How to Force Restart Any iPhone or iPad

How to Force Restart Any iPhone or iPad
Photo: Attila Fodemesi, Shutterstock

If your iPhone or iPad is frozen or not recognising touchscreen inputs, a forced restart may be necessary to get it working again. The force restart method allows you to shut down and reboot the iPhone without using the touchscreen.

Although it isn’t necessary very often, there will be times you’ll want to force your device to restart — in fact, I recently had to employ the method myself. In my case, I was connecting an iPhone to a Mac when the phone got stuck at the “Trust This Computer” pop-up. The pop-up froze, and none of the usual tricks to unfreeze it worked. (I tried calling the phone, but even the incoming call interface showed up below the pop-up, and I couldn’t answer the call.)

That left me with just one choice (other than waiting for the iPhone’s battery to die, which I was not patient enough to do): Force restart. Luckily, it’s quick and easy to do.

Force restart iPhones and iPads without a home button

If your iPhone or iPad has Face ID (and by extension, no home button), here’s how you can force it to restart quickly: Press volume up and release it, press volume down and release it, and finally, press and hold the power button. You can release the power button once the screen turns off. The Apple logo will appear on your screen, and your iPhone or iPad will restart.

The same steps can also force restart an iPhone 8 or an iPhone 8 Plus. Just press volume up, volume down, and hold the side button until these phones restart.

Force restart an iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, or an iPod touch (7th gen)

The force restart key combination is a bit different for iPhone 7, 7 Plus, and iPod touch. If you have one of these devices, you can force restart by pressing and holding the side (or top) button and the volume down button, until the Apple logo appears on screen.

Force restart an iPad with a home button, an iPhone 6s or older device, or an iPod touch (6th gen)

If you have an iPad with a home button, an iPhone 6s (or older), or an iPod touch (6th generation), you can force restart it quickly if you need to. Just press and hold the home button along with the side (or top) button until the Apple logo appears on screen.

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