What to do if your Apple iPhone shows “This accessory may not be supported” error

One of the error messages that you might encounter when charging your Apple iPhone is the one that states, “This accessory may not be supported.” As the message implies, your device is telling you that something’s not right and so it stops charging. If you’re seeing the same warning prompt when trying to charge your iPhone, then this post will help explain to you the reason why this happens and how to correct it. Read on to learn what to do if your iPhone says that “This accessory may not be supported.”

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What causes this warning prompt to show up on your Apple iPhone?

There are many possible reasons as to why your Apple iPhone prompts this warning when charging. Basing on the message itself, it says that the accessory may not be supported and therefore it’s couldn’t charge. The accessory that’s referred to is apparently the charger in use. Perhaps you are using a non-Apple charger or the charging cable you are using is not the one that came with your iPhone and therefore not compatible with your iPhone. Another possible reason is that something on the charging port or Lightning port of your iPhone may be barring the contact between the phone and the charger. As a result, there is no firm or secure connection between the phone and the charger. The same thing can happen if the charging port or Lightning port on the iPhone is completely damaged or broken. In some instances, random software glitches can also prompt the phone to show this warning message when charging.

Having said that, you will need to scrutinize both the software and hardware aspects of your device. To give you some inputs, I’ve mapped out some applicable workarounds that you can try to eliminate software-related factors that trigger the error message to show up on your iPhone. Keep reading for more information.

Before troubleshooting, verify and ensure that the charging cable you are using is made compatible with Apple’s design standards. If you’re not sure, try using a different charger (if possible, original Lightning cable or MFi-certified charging cable) to see which of them works. If you are using the original charging cable while getting this error, then that’s when you can try switching to other MFi-certified charging cables.

First solution: Soft reset/reboot your Apple iPhone.

When your iPhone system is acting up or glitching, different symptoms could transpire and that would include the error being tackled in this post. This is usually the cause if the charging system is affected. To clear out minor system errors like this, performing a soft reset or restarting the phone will likely solve the problem. This however can only be done if your iPhone still has sufficient battery life to power up.

If you’re using an iPhone X or later model, follow these steps to reboot or soft reset your iPhone:

  1. Press and hold the Side button and either Volume button until the Power off slider appears.
  2. Drag the slider to power off your iPhone completely.
  3. Then after 30 seconds, press the Side button again to turn your iPhone back on.

If you’re using an iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or earlier model, refer to these steps to reboot or soft reset the device:

  1. Press and hold the Top or Side button until the Power off slider appears.
  2. Drag the slider to power off the phone completely.
  3. After about 30 seconds, press and hold the Top or Side button again to turn the phone back on.

Allow your device to finish booting up and once it’s ready, try connecting the charger again and see if the error appears. If it doesn’t, then it was definitely just a random glitches that you’ve just fixed it.

Second solution: Update your Apple iPhone software (if possible).

If the first method failed to solve the problem and the error continues to show up, then you can troubleshoot further. The next possible solution you can try if your iPhone still has ample of battery life is an iOS update installation. Software updates also embed some dedicated fix patches that will help get rid of existing bugs including those that have ruined the phone’s charging functions. That said, check for any available iOS update to download and install on your device. Aside from sufficient battery life, memory space and stable Internet connection are also needed to update your iPhone wirelessly. Just follow these steps to get started:

  1. From your Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down and tap Software Update.

If a new iOS update is available, back up all important files from your iPhone storage and then tap Download and Install whenever you’re all set to update your device.

Third solution: Reset all settings on your Apple iPhone (if possible).

Some errors are triggered by incorrect settings. Thus if you started seeing the error after customizing your iPhone settings are after installing new updates, then your next option to try would be an all settings reset. This will erase all customized settings as well as auto-update overrides that were implemented on your device. Any associated error shall also be corrected. Simply follow these steps whenever you’re all set to start resetting your iPhone settings:

  1. Then from the Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Scroll down to and tap on Reset.
  4. Choose the option to Reset all settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode when asked to continue.
  6. Confirm that you want to reset all settings on your iPhone.

After the reset, your phone should reboot automatically and then loads up the default values and options. To use necessary features like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, you’ll have to enable them first individually.

Fourth solution: Factory reset your iPhone (if possible).

To rule out complex system errors that might have ruined the phone’s charging system, you can try a factory reset. This however, should only be considered among the last options as it will wipe everything from your device. This means that all your saved apps and data on the iPhone will be deleted. If your iPhone has at least 50 percent battery life, then you can go for a factory reset. Just be sure to back up all your important files to iCloud or iTunes beforehand. Once things are set, follow these steps to factory reset your iPhone through settings:

  1. From your Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down to and tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Erase all content and settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode when asked to proceed.
  6. And finally, tap the option to confirm that you want to erase your iPhone and restore its factory default settings.

When the reset is finished, you can use the start-up wizard to set up your Apple iPhone as new and use it again as you normally do.

Fifth solution: Restore your iPhone in iTunes (if possible).

Another possible solution to fatal system errors that caused recurring errors and symptoms is an iOS restore. You may consider this as the last resort if your iPhone still has ample of power or battery life to complete the entire iOS restore process. To get started, you will need to use a Windows or Mac computer that has the latest version of iTunes app installed. Connect your iPhone to the computer using the original USB cable or Lightning cable. Then refer to any of these steps to put your iPhone in recovery mode:

  • On an iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or later model, press and hold the Side button and either Volume buttons until the Power Off slider appears. Drag the slider to power off your device. While your phone is turned off, connect it to the computer via USB cable while holding the Side button. Keep holding the Side button until the Recovery Mode screen appears.
  • On an iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, press and hold the Side button until the Power off slider appears. Then drag the slider to power off your phone. While it’s turned off, connect it to the computer via USB cable while holding the Volume Down button. Keep holding down the Volume Down button until the Recovery Mode screen appears.
  • On an iPhone 6s or earlier models, press and hold the Side/Top button until the Power off slider appears. Then drag the slider to power of the phone. Connect your phone to the computer via USB cable while holding the Home button. When the Recovery Mode screen appears, you can release the button.

Shortly after releasing the last button, iTunes will prompt you to either Restore or Update your device. Select the option to Restore so that iTunes will instigate downloading of your phone’s software. Then follow the rest of the onscreen instructions to restore your iPhone from the most recent iOS backup. Allow your device to finish restoring and then reboots. As soon as it boots up, retry plugging its charging cable and see if the error message is still showing up or not anymore.

Other options

Performing the above solutions would usually suffice if the error is tied to some software glitches. But if none of them works, then that’s when you should consider other options including the following:

  • Charge your iPhone through a computer. To rule out the possibility the error is due to a broken power source, try connecting or charging your iPhone to a computer’s USB port. If the error doesn’t occur when charging through a computer, then that denotes that the problem is with the power source you previously used and neither the phone nor the charger.
  • Service/iPhone repair. If you’re still getting the same warning message that says, “This accessory may not be supported” after exhausting all prior methods, then you’re most likely dealing with a hardware issue. It’s possible that your iPhone’s Lightning port or charging port is broken or clogged with some dust or dirt. In this case, your next option would be to take a trip to the nearest Apple service center and ask help from an authorized technician to fix your device. Don’t forget to bring the charging accessory or charger you are using so that it can also be scrutinized. It’s possible that the charger or charging accessory is damaged and therefore needs a new replacement. If you’re iPhone is still covered by Apple warranty, then you better contact your carrier first to avail for warranty either for service or new unit replacement, if necessary.

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