How to Fix AirDrop Not Working on iPhone: 6 Ways

AirDrop not working? This guide will explain why AirDrop not working on iPhone and the solution to this problem.


By Lena / Updated on July 9, 2024

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AirDrop Not Working on iPhone 15

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 the update.

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

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 2022/2020, iPhone 13/12 (Pro Max/Pro/Mini), iPhone 14/15 (Pro Max/Pro/Plus), 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 AirDrop not working 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 > Reset (Transfer or Reset iPhone > Reset in iOS 15 and later) > 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

AirDrop alternative to share files across iOS devices

If all the above methods do not work, you may try other tools to help you transfer files. FoneTool is not an AirDrop-like tool, but its transfer function can give you a great experience of file transfer from iPhone to iPhone, iPhone to computer, computer to iPhone.

How FoneTool is different from AirDrop and AirDrop-like tools:

✓ Offline transfer process-Unaffected by the internet, you can transfer files stably over a USB connection.

✓ Supports a large number of files - Unlike AirDrop, FoneTool allows you to transfer many data at once.

✓ Faster transfer speed- It can transfer batch files in seconds. For example, you can transfer 100 photos in no more than 3 seconds.

✓ Simpler design and operation-The transfer task can be done with just a few clicks.

Now, free download FoneTool by clicking the icon below to see how it works.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7
Secure Download

Step 1. Connect your iPhone to computer with USB > open FoneTool > click Phone Transfer.

Step 2. Go to iPhone to PC > Click the plus icon to select the wanted photos, music, videos, contacts, and click OK.

choose photos

Step 3. Click Start Transfer to save files to the computer.

Step 4. When the task is finished, unplug the source iPhone and plug the target iPhone into the computer > go to PC to iPhone.

transfer to iphone

Step 5. Click the arrow icon to open and add the transferred files.

choose photos

Step 6. Click Start Transfer > click OK when the transfer is completed.


That’s all for how to fix AirDrop not working on iPhone. Hope one of the above methods can help you get out of trouble. It is more recommended to try FoneTool, especially if you are transferring multiple files.

If you like this guide, don’t hesitate to share it to help more people.

Lena · Editor
Lena is an editor of FoneTool, she covers backup & restore, and phone data management and so on. She enjoys helping people find solutions to their problems. She loves traveling, eating, reading and so on. She takes most of time with her family when she is not working.