi-Fi (especially if you have a monthly cellular data limit instead of an unlimited data plan). Not being able to connect to Wi-Fi stops you from doing things like updating the iOS, downloading large files, and streaming music and video.

Frustrated person unable to connect their iPhone to Wi-Fi

You might not be able to connect to Wi-Fi if you’re out of range or there’s interference with the Wi-Fi signal. Make sure you’re close to the wireless router when you’re trying to solve this issue.

This article was written using iOS 12 and iOS 13, but the concepts apply to many earlier versions. On earlier versions, the exact steps described below may be slightly different.

How to Fix iPhone Wi-Fi Problems

In most cases, you can fix an iPhone that won’t connect to a Wi-Fi network after some simple troubleshooting steps. In other cases, more advanced techniques are needed. Check out the many ways you can fix an iPhone that can’t connect to Wi-Fi and get back to high-speed internet access.

Make sure Wi-Fi is on. The first rule of tech support is to confirm the thing you’re trying to fix is turned on. In this case, you may simply need to turn on Wi-Fi on your iPhone. Using Control Center to turn on Wi-Fi is easiest.

A rare issue that comes up is when the iPhone’s Wi-Fi option is grayed out. Luckily, there are several solutions you can try to fix grayed out Wi-Fi.

Check if airplane mode is on. If your iPhone is in Airplane Mode (maybe you accidentally left it that way after a recent trip), your Wi-Fi is disabled.

Check if the Wi-Fi network is password protected. You can tell which networks are password protected because they have lock icons next to them on the Wi-Fi settings screen (go to Settings > Wi-Fi). If it does, you can request a password from the network owner (easy if you’re at a coffee shop, for example) or look for an unlocked network.

You can also try disconnecting and reconnecting from the network. Scroll down to the section called How to Make the iPhone Forget Wi-Fi Networks in this article about Wi-Fi on the iPhone.

Check for iOS updates. If there is an update, install it. That may solve your problem.

Restart your iPhone. Restarting your iPhone often solves its problems. If that doesn’t work, you can force restart your iPhone as a last resort.

Reset iPhone network settings. If one of the Wi-Fi settings is corrupted, it could prevent you from connecting to Wi-Fi. Although this deletes some preferences, sometimes it’s your only option.

Turn off location services. Your iPhone does a lot of helpful things behind the scenes. One of these involves using nearby Wi-Fi networks to improve the accuracy of mapping and location services. This is a nice bonus, but it can be the cause of your iPhone not being able to connect to Wi-Fi.

Restore your iPhone to factory settings. If you’re still unable to connect to Wi-Fi, you may need to take a drastic measure: restoring your iPhone to its factory settings. This deletes everything from the iPhone and returns it to its original, out-of-the-box condition.

When the reset is complete, you’ll have a fresh iPhone. You can then either set it up as a new iPhone or restore from your backup. Restoring from backup is faster, but it could bring back the bug that prevented you from accessing Wi-Fi in the first place.

Contact Apple for tech support. If none of the above fixes work, you might have a hardware problem, which is best diagnosed and repaired by Apple or an authorized Apple service provider. Search Apple’s online support site if you still want to try to fix it yourself. Otherwise, take your iPhone to a local Apple Store; we recommend making an Apple Genius bar appointment.

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If your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch won’t connect to a Wi-Fi network

Get help connecting to Wi-Fi on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

Make sure that your router is on and you’re within range

If you’re too far from your Wi-Fi router, you can’t get a signal, so make sure that you’re within range.

Make sure that Wi-Fi is on and you can see your network

Go to Settings > Wi-Fi and make sure that Wi-Fi is on. Tap the name of your Wi-Fi network to join. A blue checkmark beside a network name means that you’re connected.

If you see Auto Join Disabled under your Wi-Fi network name, tap it turn on Auto-Join.

If asked, enter your Wi-Fi password

If asked, enter the password for your Wi-Fi network. Get help if you don’t know your password.

Even if you enter the correct password, you might see an "unable to join the network" message or an "incorrect password" message. Restart all of your devices, then try to enter your password again.

Check for issues with your Wi-Fi network

If iOS detects an issue with your Wi-Fi connection, you might see a Wi-Fi recommendation under the name of the Wi-Fi network that you’re connected to. For example, you might see the alert "No Internet Connection." To get more information, tap the Wi-Fi network.

