How to Fix iPhone Stuck on Preparing Update

Wondering why your iPhone is stuck on preparing update?

iPhones are one of the best-selling products of Apple. They release new models every year, along with a new version of iOS. 

Apple also provides over five years of support to iPhones. This means that users will continue to receive software updates and enjoy new features iOS has to offer without updating their devices. 

However, some users reported that their iPhones are stuck on preparing update. 

When this happens, your iPhone won’t continue installing the software update. Due to this, you can’t enjoy new features, and you can be vulnerable online. 

There are several reasons for this issue. First, it can be due to an error that may have occurred while downloading the update file. On the other hand, it can also be due to slow network connections, corrupted data, or improper configurations. 

In this guide, we will show you how to fix your iPhone if it’s stuck on preparing update. 

Let’s get started!

1. Restart Your Device. 

If you encounter issues with your iPhone, the first thing you should do is restart it. This should reload your resources and eliminate temporary errors or glitches that may have occurred during use. 

Here’s what you need to do: 

For iPhone X, 11, 12, or later: 

  1. Hold down the Volume Down button and Side button until the ‘Slide to Power Off’ prompt appears. 
  2. Now, drag the slider to the right and wait for 30 seconds. 
  3. Press the Side button afterward to turn on your device. 
Restart iPhone

For iPhone 6, 7, 8, or SE: 

  1. Locate the Power button on your device. 
  2. Now, hold the button until the ‘Slide to Power Off’ prompt shows up.
  3. Drag the slider to the right and wait for 30 seconds before turning on your device. 
Force Restart

Once done, go back to settings and see if you can now install the update. 

2. Charge Your iPhone. 

iOS requires at least 50% battery before you can install updates. If your iPhone is below 50%, it explains why it’s stuck on preparing update. Make sure that your device is at least 70% or higher before installing the update. 

On the other hand, you can simply plug in your wall charger, and the update should push through. 

3. Free Up Storage. 

You’ll need some storage space before you can install updates on your iPhone. If your iPhone is stuck on preparing update, it’s possible that there’s no storage left for your device to extract and install the latest version of iOS. 

In this case, you can follow the steps below to free up some storage: 

  1. First, launch Settings on your iOS device. 
  2. After that, go to General and tap on iPhone Storage
  3. Lastly, identify the apps, files, or media that you no longer need and delete them. 
iphone stuck on preparing update

Restart your iPhone afterward and check if you can now install updates. 

4. Check Your Network Connection. 

A slow or unstable internet connection could also be the reason you can’t update your iPhone. Since you are downloading data from the internet, you’ll need a stable connection to avoid issues. 

To check if your network is the problem, perform a test using to measure its current speed.

iphone stuck on preparing update

If the result indicates a problem with your connection, restart your modem or router to re-establish the link with your ISP’s servers. Unplug your router from the outlet and wait for at least five seconds before plugging it back in. 

Restart Router

Once done, re-run the test and check if the problem is solved. If not, contact your service provider and ask them to fix the issue. 

5. Reset Network Settings. 

There might be something wrong with your network configurations that causes issues while downloading updates. To rule this out, we suggest resetting your network settings back to defaults. 

Here’s how you can reset your network settings: 

  1. Go to your home screen and tap on Settings
  2. Next, go to the General tab and tap on Transfer or Reset iPhone
  3. After that, choose Reset
  4. Finally, tap the Reset Network Settings option and follow the prompts. 
Reset All Settings

Once done, reconnect to your network and check if the problem is solved.

6. Delete the Update and Reset. 

You can also try removing the existing update file on your iPhone and redownloading it on your iPhone. This way, we can ensure that there are no issues with the update file and there are no missing resources. 

See the steps below to delete your update files: 

  1. On your home screen, tap on the Settings app to launch it.
  2. Now, go to the General tab. 
  3. Access the iPhone Storage tab and look for the update file. 
  4. Tap on it and choose Delete Update
  5. After that, head to General > Software Update
  6. Tap on Download and Install to complete the process. 
Download and Install

Wait for the update to finish downloading and see if it will get installed. 

7. Force Restart Your iPhone. 

Some users were able to solve the update issue on their iPhones by force restarting it. This is similar to removing the battery on old phones, which resets caches and clears temporary data. 

  1. First, press the Volume Up button on your iPhone once. 
  2. Now, quickly press the Volume Down button
  3. Hold down the Side button afterward and release it once the Apple logo appears. 
iphone stuck on preparing update

Go back to Settings > General > Software Update and see if you can now install the latest version of iOS. 

8. Contact Apple Support. 

If none of the solutions above worked, there might be something wrong with your iPhone that needs to be checked by a professional. 

In this case, we recommend that you visit Apple’s support page and get in touch with a representative to ask for assistance regarding the issue you’ve been experiencing. In your report, make sure to include the model of your iPhone and the iOS version you are trying to download. 

drag and drop not working on iphone

While waiting for a response, you can also check the guides on their page and see if you can find other solutions. 

That brings us to the end of our guide for fixing your iPhone if it’s stuck on preparing update. For your questions and other concerns, please let us know in the comment section, and we’ll do our best to answer them. 

If this guide helped you, please share it. 🙂


  • John Sixto

    John is a staff writer at Saint and comes from a SAP ABAP development background. He has a Bachelors in IT and has been writing since 2018, with over 500 posts published. He loves to build PCs and has a deep curiosity in understanding how different components and configurations work. John spends hundreds of hours at a time, researching and testing the software and apps, before he proceeds to write about it. LinkedIn X (Twitter) Website

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *