How to Unfreeze a Frozen iPhone

By Avery Martin

Several troubleshooting options are available to recover an unresponsive iPhone.
i Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images

An iPhone might display a blank screen, the touch screen may fail to respond, or an app gone awry may prevent the device from functioning properly. Getting your iPhone working again may require you to perform a series of troubleshooting steps to pinpoint and rectify the problem without damaging your data. After you've corrected the issue, you should update the iOS software as well as all of your apps to remedy buggy software and improve the reliability and performance of your iPhone. When general troubleshooting steps don't resolve the issue, you can restore the device to its default settings using iTunes.

General Troubleshooting

Step 1

Plug your iPhone into the wall charger and let it charge for at least 15 minutes. Then check to see if charging the phone resolved the problem. Avoid using your computer to charge the device since the wall charger sends more power to the iPhone.

Step 2

Double-click the "Home" button, and then tap and hold on an app until the apps wiggle. Tap the "-" button on each app to close all of apps that are currently open.

Step 3

Press and hold the "Sleep/Wake" button and toggle the "Slide to Power Off" slider from left to right when it displays. If the prompt doesn't appear, press and hold the "Sleep/Wake" and "Home" buttons until the device shuts down. This may take from 15 to 60 seconds.

Step 4

Press the "Sleep/Wake" button to restart the iPhone.

Step 5

Tap "Settings," select "Settings" and then tap "General." Select any available iOS updates and choose the "Download" option to download the update. Tap "Install" after the download completes.

Backup and Restore

Step 1

Connect your iPhone to your computer using the provided USB connector cable.

Step 2

Click the "iPhone" button.

Step 3

Select the "Summary" tab and choose "Back Up Now."

Step 4

Click the "File" menu, select "Devices" and choose the option to transfer purchases from your iPhone.

Step 5

Click the "Restore iPhone..." button and select the "Back Up" option again.

Step 6

Click "Restore."

Step 7

Wait for iTunes to restore your device and swipe the "Slide to Set Up" slider from left to right. Follow the prompts to set up your device.

Step 8

Launch iTunes on your computer with your iPhone connected.

Step 9

Click the option to restore from a backup. Select the latest backup from the drop-down menu and click "Continue." Follow the remaining prompts to restore your iPhone.