Check your cables and connections

If you still can’t connect to your network or get online, make sure that your router is connected to the modem and turned on.

Restart

Try restarting your iOS device. Here’s how to restart your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

Then restart your router, and cable or DSL modem. To restart your router or modem, unplug it, then plug it back in.

After you restart each device, see if you fixed the issue.

Still can’t connect?

Reset your Network Settings. Tap Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. This also resets Wi-Fi networks and passwords, cellular settings, and VPN and APN settings that you’ve used before.

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8 Best iPhone WiFi Tools and Network Analyzer Apps

There are iOS dedicated apps that can Analyse WiFi networks, Scan WiFi Channels, Analyse network, etc. These iPhone WiFi Tools also function as a WiFi channel scanner giving an overview of a network in access in real-time. WiFi Network analyzer app can analyze the channel and let you select the least crowded channel to connect your device for maximum performance. For PC users, there are Windows 10 tools to Analyze Network and Android WiFi Tools listed here for Android Mobile users to test Internet Speed.

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We listed the best iPhone WiFi tools and Network Analysis apps that can check WiFi speed, analysis WiFi channel, measure WiFi Signal Strength, etc.

Wi-Fi Speed Tester Apps for iPhone

These Internet speed tester tool is coming handy when you want to run a quick test of your home WiFi Speed or Data Plan Speed without opening any browser on the phone.

Internet SpeedTest by Ookla

This internet speed testing tool is coming quick and any when you want to measure the internet speed of your WiFi connection or 3g/4g network.

This iOS tool is not just for speed test, you can perform upload speed and ping test with this iOS tool. This internet speed test tool has a nice interface, and also store the information to compare later.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: No | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: No | Network Diagnose Tools: No | WiFi Signal Strength: No | Download: iTunes

iPhone WiFi Scanner and Network Analyzer

WiFi Scanner is coming handy when you want to search for an available WiFi network in your local area. These apps can update the available WiFi and mobile network, in addition to the network quality and ping speed test. Here are a couple of WiFi Analyzer apps for your iPhone and iPad:

Network Analyzer

It is an excellent WiFi analyzer helping the person to evaluate the closed, firewalled and open ports. Network Analyzer allows you to test the WiFi signal strength and do network speed tests against diverse locations. The app will continuously update the current cell and WiFi connection.

Get a visual traceroute of the WiFi with the geolocation data of the place. Detect the problem early through the app with the native iOS user interface quickly. It works fluently with both IPv4 and IPv6. You can also scan the devices connected to your hotspot.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes| Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

IT Tools – Network Analyzer

IT Tools – Network Analyzer helps you to acknowledge all the devices using your network. You can choose the suitable interface for the app and optional sound when there are errors and the arrival of responses. All the network statistics come up in real-time and lookup international domains.

Discover the running devices with NetBIOS. The WiFi scanner tool also keeps the screen from going to sleep over long ping sessions. Use the current system DNS server or do supply your own. Send the results with the help of Mail and Messages.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes| Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

WiFi Scanner/Network Channel Scanner

When your area is crowded with plenty of networks, you can change your network channel to the least crowded channel. These iOS Network Channel Scanner help you to analyze all available WiFi router channel and check the quality before you select your open WiFi.

IP Scanner

IP Scanner is a highly fast WiFi analyzer that is giving out scan results in seconds in front of you. The results are customizable and assign your personalized names to the devices connected or discovered. The design of the app is clean and kept professionally in every way.

Import and export scan results through email or bonjour. Save as well as see all your past scans on the app. Save and import custom device list or sync them iCloud or Dropbox. There are several built-in tools that available quickly on the iPhone and iPad.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes | Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

iNet – Network Scanner

Explore your network with iNet Network Scanner and know about the involving security risks. The WiFi network analyzer scans on a low-level and shows the devices hidden. The last ten scans are automatically stored in the app, and it allows you to know to check them later on.

The app quickly outlines the computer network even to an inexperienced user. Wake remotely and set a favorites list through the app also, you can reboot the Mac device. Additional info on the connected devices lets you know details like the model, visibility of host, etc.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes | Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

iPhone Network Diagnose Tools and IP Scanner

Network Diagnose Tool is a must-have on your iPhone to check the device connected to your network, quality of the network, and also alert you when somebody joins on your home network (share WiFi network password without revealing). This iPhone Network tool can help you to avoid any intruder attack that can inform if anybody joins in your home network.

Fing is a great WiFi analyzer and WiFi channel scanner helping you to do a detailed audit of the network. As soon as you open the app, it will automatically ask you to scan the networks. Ping the device and wake it up by using Wake on LAN feature. Get immediate alerts as a new device joins the network and check the WiFi speed strength with it.

It does supports device identification by IP for networks that are bridged. Fing is a good and must-have app for network utility purposes. The completely free WiFi scanner also has a nice UI with the use of bold colors every function is identifiable clearly.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes | Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

Scany

Scany is a WiFi network analyzer available for iOS devices to acknowledge the open ports as well as vulnerabilities present. It contains a fast smart algorithm that is optimized for networks that are huge in size. Instantly lookup a LAN hostname and comes with multimode as well as multi-path hops detection.

The WiFi Analyzer comes with the support of all top-level domains and the WHOIS trace support. Scan a LAN easily with the app and look up any DNS you want. It is a reliable app quite useful for the admins and users looking to secure their local network.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes | Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

iPhone Network Diagnose Tools

For Network professionals, these are the most powerful iOS tools, that can scan network ports, traceroute, DNS lookup, etc. These iPhone apps can monitor server connected to a network, list them to refer later, etc.

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iNetTools Pro – Network Diagnose Tools

iNetToolsPro is a pro version of iNetTools. It is a suite of tools built for network diagnosing devices like iPhone and iPad. The app is universal that does support most of the iOS devices. Only buy it once and use it on all other iOS devices. The simple interface of the app makes diagnose the network problems easy on iPhone and iPad devices.

It does come with unlimited email tech support available to deal with your questions and queries all the time. Through the server list, you can quickly know and access the frequently used servers.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes | Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

Wi-Fi SweetSpots

Know the changes in your WiFi connection speed over time through Wi-Fi SweetSpots. It is an excellent WiFi analyzer app to locate the Wi-Fi spots by their speed. The spots are classified under their WiFi signal strength to know the fastest and slowest ones. The app also helps in optimizing the performance of your network.

WiFi SweetSpots also indicates the user to know the position or place where he/she can get maximum speed. Before downloading a huge file, you can know whether the network is capable of the speed and signal strength.

WiFi Speed Test: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Analyzer: Yes | WiFi Scanner / Network Channel Scanner: Yes | Network Diagnose Tools: Yes | WiFi Signal Strength: Yes | Download: iTunes

You can test the WiFi signal strength of your WiFi signal on the iPhone. The WiFi finder apps can search and find out the free WiFi available in your local area that can utilize to surf the web for free. There are several WiFi scanner apps and WiFi network analyzer helping to check the network speed and range.

Slow WiFi connection condition is like hell for many people. With these WiFi analyzer tools, you can quickly know the WiFi signal strength, channel signal strength, ping speed, and even the current WiFi speed. You can improve the connection and WiFi signal strength quickly from the WiFi network analyzer apps and WiFi channel scanner.

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My iPhone Won’t Connect To Wi-Fi. Here’s The Fix!

Your iPhone won’t connect to Wi-Fi and you don’t know why. Maybe your computer connects, maybe your friend’s iPhone connects, or maybe no devices will connect at all. Maybe your iPhone connects to every Wi-Fi network except for one, or maybe it doesn’t connect to any networks at all.

There are a lot of maybes when it comes to diagnosing and solving this problem, but I’ll help you get to the bottom of it. In this article, I’ll explain why your iPhone won’t connect to Wi-Fi and help you fix the problem, whether it’s with your iPhone or your wireless router.

Meanwhile, At The Genius Bar…

A customer comes in and says their iPhone won’t connect to Wi-Fi. The technician asks the customer to connect to Wi-Fi inside the store, and most of the time, it works. That’s the first step in diagnosing this issue, and the first question you should ask yourself:

“Will my iPhone connect to any Wi-Fi networks, or is it just one network my iPhone won’t connect to?”

If you don’t have another Wi-Fi network to use to test your iPhone, go to Starbucks, your local library, or your friend’s house and try to connect to their Wi-Fi. If your iPhone connects, it’s not a hardware problem – there’s a problem between your iPhone and your wireless router at home.

Note: If your iPhone doesn’t connect to any wireless networks, skip to the section of this article called Delete All The Wi-Fi Networks Stored On Your iPhone. If that doesn’t work, skip to to the section called Diagnosing Hardware Issues. Check out my other article if Wi-Fi is grayed out in Settings!

The Simplest Fix

If you haven’t already, try powering off your iPhone and Wi-Fi router, and turning them back on.

  1. On your iPhone, press and hold the power button until slide to power off appears. Slide across the screen with your finger and wait for your iPhone to power off. It can take 15 seconds or more for your iPhone to power off. Next, hold the power button until you see the Apple logo appears on the screen.
  2. We’ll use a very technical trick to turn your Wi-Fi router off and back on: Pull the power cord out of the wall and plug it back in.

After your router reboots, try reconnecting your iPhone to Wi-Fi. If it works, there was a problem with your wireless router’s built-in software (sometimes called firmware). Few people understand how Wi-Fi networks actually work. All Wi-Fi routers use essentially the same hardware to create wireless networks, but the software built into Wi-Fi routers varies greatly from model to model.

Delete All The Wi-Fi Networks Stored On Your iPhone

Next, try completely resetting your iPhone’s database of Wi-Fi networks. This fixes the issue a lot of the time, and all but eliminates the possibility that a software issue on your iPhone is causing the problem. Go to Settings -> General -> Reset and choose Reset Network Settings.

You’ll have to reconnect to all your Wi-Fi networks and enter their passwords again, so make sure you know the important ones before you begin. Try reconnecting to your wireless router after your iPhone reboots. If it still won’t connect, it’s time to take a look at your wireless router. I’ll show you how to fix it on the next page of this article.

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How to fix iPhone WiFi connectivity issues?

As an iPhone user, you may have come across a number of issues relating to the iPhone WiFi and the device’s connectivity to the Internet. Do you experience one or more of the iPhone WiFi connection problems listed below? If yes, make sure to review the tips offered by this troubleshooting article in order to fix the iPhone WiFi not working or not connecting to the Internet.

Common iPhone WiFi problems?

My iPhone WiFi is greyed out

iphone wifi switch dim or greyed out

This is by far the most common iPhone WiFi connectivity problem. The issue is especially widespread on iPhone 4S devices but users having the iPhone 4 and iPhone 5 have also been known to experience the issue.

The reason behind iPhone WiFi switch not working

The exact cause of iPhone WiFi switch being greyed out is not fully known but is well-documented. There are rumors that the issue is related to iOS 6 and the power-management optimizations introduced with this firmware version. iOS 6 is designed to save energy by turning off any hardware elements which are not currently being used on the iPhone. This includes the iPhone’s WiFi, Bluetooth, and baseband (EDGE, 3G) radios.

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iphone wifi switch dim and inaccessible

Due to insufficient pre-release testing of iOS 6, WiFi radio chips on iPhone 4S, iPhone 4 – and sometimes – iPhone 5 running this firmware version may overheat. As a consequence to the iOS being able to switch off hardware features on the iPhone, the WiFi chip will automatically be disabled once it overheats. Once the chip is disabled, the WiFi on your iPhone appears as greyed out.

In addition to the WiFi switch being greyed-out, you can also observe the following iPhone behavior:

wifi address on iphone not displayed

“Wi-Fi Address” field under Settings General > About is missing or displaying “N/A”

bluetooth defunc on iphone

When you try to access Bluetooth on the iPhone via Settings > Bluetooth, it is inaccessible and there is a spinning wheel instead of a switch to turn ON or OFF

How to fix a disabled iPhone WiFi switch?

