Can’t Download Apps on Your iPhone? Try Out These 7 Fixes!

Although Apple’s iPhones are great devices when it comes to productivity, it is the apps that users get from the App Store that do most of the heavy lifting.

On the Apple App Store, there are now nearly 2 million third-party apps and games available, with more and more being added every other day. However, what do you do when you cannot download or update apps on your iPhone?

So, if you are someone who is not able to download new apps on your iPhone or update the existing ones, you have come to the right place.

In this in-depth article, I am going to tell you why you cannot download apps on your iPhone and also provide you with the fixes that you can try to resolve the issue on your iOS device.

Here’s Why You Can’t Download Apps on iPhone!

Now, there can be a plethora of reasons why you are not able to download apps on your iPhone. According to Apple’s official support page, an issue with your payment method or a pending payment could create this issue.

However, there are many other reasons that might be preventing you from downloading apps on your iPhone.

So, if you are facing the issue on your iOS or iPadOS device and cannot download or update apps from the App Store, try out the fixes listed right below.

1) Check Your Internet Connection

More often than not, an issue with the internet connection of your iPhone or iPad could prevent you from downloading or updating apps on the App Store. It is a given fact that you will need an active internet network, a Wi-Fi connection, or a 4G network, to access apps and games on the App Store.

Hence, if your Wi-Fi stops working or your mobile data plan expires, your iPhone or iPad will not be able to access the App Store. In this case, you will not be able to download new apps, update existing apps, or even view the apps and games listed on the App Store.

So, before you move on to the following fixes, I’d suggest you check if your iPhone is connected to an active Wi-Fi network or a 4G network, and then try to download apps on your iPhone.

2) Enable Mobile Data for App Downloads/ Updates

Another common reason why you are not able to download or update apps on your iPhone could be misconfigured settings on your device.

You see if you are using a 4G network and the Mobile Data option is turned off for the App Store, you will not be able to access the digital marketplace on your device.

In this case, follow the steps below to turn on Mobile Data for the App Store on your iPhone:

Step 1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.

Step 2. Go to the App Store settings.

Step 3. Tap the toggle beside the Mobile Data option to turn it on.

Now that you have turned on the Mobile Data option for the App Store on your iPhone, you should be able to access the App Store, download new apps, and update existing apps using your mobile data. However, make sure to keep a track of your data balance when using mobile data for app downloads.

3) Restart App Store

If turning on the Mobile Data option did not work for you, another simple fix that you can try to bring back the ability to download apps from the App Store is force closing the app and restarting it again. The App Store sometimes might crash due to system-level problems or server-side issues.

In this case, you can force close the App Store app on your iPhone and restart it again. To do this:

Step 1. With the App Store opened on your iPhone, swipe up from the bottom to enter the app switcher mode.

Step 2. Now tap and hold the App Store window and swipe all the up to force close the app.

Step 3. Open the App Store from your iPhone home screen again.

4) Check App Store Server Status

Now, another thing you can try when you cannot download apps on your iPhone is to check if there is an issue on Apple’s side or not. You can go to this link to check the server status of all of Apple’s services and platforms. You can find the App Store right at the top.

System Status on apple.com

Here, if you see the dot beside the App Store listing is red or yellow instead of green, it means that Apple is currently facing some server-side issues with the App Store.

In this case, all you have to do is wait for the company to resolve the issue in their App Store server. Once it comes back online, you will be able to download and update apps from the App Store on your device as usual.

5) Add a Payment Method on Your iPhone

Now, if the above methods did not fix the app not being downloaded on iPhone issue on your device, you can try adding/ updating the payment method for your Apple ID on your iPhone.

What many users do not know is that you need to have at least one up-to-date payment method added to your Apple ID to download apps and games, even the free ones, from the App Store.

So, if you do not have a payment method added to your Apple ID or if the payment mode is expired/ not updated, you might not be able to download apps on your iPhone. To add or update the payment method on your iPhone, follow the steps right below.

Step 1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.

Step 2. Tap your profile picture at the top.

Step 3. Tap the Payment and Shipping option.

Step 4. On the following page, tap the Add Payment Method button.

Step 5. Choose the type of payment method you want to add to your Apple ID and fill in the necessary details.

After you add a payment method to your Apple ID, open the App Store and check if you are able to download new apps on your iPhone or not.

With the payment method added/ updated for your Apple ID, you should be able to download and update the apps on your device easily.

6) Re-Login to App Store

If the apps not downloading on iPhone issue still persists for your device, you might want to log out of the App Store and re-login to it with your Apple ID. To do this:

Step 1. Open the App Store on your iPhone.

Step 2. Tap your profile picture at the top-right.

Step 3. Scroll all the way down to the bottom and tap the Sign Out button.

Step 4. After signing out, scroll back up on the same page and re-login to App Store using the same Apple ID that you have used to sign in to your iPhone.

Following this process, the apps-not-downloading issue on your iPhone should be fixed.

7) Reset iPhone Settings

Now, if all the above methods to fix the apps-not-downloading issue on your iPhone fail, it is time to reset the settings of your iPhone.

Resetting the settings of your iPhone does not delete your data. It simply reverts all the settings changes that you made on your iPhone and brings the iPhone back to its default settings.

To reset the settings on your iPhone, follow the steps right below:

Step 1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.

Step 2. Go to General.

Step 3. Scroll to the bottom and tap the Transfer and Reset option.

Step 4. Tap the Reset button 

Step 5. Select the Reset All Settings option. You might need to provide your Apple ID and password.

Now, wait for the reset process to complete. Following completion, open the App Store and check whether or not you can download apps on your iPhone.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1) Why is my iPhone not letting me download new apps?

There can be a number of reasons why you are not able to download new apps on your iPhone. These reasons can range from a faulty internet connection to server-side issues for the App Store.

2) How to sign out of App Store on iPhone?

To sign out of the App Store on your iPhone, you simply need to open the App Store, go to your profile by tapping the profile picture at the top-right, scroll down to the bottom, and tap the Sign Out button.

3) How to manually update apps from App Store on iPhone?

To manually update apps from the App Store on your iPhone, open the App Store on your device and tap the profile picture at the top right. On the following page, you will find the list of available app updates along with an Update button beside each of them, which you can tap to update each app manually.

4) How to prioritize app downloads on iPhone?

When you are downloading multiple apps on your iPhone, you can long-press an app icon, which is currently downloading, on your iPhone home screen, and tap the Prioritize Download button to get that app ready on your device faster than the other downloads.

Final Words

So, these are some of the tried and tested fixes that you can try if you cannot download new apps on your iPhone.

I hope at least one of the above methods works for you and that you are able to download and update the apps and games on your iPhone again. And if any of them do work for you, let us know in the comments. As usual, I will see you at the next one.

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