By Lena / Last update June 7, 2021

AirDrop Not Working on iPhone 12

I can't send my pictures to my iPad because when I choose AirDrop after tapping the share icon, nothing happens! What is the deal? I've checked to make sure my Bluetooth is turned on in both areas, but the AirDrop is still not working! Help!!

- Question from Apple Forum


Have you encountered the same problem as this user? AirDrop is a convenient feature of iPhone that allows users to share files wirelessly. However, like all wireless tech, AirDrop can be moody and sometimes refuses to work. Why AirDrop not working on iPhone and how to solve this problem? You will find the answer after reading this guide.

Why Is My AirDrop Not Working on My iPhone?

Let us first look at the reason why AirDrop not working on iPhone.

● Wrong AirDrop Settings. AirDrop will only work when all conditions are met. Maybe Wi-Fi/Bluetooth is not turned on or maybe you have chosen the wrong level.
● Software Glitch. A minor glitch on your phone or a deeper software problem will cause the AirDrop not working problem.
● iOS Update. The update will bring new features as well as bugs. Some users reported that AirDrop not working after updating to iOS 14.

Now you know why AirDrop not working on iPhone. Keep reading to see how to troubleshoot the problem to make AirDrop work properly.

How to Fix AirDrop Not Working on iPhone/iPad

Here are some methods that can help you fix AirDrop not working issue.

These methods work for all iPhone & iPad models including:
iPhone 6s/6s Plus, iPhone 7/7 Plus, iPhone 8/8 Plus, iPhone X/XR/XS (Max), iPhone 11 (Pro Max), iPhone SE 2020, iPhone 12 (Pro Max/Pro/mini), iPad Pro/Air/mini.

Tip 1. Check AirDrop Settings

As we said before, AirDrop will only work when all conditions are met. First you should go to have a check if all the settings are correct.

> Turn on Wi-Fi and Bluetooth on two devices.

If they are already enabled, you can go to Settings to toggle off and on Wi-Fi/Bluetooth to have a try.

> If either of the devices has Personal Hotspot on, please turn it off.

> Check three discovery settings.

There are three levels: Off, Contacts Only, and Everyone. If you are trying to AirDrop to someone that is not in your contacts, you should choose Everyone.

> Make sure two devices are nearby and within the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth range (30 feet and preferably closer).

If all settings are correct but you still meet the AirDrop not working problem, please move on to get other fixes.

Tip 2. Log out/in iCloud

When you choose Contacts Only, your iPhone/iPad is only visible to individuals in your Contacts. And two devices need to be logged into iCloud. You can try to log out and then log in iCloud. This may help solve the problem.

Go to Settings > Tap [your name] > Tap Sign Out > Enter your Apple ID and password > Tap Turn Off > Choose the data you want to keep on iPhone > Tap Sign Out > Tap Sign Out again to confirm.

Sign out of iCloud

Tip 3. Hard Reset iPhone

Force restart can help clear out all background apps and refresh your device’s memory, which can fix minor glitches that cause AirDrop not working on iPhone/iPad issue. This is a method worth trying.

● Force restart iPhone 8 and later & iPad with Face ID :

Quickly press and release the Volume Up button > Quickly press and release the Volume Down button > Press and hold the Side/Power button until you see the Apple logo.

● Force restart iPhone 7/7 Plus:

Press and hold the Top button and Volume Down button together > Release both buttons when the Apple logo appears.

● Force restart iPhone 6s, SE and earlier & iPad with Home button:

Hold down the Home button and the Top (or Side) button at the same time > Release both buttons when the Apple logo appears.

Tip 4. Reset Network Settings

AirDrop requires a Wi-Fi connection. If there’s a Wi-Fi connection problem, you may find that AirDrop not working on iPhone. In this case, you can try to reset network settings to get rid of any Internet connection errors.

Go to Settings > Tap General > Tap Reset > Tap Reset Network Settings > Enter your passcode to confirm > Wait for the restart > Enter the Wi-Fi passcode to rejoin the Wi-Fi to see if it resolves the issue.

Tip 5. Reset All Settings

The AirDrop not working issue may happen due to a deep software problem. In this case, you can try to reset all settings to troubleshoot the problem. After the reset, all settings will return to default but no data will be erased.

Go to Settings > Tap General > Tap Reset > Tap Reset All Settings > Enter your passcode > Tap Reset All Settings again to confirm.

Reset All Settings

Tip 6. Update to the Latest iOS Version

Sometimes, software update can occasionally cause trouble, but other times, software update will fix them. Go to Settings > Tap General > Tap Software Update and see if there is a new version of iOS available.

iOS Software Update

Tip 7. AirDrop Files via Other Tools

If all the above methods do not work, you may try other tools to help you transfer files. Actually, there are many AirDrop-like apps that work like AirDrop. What’s more, they can be used on Windows computer. Xender, SHAREit, Snapdrop, and Filedrop are the most recommended ones.

If you want to AirDrop data between two iDevices, you can download these AirDrop-like apps from App Store. For Windows computers, you can visit the web and connect your iPhone with your computer to achieve the transfer.


If you are interested, you can refer to these two guides to get more info:

AirDrop for Windows 10, 8, 7 PC Free Download

How to AirDrop from iPhone to Windows Computer?


That’s all for how to fix AirDrop not working on iPhone/iPad. Hope one of the above methods can help you get out of trouble. If you like this guide, don’t hesitate to share it to help more people.