There are at least two ways which have proven to fix the issue. The first method is to use the iPhone’s settings as described below:

disable airplane mode on iphone

Open the Settings app on the iPhone and ensure Airplane Mode is disabled

reset network settings on iphone

Next, navigate to General > Reset and tap “Reset Network Settings”
NOTE: resetting network settings will remove all saved WiFi passwords from the iPhone

press and hold sleep and home buttons to restart iphone

Finally, restart the iPhone. To restart the iPhone press and hold both the Sleep and Home buttons until you see the iPhone screen go black

If this doesn’t help and you still have the iPhone WiFi switch greyed out, make sure to upgrade your iOS to the latest available version. Apple also recommends to use iTunes and restore the iPhone.

NOTE: Upgrading your iOS or restoring the iPhone via iTunes. Be sure to backup your iPhone. To learn more about backing up iOS data, please refer to the following page: Backup iPhone Data.

Will placing the iPhone in a freezer fix the WiFi switch from being greyed out?

There are certain forum threads which deem an alternative solution to fix the WiFi issue.

According to at least one discussion in the Apple community forums, placing the iPhone in a zipper bag and putting it in a freezer is believed to resolve the problem, albeit temporarily.

The reason behind putting the iPhone in a zipper bag and then in your refrigerator’s freezer compartment is that the low temperature will cool down the overheated WiFi radio chip. This will in turn trigger iOS 6 to enable back the iPhone WiFi hardware. We have not tested this method and we do not recommend it. The quick temperature shift between your room and the freezer could potentially damage the iPhone.

If at this point your iPhone WiFi continues to be dim, you must contact Apple directly.

I cannot connect my iPhone to a WiFi network

If your iPhone WiFi radio is operational (e.g. not greyed out), and you cannot connect to a WiFi network, follow the below procedure:

enter password for wifi network on iphone

Ensure that you are trying to connect to the right WiFi network and that you are entering the correct password
NOTE: WiFi network passwords are case-sensitive and could contain numbers and special characters

If this does not solve the issue, reset the iPhone network settings by navigating to General > Reset > Reset Network Settings

My iPhone drops the WiFi connection

First and foremost, make sure that the desired WiFi network signal is strong enough and if not, get closer to the WiFi router and its transmission antenna. Note that the problem might come from the WiFi router or your Internet Service Provider and not from the iPhone. Therefore, be sure that the rest of the devices connected to this network do not experience the same issue.

enter wifi network options on iphone

If signal strength is not a problem and the iPhone still disconnects from the WiFi network, navigate to Settings > WiFi and tap on the arrow next to the problematic WiFi network

renew wifi network lease iphone

Tap “Renew Lease”

iphone forget this network feature

If this does not fix the issue, tap on the “Forget this Network” button instead. If you do so, you will need to reconfigure the desired WiFi network on your iPhone (e.g. enter the WiFi password again)

If you still experience iPhone dropping WiFi connection, you would need to reset the iPhone network settings by tapping Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings.

I don’t have Internet access even after having connected iPhone to WiFi

There is another common WiFi connectivity issue that you might experience on the iPhone. Once you successfully connect to a WiFi network, you do not have access to the Internet. Follow the steps below in order to try and resolve the issue:

additional login window shown upon connecting to wifi network on iphone

If you are trying to connect to a public WiFi network, which requires additional authentication (beyond having entered the correct WiFi password), please see this Apple-provided article: Understanding subscription Wi-Fi networks

reset network settings on iphone

If you are connected to your home WiFi network, check whether the rest of your devices and/or computers are connected to the same WiFi network and whether they have Internet access. If they do, reset the iPhone Network settings by tapping Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings

If none of your devices connected to the same WiFi network have Internet access, turn off your WiFi router and keep the device off for at least 30 seconds. Then turn back on the device and stand-by until the WiFi signal is restored. Turning off the WiFi router will in the vast majority of cases, reset and re-establish the router network settings. However, consult the user manual to learn more about how to reset network settings for your specific router.

If nothing helps, and you continue experiencing iPhone WiFi connectivity issues, be sure to contact Apple directly or schedule a visit to the Genius Bar in the nearest Apple Store. You iPhone might be up for replacement.

Before you replace the iPhone – back up your data

Before you opt for the solution of last resort – having the iPhone replaced – be sure to back up all the needed data in advance.

By krasimir

Krasimir is an avid marketing aficionado and a tech-support specialist in charge of the English-speaking market. He grew up in Bulgaria and on the island of Mauritius where he became passionate about windsurfing and photography.

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