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How to fix an Apple iPhone 7 that won’t play YouTube videos [Troubleshooting Guide]

Many things these days already have mobile versions. With the availability of high end smartphones, people have the luxury to do almost everything with their mobile phones. Other than the usual calling and texting functions, you can now watch and play your favorite movies and songs with just a tap of your finger. Given the rising demand of mobile services, web-based tools now have mobile versions in a form of apps for both Android and iOS devices. One of the widely used mobile apps nowadays is YouTube. More and more people are becoming fond of streaming YouTube videos as they would desire.

However, some iPhone 7 users were unable to obtain the same positive experience when attempting to play YouTube videos on their iOS device. Some couldn’t get to play certain videos while others couldn’t play any at all. When they tried to do so, they’re prompted with an error. What could have possibly caused these YouTube errors to occur on the iPhone 7 and how to fix them? If by any change you too are troubled by the same issue and need help in resolving it, then this content is for you.

Before going any further though, if you have other concerns with your new iPhone, make sure you drop by our iPhone 7 troubleshooting page for we have already started supporting the device. Moreover, if you need further assistance, you can always contact us by completing our iPhone issues questionnaire and providing us with sufficient information about the problem.

Possible reasons as to why your iPhone 7 won’t load or play YouTube videos

What you are dealing with right now is a software issue. It could be a glitch on the YouTube channel, video file, or your iPhone app. Often times problems like this are due to incompatible file format, corrupted file, or software glitches. Incompatible file format means that the YouTube video you are trying to play or load may not be compatible with your iPhone’s software. Typically the compatible video file format for iPhone is MP4. You may also encounter errors when attempting to load or play YouTube videos that are corrupted. In this case, the video file itself is broken and so it won’t play. In the case where software glitches are to blame, it could be the YouTube app on your iPhone 7 has gone rogue and stopped working. This can happen to any of your iPhone apps at any time.

There are also some cases where YouTube videos won’t play due to wireless connectivity issues on the iPhone. This is likely the case if you are using Wi-Fi to watch YouTube videos on your iPhone 7. You need to deal with Wi-Fi issues first in order to fix the problem on playing YouTube videos on your device.

Potential solutions and workarounds

Considering that the probable cause is on the software layer, you have a higher chance of resolving the problem on your end. Highlighted below are possible solutions and suggested workarounds that are used by other iPhone users in resolving problems with YouTube videos that won’t load or play on their iOS device. You may opt to give any of these methods a try and see how it works on your end.

First Solution: Soft reset or reboot.

Consider this among the first things to do when dealing with software-related issues on your iPhone. Majority if not all minor software or apps glitches are rectified by a reboot, otherwise known as soft reset on the device. If this is the first time you encounter a problem or error when attempting to play YouTube videos on your iPhone 7, then go for a soft reset.

  • To soft reset your iPhone 7, press and hold the Power (Sleep/Wake) button until the Slide to Power Off screen appears. Drag the slider to power off your iPhone completely. After 30 seconds, press and hold the Power button again until the Apple logo appears.

In the case where the YouTube app has caused your iPhone screen to freeze or become unresponsive, you can do a force restart instead.

  • To force restart your iPhone 7, press and hold the Power and Volume Down buttons simultaneously for a few seconds and then release both buttons when the Apple logo shows up.

Aside from being effective solutions to fix minor glitches, both methods are deemed safe as they won’t affect any data on your device.

When your iPhone is finished booting up, try to open the YouTube app, play the video again and see if it works.

Second Solution: Work on your YouTube Apps

If performing soft reset or force restart won’t do any good and YouTube videos are still not working on your iPhone 7, the next option for you to try is troubleshooting YouTube app. It is possible that the problem is triggered by the app you are using to watch YouTube videos. To rule this out from the possible culprits, try closing and relaunching the app. Doing so will give the app a fresh start if something went wrong the first time it was opened.

  • To close the YouTube app, open the App Switcher by double-pressing the Home button on your iPhone. When the App Switcher opens, you will see a list of apps that are currently open on your iPhone. Locate the YouTube app you are using and then swipe up the app off the screen to close it.

Reboot your iPhone again, open the YouTube app, then try to play a video.

Third Solution: Update your YouTube app

Installing updates on your YouTube app can likely fix the problem especially if it’s triggered by some bugs affecting the YouTube app’s normal functions. Aside from adding new features, developers update their apps regularly to patch up software bugs including the one you’re dealing with right now. With that said, check and see if there is any update available for your YouTube app. You can start by heading to the App Store, the scroll down to the bottom right corner of your iPhone display, then tap Updates.

You will see a notification if an update is available. If there is, tap the Update button located right next to the app then follow the rest of the onscreen instructions.

