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iPhone 7 Plus Fails to Download iOS 11 Over the Air

By Emily Watson, Thursday, November 02, 2017

iOS 11 is here. It only takes 3 steps to get the iOS update over the air(OTA): open Settings, tap General > Software Update, choose Install Now. However, the OTA software update doesn't go well all the time. Some users are unable to install iOS 11 update on their iPhone 8/8 Plus/7/7 Plus/6/6s/6s Plus/5s. If iOS 11 update also fails to download on your iPhone, please read on.

iOS 11 Update Failed

Why Won't My iPhone Update to iOS 11?

1) Failed to reach Apple's update server. When trying to download iOS 11 update on your iPhone, it gives one of these errors:

  • "Unable to Verify Update";

  • "Unable to Check for Update";

  • "Software Update Failed: An error occurred downloading iOS 11";

  • "Unable to Install Update: An error occurred installing iOS 11".

iOS 11 Update Errors

2) It takes a long time to download the iOS update. How long does the iOS 11 update take? Well, it depends on the size of the update and your current internet speed. If you're upgrading from iOS 10/9 to the latest iOS 11.0.3, the iOS 11 update could be over 2GB, while the update from one iOS 11 version to another, for example, from iOS 11.0.1 to iOS 11.0.3, will be something around 200 MB. Thus the time to complete iOS 11 updates could vary from 5 minutes to 2 hours.

3) There is not enough space for the iOS update on your iPhone. It won't be a problem for a new device like iPhone 7/7 Plus. But if you are using an older 16 GB iPhone 5s/6/6 Plus, you may need to make room for the iOS 11 update. 

4) You have iOS 11 beta update on your iPhone 7/7 Plus. If you haven't deleted the previous update, you may won't receive the newest OTA update. 

5) You have a weak or unstable network connection.

6) iOS 11 update never completes and the iPhone gets stuck at Apple logo with progress bar. (How to Fix iPhone Stuck on Apple Logo)

Unable to Download/Install iOS 11? Here is What to Do

1. Reboot iPhone and Download iOS 11 Update Again 

Whenever you fail to download or install an iOS update, try to reboot your iPhone first.

Simply power off and on your iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch. If the iPhone is stuck during the iOS 11 update, force restart the iPhone: 

  • For iPhone 6/6s/6s Plus or earlier, press and hold on the Sleep/Wake + Home buttons until the Apple logo appears.

  • For iPhone 7/7 Plus/8/8 Plus/X, press and hold on the Power + Volume Down button.

Force Restart iPhone 7

After the iPhone reboots, try to get the iOS 11 update again.

2. Keep Your iPhone Connected to a Strong Wi-Fi 

A strong Wi-Fi is critical for iOS OTA (over the air) update. When the network is poor, you are liable to get the ‘Verify Update', ‘Software Update Failed' error or the iOS 11 update will take forever to complete. When the update takes too long or the iPhone fails to connect to Apple server, try switching to a faster Wi-Fi.

Also, it is better to keep the iPhone connected to a power source during the iOS 11 OTA update so that the iPhone won't fail to download the update because of battery drain.

3. Delete Previous iOS Update

 If you are unable to download/install the latest iOS 11 on iPhone 7/6/5, try to delete the previous iOS update, such as iOS 11 beta. 

  • Open Settings, choose General > iPhone Storage.

  • Wait until the list of apps is loaded. Scroll down and find the iOS update.

  • Tap the update and choose Delete Update.

Delete iOS Update

You can also delete the iOS 11 beta version from Settings > General > Profile > Delete Profile. After deleting the previous update, you can now re-download and install the newest iOS 11.

4. Make Space for iOS 11 Update 

If your iPhone is a 16GB/32 GB version, you may want to make enough space for iOS update. Normally, when there is not enough room for download and install iOS 11 update, the iPhone will automatically remove app data to free up more space. If it is lack of storage, you need manually free up storage:

  • In iOS 10: Go to Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage and tap Manage Storage.

  • In iOS 11: Go to Settings > General > iPhone Storage.

5. Update iOS 11 with iTunes 

If your iPhone still won't update to iOS 11, you may want to give up over the air (OTA) update and turn to iTunes. Connect your iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch to latest version of iTunes on your computer and get your device update to the latest iOS version.

6. An Alternative to iTunes for iOS 11 Update

If you fail to download and install iOS 11 update over the air while iTunes is not an option for you, you can also download and install iOS 11 update via FonePaw iOS System Recovery. Download iOS 11 update with iOS System Recovery is a more preferable option because:

You can avoid the overloaded Apple server and get the iOS 11 update more quickly. You can choose not only the newest iOS update but all the available iOS versions for your iPhone. iOS System Recovery also can be used to fix frozen/bricked/dead iPhone.

  • Download iOS System Recovery on your Windows/Mac.

  • Put your iPhone in recovery mode. (Detailed guide on how to enter recovery mode on iPhone/iPad).

  • Launch iOS System Recovery on your computer and connect iPhone in recovery mode to the program.

    Launch iOS System Recovery

  • And click Start to begin. The program will detect and identify that your iPhone is in recovery mode, click Confirm.

    Confirm iPhone in Recovery Mode

  • The info of your iPhone will be presented. Make sure the info match with your devices and choose the iOS 11 version that you want.

  • Click Repair and the program will begin to update your iPhone to the iOS 11 version. After the update, your iPhone will reboot.


Whether to get the iOS 11 over the air or install the iOS 11 via iTunes/iOS System Recovery, you should make a backup of all your important data on your iPhone before the update just in case anything bad may happen during the update.

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