Having your iPhone refuse to unlock while displaying an “iPhone is disabled” message is frightening. If you have forgotten your passcode or managed to get locked out of your iOS device like this poor father until the 22nd century, this panic will only increase.
Fortunately, not all hope is lost. Here’s what might have happened to your priceless smartphone to cause it to become disabled, as well as how to get it working again. We also have some advice on how to avoid getting the “iPhone is disabled” message in the future.
After six failed passcode attempts in a row, an iPhone will turn off one minute. You will be blocked for 5 minutes by the seventh improper passcode attempt, 15 min for the 8th attempt, and 10th by one hour.
You will receive the message iPhone is Disabled; Connect to iTunes if you have completed ten attempts and still have not entered the correct passcode.
You have a couple of methods available for your device to recover if you have a disabled iPhone. These methods for recovery are best when your iPhone has recently been backed up to iCloud or iTunes. Otherwise, you will probably lose some of your content, however, these steps still worth taking to get your iPhone back to work.
If you receive an “iPhone is disabled” alert, Apple recommends this step-by-step recovery directive.
First, on your Mac or PC, open iTunes, but not connect your device to your computer. It’s up to your phone what you do next.
- For the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, SE (2020), or an iPhone X or later model: Press the side button and hold one of the volume buttons until the slider power is displayed. Turn your slider off your device. Stick with your device and hold the side button on your computer. Keep holding the button on your side until you see your phone’s recovery mode screen.
- For the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus: Press the side (or top) button and hold until the slider is powered off. Turn your slider off your device. Connect your computer with your device while holding down the volume button. Keep holding down the volume button until you see your phone’s recovery mode screen.
- For the iPhone 6s or earlier: Hold down the side (or top) button and press until the slider is powered off. Turn your appliance off. Turn off. Connect your device while holding the home button to your computer. Continue holding the home button until you see your phone’s recovery mode screen.
The iTunes app will ask you if you want your device to be restored or updated. Select Restore. Restore. iTunes is going to download your device software.
Wait until the end of the process. You can then set up your device and use it.
Restore Your iPhone with iTunes
There’s another variation of Apple’s recommended iPhone recovery method using iTunes
- Connect your iPhone to a computer that you normally sync with.
- Click the iTunes Restore button.
- Follow the on-screen directions, and your iPhone should be recovered in a matter of minutes.
Using iCloud to recover your iPhone
If you don’t want to deal with iTunes, you can use iCloud to restore your disabled iPhone in a roundabout way.
- Open a tab on your machine and go to icloud.com/find.
- Log-in to Your iCloud account.
- At the top of the screen, select All Devices.
- Choose the disabled device of yours.
- Click erase for confirmation.
- Enter the password for your Apple ID to authenticate your device, and it will power up just like any new iPhone.
- Get through iPhone set up and restore your device via iTunes or iCloud using your latest backup.
Can I do anything else about the message “iPhone disabled?”
If neither of the methods worked for you, your best bet is that your handicapped iPhone should be brought to an Apple Store or to a certified third-party repair service at a service meeting. An Apple Expert can help you erase and restore your device.