Fourth Solution: Uninstall and re-install YouTube app

Some software issues are more complex and complicated. Often times, uninstalling the app might be the only key to resolving the underlying cause. But please note that you will likewise lose all of your settings from that app as they will be erased from your iPhone in the process. You will need to download this information again as if you do it for the first time when the app is reinstalled. Your YouTube account will not be deleted though so there’s no need to worry on that matter.

Here’s how to uninstall the app:

  1. Lightly press and hold the icon of your YouTube app. Don’t press it too hard because doing so will activate 3D Touch on your iPhone.
  2. When you see the app starts to jiggle and the X appears on the upper-left corner of every app icon, tap the X on your YouTube app.
  3. Press Delete to uninstall the app and confirm action
  4. Reboot your iPhone.
  5. Reinstall the app by going to the App Store.
  6. Tap the Search tab then type in the name of your preferred YouTube app.
  7. Tap Get to download the app.
  8. Tap Install next to your preferred YouTube app. Doing so will reinstall the app on your iPhone 7.

Try to play your YouTube videos again and see if you’re now able to do so.

Fifth Solution: Work on your Wi-Fi network connectivity.

Should the problem is tied to connectivity issues, toggling Wi-Fi off and back on might be able to help. Similar to switching your iPhone off and back on, switching the Wi-Fi switch off and back on can also fix minor software bugs that might have caused a bad Internet connection on your device. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Tap Wi-Fi.
  3. Toggle the Wi-Fi switch to turn Wi-Fi off. When the switch turns gray, it means that Wi-Fi is off. Wait for a few seconds and then tap the switch again to turn Wi-Fi back on.

Try to play YouTube videos on your iPhone again and see if you can now do so. If your iPhone still couldn’t play YouTube videos, try to forget your Wi-Fi network or use a different Wi-Fi network available.

Alternatively, you may try resetting network settings on your iPhone 7. Doing so will erase and reset all your Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and VPN settings on your iPhone. That being said, be sure to take note of all your Wi-Fi passwords before you proceed with the following steps:

Tap Settings from the Home screen.

  1. Tap General.
  2. Tap Reset.
  3. Select Reset Network Settings.
  4. If prompted, enter your passcode.
  5. Confirm action if necessary.

Once the reset is complete, your iPhone will reboot.

Other Options for you to consider

  • Play YouTube videos at a later time. If you are prompted with YouTube error message saying that “Playing error tap to retry,” it may be due to downtime errors or the YouTube server is currently down. Try playing the video at a later time or play other YouTube videos from other YouTube channels. Doing so will help you isolate the problem.
  • Download YouTube videos to iPhone. Instead of using YouTube app to play YouTube videos on your iPhone, you can also download your preferred videos and then play straight on your iPhone. Doing so will let you play these videos offline. Just be sure you have enough space left on your iPhone to allocate these files. If necessary, you can move or back up all your watched videos from your iPhone to your computer to free up some space.
  • Try YouTube Videos converter. Sometimes, you may find some trouble playing or loading some YouTube videos on your iPhone due to incompatible file formats. This is where Video converter software plays its role.

There are wide range of HD video converters/YouTube downloaders you can use to download and convert YouTube videos to your iPhone 7 with ease. Here’s how it works:

  1. Download and install the Video Converter you prefer to use on your computer (Windows or Mac).
  2. Import the YouTube video URL. To do so, open the Video Converter then click the YouTube URL button.
  3. Search a video on YouTube.
  4. Copy and paste the link to the address bar of the pop-up screen.
  5. Select or specify the output version. MP4 files (.mp4 extensions) is recommended because it’s compatible with your iPhone.
  6. Click OK then follow the onscreen instructions to Download the YouTube video.

Once the download is finished, you can sync the downloaded video to your iPhone 7 using iTunes. By then you should be able to play the downloaded YouTube videos on your iPhone with no more playing errors.

If none of these is able to fix the problem and that you still couldn’t play YouTube videos on your iPhone 7, update your iPhone to the latest version of iOS. If your iPhone is already updated and the problem persists, then the last option for you to consider is a master reset. This should be deemed the last resort as it will wipe or erase everything on your iPhone system, and then restore it to factory defaults. If you don’t prefer that way, you may seek more help from your carrier or Apple Support. They may still have some other options for you to try on.

Connect with us

If you need more help with the use of certain functions and features of the new Apple iPhone 7 smartphone, feel free to visit our Tutorial Page. There you can find a list of how-to contents, step-by-step tutorials, as well as answers to FAQs regarding iPhone 7. If you have other concerns or encountered some troubles while using the phone, you can reach us through this form. Just be sure to tell us more details of the problem or device issue(s) you may have and we will be more than happy to assist you further.

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