Need to Unlock a Disabled iPhone? Here's How to Do It

 Unlock a Disabled Iphone
Photo : Maurizio Pesce from Milan, Italia / CC BY (

Forgot your iPhone passcode, or it got disabled after so many failed attempts? It happens to the best of us. However, all is not lost. If you don't have time to visit an Apple technician, there are other ways for you to unlock a disabled iPhone.

iPhone gets disabled for one minute after six failed attempts to enter a passcode. And if you reached the threshold of ten failed attempts, it locks itself and will show a message "connect to iTunes."

How do you unlock a disabled iPhone?

Fixing a disabled iPhone requires erasing all your data and settings. So, if you have planned for the worst and backed up your phone, then your data is fine.

There are three ways to reset and unlock your iPhone: through iTunes, iCloud via "Find my phone," and iPhone's Recovery Mode.

If you have access to a computer, you can go ahead and unlock it using iTunes. If you want to use iCloud, then keep your Apple ID and passcode handy. Also, your iPhone should be connected to the internet prior to getting disabled and the "Find my iPhone" feature is activated. Otherwise, there is the data recovery mode available for you.

Unlock iPhone via iTunes

Connect your iPhone to the computer. If you are using a macOS Catalina, you need to open the Finder menu then select your device. You can then choose the "Restore iPhone" option. Otherwise, you can launch iTunes and tap the phone icon. You can then select the "Restore" option and then follow the prompt. That will erase the data and allow you to set your iPhone up.

Unlock iPhone using iCloud

If you can't connect your iPhone to your computer, your other option would be to use the iCloud. Visit the iCloud website and then sign in using your iCloud Apple ID and then select your device. You can then tap the "Find my iPhone." Once your device is found, you can select the "Erase iPhone" option.

Unlock iPhone using iPhone's Recovery Mode

If the above conditions are not in your favor, then your last option is to use the Recovery Mode. Connect the disabled iPhone to the computer and launch iTunes. You then need to force restart your phone. Steps will vary depending on the iPhone model.

iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X or later

Press and hold the iPhone side button and any of the iPhone's volume buttons. You should see the power slider appear on the screen. You can then turn off the phone by dragging the slider. Connect your iPhone to the computer while you are holding the side button and wait until the recovery mode screen appears.

iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus

Press and hold the iPhone's side button and wait until the power slider appears. Turn off your iPhone by dragging the slider. Then you can connect your phone to a computer while still holding the side button. Once the iPhone recovery mode screen appears, you can then remove the passcode.

iPhone SE (1st generation), and iPhone 6s and earlier models

Press and hold the iPhone's top button or the side button. The power off slider should appear after that. Turn off your iPhone by dragging the power slider. You can then connect the iPhone to the computer while still holding the phone's Home button. Wait until you see the recovery mode appear on the screen.

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