"When I tried to update my iPhone 12 to iOS 16, the new available iOS file is not showing up, and instead, I see a message saying that ' Unable to Check for Update. An error occurred while checking for a software update.' What can I do to fix that and update my phone?"
The problem that iPhone or iPad unable to check for update error sometimes happens in OTA update. After clicking Software Update, the iPhone or iPad first shows "Checking for Update" and then ends up with the error "Unable to Check for Update". This problem is usually annoying, especially when it appears again and again, and you have no idea about the reason.
Here we provide 7 quick fixes for you to identify the reason or solve the problem. If you have already tried most of the common ways and think there may be a tricky system error, you can also go to Solution 7 directly to solve it with a third-party tool.
Solution 1. Make Sure Apple Servers Are Not Down
When your iPhone or iPad checks for update, it has to communicate with the Apple servers. If Apple servers are down, naturally your iPhone is unable to check for update. So, there is possibility that iOS 16 update failure is not caused by internal reason but some external elements. In order to check it, pay a visit to Apple System Status web page to see whether the servers are available.
If the icons show green, it means they are running normally. Then you can attribute the iPhone update failure to other reasons and try other alternatives to fix the issue. If there are yellow, red icons, or blue icons with annotations, you can wait for the servers getting back to normal and try to update once again later.
Solution 2. Ensure a Good Network Connection for Software Update
The "Unable to Check for Update" problem is usually due to a network issue. Since iOS OTA update requires a stable and smooth network condition, you need to make sure your iPhone/iPad has a good Wi-Fi signal strength.
If it seems that your Wi-Fi connection is weak while other devices can use it normally under the same connection, here are three ways to help you fix the network problem on your iPhone or iPad.
Head to Settings > Wi-Fi. Toggle off Wi-Fi for several minutes. Turn it back on again and reconnect. Then go to Software Update and see if your device is unable to check for iOS update.
2.Connect to Another Wi-Fi Network
If the reconnection doesn't work, you may need to try other working Wi-Fi networks. Head to Settings > Wi-Fi. Disconnect the current Wi-Fi network and connect to another effective one.
3.Reset Network Settings
If there is still an error in checking for software update on your iPhone or iPad, try to reset the network settings. Open Settings > General. Scroll down and tap Transfer or Reset iPhone. Tap on Reset Network Settings.
Solution 3. Change to Google's Public DNS
But you may also find that you cannot check for update on your iPhone while you can smoothly use other applications to watch videos or chat. In this case, you iPhone fails to update is probably not because of the weak network. So, you can instead try the following one that some users find it useful, which is to switch your Internet network to Google Public DNS.
Step 1. Head to Settings > Wi-Fi.
Step 2.Tap the blue info icon next to your current connecting Wi-Fi network.
Step 3. Tap on "Configure DNS" > Manual > Add Server and type the DNS servers: "126.96.36.199" or "188.8.131.52". Then, choose the DNS and click “Save”.
If none of the above methods work and your iPhone is still stuck on checking for update, the error is basically not caused by a network issue but a system issue or other. Read on for more solutions.
Solution 4. Force Restart iPhone/iPad
A simple but feasible way to repair some subtle system errors is to reboot your iPhone/iPad. After restarting your iPhone, head to the Software Update page to check whether it can update normally or not. Because rebooting is frequently used by most of the users and you are likely to know about the operation, we will not talk more about it here.
What if reboot still doesn't help? You can go further and try to force restart the iPhone or iPad that are unable to check for update on iOS 16. Different generations of iPhone have different ways to hard reset the phone.
Hard Reset iPhone 8/X/11/12/13/14/SE 2nd
Quickly press and release the Volume Up button, and do the same to the Volume Down button. Then press and hold the side (or top) button until the Apple logo appears.
- To force restart the iPad without a Home button, you can do the same way as this method.
After the hard reset, now you can go to Software Update page again see if there is an error occurred while checking for a software update.
Be notice that the iOS 16 supported devices only include the iPhone 8 or models that are later. Still, if you meet with problems when installing an update on iPhone 7 or previous Apple phones, you can try out the following resetting steps to fix the unable to check for update issue.
Hard Reset iPhone 7/7 Plus
Press and hold the Power button and the Volume Down button at the same time for several seconds till you see the Apple logo.
Hard Reset iPhone 5/6/SE 1st
Press and hold the Power button and Home button at the same time until the Apple logo appears. It usually talks about 10 seconds.
To force restart the iPad with a Home button, you can do the same way as this method.
Solution 5. Delete iOS 16 Beta Version Profile
Besides, there can also be a problem about your iOS files. If you have downloaded the previous iOS 16 Beta version on your iPhone/iPad, the new iOS update may not show up. To solve this, just delete the beta files firstly and then try to check for update again.
Step 1. Go to Settings > General > VPN & Device Management.
Step 2. Tap the iOS Beta Software Profile under Configuration Profile.
Step 3. Tap "Remove Profile" to delete the beta update profile.
Solution 6. Check for Update with iTunes
It could be frustrated after you've tried all the solutions above, your iPhone/iPad is still unable to check for update via OTA update. However, don’t give up now. It’s still possible to solve it with the help of some software. The first choice is to use iTunes to help you update your iPhone to the newest iOS version.
Step 1. Connect your iPhone/iPad to the computer.
Step 2. Launch the latest version of iTunes.
Step 3. Open the Summary tab.
Step 4. Click on "Check for Update" and then choose "Download and Update".
Step 5. Reboot your iPhone/iPad after the update and you'll get the newest iOS version on your device.
Solution 7. Check for Update with Third-Party Tool
If unluckily, all the common fixes fail to work, the best solution for you should be using a professional third-party tool to update your iPhone, for example, FonePaw iOS System Recovery.
It is an iOS system recovery tool that aims at solving different iOS system problems from small errors to big issues, such as iPhone update failure, iPhone stuck in headphone mode, iPhone black screen, etc. So, it can exactly help you bypass the iPhone unable to check for update problem and update your working iOS device to the latest iOS 16.
The software offers 3 modes to fix iOS issues. Among them, there is a Free Quick Fix mode that can solve simple problems like update failure with no charge. Besides, it’s fully compatible with all iPhone models including the newest iPhone 14.
Step 1. Download and install FonePaw iOS System Recovery on your PC/Mac.
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Step 2. Connect your iPhone to the computer. Then try Free Quick Fix which is free and repairs device without deleting any data.
If you cannot see such mode, please click Start > Standard Mode > Confirm. (Tip: Under standard mode, you can also update your iPhone without losing data).
Step 3. Follow the guide to put your iPhone in Recovery Mode.
Step 4. Check if the information of your device is correct or not. Choose the iOS update version you want and then click on Repair. The program will download the firmware file of the newest iOS 16 and get your iPhone updated.
Step 5. Keep your iPhone/iPad connected until the process is completed. Your iPhone/iPad will reboot and update be the latest iOS 16.
- If the first two modes don't work for the repairing and you want to use the Advanced Mode, be careful, for it will erase all the data on your iPhone/iPad.
Have you fixed the "Unable to Check for Update" on your iPhone/iPad successfully with any solution above? Hope this article can be of help. And if your issue cannot be fixed, welcome to drop your question to us.