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What to Do When Face ID is Not Available on iPhone X/XS/11

By Lois Green, Wednesday, April 15, 2020

With a simple glance, Face ID securely unlocks your iPhone using facial recognition. You can use it to sign into apps or authorize purchases from Apple Store or payment with Apple Pay, etc.

When your Face ID is not available, you may feel extremely inconvenient and want to fix this problem quickly. In this post, we will specify the reasons why your Face ID is not working and how to fix it.

Reasons for Face ID not available

Usually, iPhone X/XS/11 depends on the TrueDepth camera to capture accurate face data. It creates a depth map of your face and also captures an infrared image of your face.

When you find your Face ID not working, it could be a hardware issue with the TrueDepth camera or a software issue with the iOS system.

You can't replace a TrueDepth camera by yourself. But before you head to Apple Store, you can troubleshoot software issues that make Face ID not available with the following solutions.

Fix Face ID not available with a system recovery tool

Using a system recovery tool to fix the iOS system will be one of the most efficient ways to make your Face ID works again.

FonePaw iOS System Recovery is a useful tool for you if you want to get rid of those complicated troubleshooting steps.

It fixes your iOS problem including Face ID not available in a secure way and gives you clear instructions. Here is how it works:

Step 1 Download and enable FonePaw iOS System Recovery.

DownloadDownload

Step 2 Click Start and choose Standard Mode > Confirm.

Standard Mode

Step 3 Connect your iPhone to the computer via USB cable and unlock it.

Step 4 Choose your iPhone's model and iOS version.

Select Model

The screen will inform you to download the corresponding firmware package. Press Repair to continue. 

Step 5 When the firmware package is downloaded, do not disconnect your device to the computer and it will take a while to repair your phone.

Repair Completed

When the process finishes, your Face ID should be available again. You can download it and have a free trial by yourself.

Note:

Standard Mode will not delete anything on your phone.

Advanced Mode will erase all data and settings on your phone. If you haven't backed up your data before and the data is important, do not choose this option.

Except for FonePaw iOS System Recovery, the followings are other methods you could try.

Solution 1 Update your device to the latest version of iOS

A new iOS update usually introduces new features or fixes some bugs. If your Face ID is not working, check if your iOS is the newest version.

Go to Settings > General > Software Update > Download and Install.

Upgrade iOS iPhone

Check if the software update available and fix the problem.

Solution 2 Set Date & Time

When there is a problem with your software, try setting Date & Time on your iPhone X/XS/11. 

Go to Settings > General > Date & Time > turn on the Set Automatically option. 

Set Date And Time

Solution 3 Reset Face ID

Sometimes, reset the Face ID is an attempt to make the Face ID available again.

Go to Settings > Face ID & Passcode > Reset Face ID

Reset Face ID

Now, create a new Face ID and restart your phone.

Check if the new Face ID unlocks your phone without error.

Solution 4 Reset all settings

If reset Face ID doesn't work, then reset all settings.

Navigate to Settings > Reset > Rest All Settings

Reset All Settings

Enter the passcode to confirm the resetting.

Reset all settings will not erase your data but it will remove your preferences for Wi-Fi, Sounds, Notifications, Wallpaper, and so on.

Solution 5 Force restart

When you tried to start over and reset the Face ID, you receive the error message saying "your Face ID is not available, try setting up Face ID later."

Face ID Not Avaliable

In this situation, you can try the force restarting iPhone.

First, press the Volume Up then release.

Next, press the Volume Down then release.

Then press and hold the Power button until you see the Apple logo on the screen.

Force Restart iPhone 11

It won't erase any data on your phone and fix the software problem.

Solution 6 Put your iPhone in DFU Mode

DFU stands for the device firmware updates. Restoring iPhone in DFU mode with iTunes will completely restore your phone by erasing and reloading every line of code on your device. 

This should be the last method you try because it is the deepest restore and it will erase your data on the device. Thus, you need to back up your data first.  When everything is ready, enter the DFU mode of your iPhone and connect the iPhone X/XS/XR to iTunes to fix the Face ID problem.

When your iPhone is in DFU mode, a prompt will show up on your iPhone. Select Restore and confirm it.

Restore iPhone in DFU Mode

In addition to the methods above, you should make sure that nothing covers your notch and your face.

When you hold your iPhone, put it in portrait orientation and take off your hat, glasses, or mask. These steps make your Face ID recognize your face better.

Get into the Locked iPhone Quickly

If, by any chance, solutions above won't fix the problem and you forget your screen passcode, here is a fast way for you to get into the locked iPhone conveniently: FonePae iOS Unlocker. With it, you can unlock the phone without Face ID and screen passcode. Let's see how it works. 

First, download and install FonePaw iOS Unlocker.

Download  Download

Second, Choose Wipe Passcode from the three options.  It will remove the password on your iPhone to let you enter the phone successfully. 

iOS Unlocker Homepage

Note:

The other two features: Remove Apple ID and Screen Time are also useful. 

Remove Apple ID is applied to remove the forgotten Apple ID so that you can start up iPhone normally and sign in with a new account.

Screen Time can remove the Screen Time passcode so that you can reset a new one. 

Second,  connect the iPhone to the computer via USB cable and the program will detect the device type and model automatically. Check if the information is correct and click Start to continue. 

FonePaw iOS Unlocker will begin downloading the firmware package for your device. 

Download Firmware Package

Third, when it is downloaded, a prompt will ask you to enter "0000" to confirm the unlocking. Follow the instruction to continue. 

Unlock Confirm

Once it is confirmed, the unlocking process will begin. When the progress bar goes to 20%, your phone will get into the Recovery mode.

Unlocking iPhone

If your phone doesn't go to the recovery mode, a window will pop out and you can follow the instructions to put your phone into recovery mode.

Put iPhone In Recovery Mode

Fourth,  when the unlocking process finishes, your phone will be unlocked successfully.  

Unlock Successfully

Important:

Now, even if the Face ID is not available, or you forget the screen passcode, you can still get into the locked iPhone with FonePaw iOS Unlocker. But there are also a few things you should know:

First, FonePaw iOS unlocker is free to download and you need to register before the unlocking.

Second, all data will be erased after removing the password.

Third, you'd better make sure Find My iPhone is disabled. If Find My iPhone is enabled, you will need to enter the iCloud password to reset iPhone after unlocking.

Fourth, your device will be updated to the latest iOS version after unlocking.

At last, if you've tried all the methods above but nothing works, you'd better take your iPhone X/XS/11 to the Apple Store to check for the hardware issues.

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