How to fix Bluetooth pairing that doesn’t work on Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max, cannot pair with a Bluetooth accessory

The iPhone 11 Pro Max supports the latest version of Bluetooth technology that is, Bluetooth version 5.0. This offers a lot of significant improvements especially towards low-energy operation modes among IoT (Internet of Things) devices. With Bluetooth 5, the maximum connectivity range  or proximity between devices is longer about four times the range of Bluetooth 4.2 LE (Low Energy) which is 800 feet. However, these advanced features may still not be able to guarantee a totally flawless Bluetooth pairing experience. Having said that, there will always be some instances for random Bluetooth problems to occur on your iphone 11 Pro Max. And you’re probably reading this post because you’re already dealing with one of the common issues and you cannot pair your iphone 11 Pro Max with a Bluetooth accessory. If that is so, then this post might be able to help you out. Read further to learn what to do if Bluetooth pairing doesn’t work on your new Apple iphone 11 Pro Max handset.

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Troubleshooting a problem on Bluetooth pairing that doesn’t work on a new Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max

As mentioned earlier, distance or proximity between the Bluetooth devices that you’re trying to pair matters. Hence, to rule out distance issues, place your iphone 11 Pro Max next to the Bluetooth device you’re attempting to pair with. Also verify and ensure that your devices are compatible. You can do some research before troubleshooting if you aren’t sure if your Bluetooth accessory is indeed compatible with your iphone 11 Pro Max. If all these requisites are met but Bluetooth pairing still doesn’t work on your new iPhone, continue to rule out common software-related factors using these basic solutions.


First solution: Disable and re-enable Bluetooth on your iPhone 11 Pro Max.

Minor Bluetooth issues particularly not connecting or not pairing are usually remedied by turning Bluetooth feature on the iPhone off for a few seconds and then back on again. It’s like giving a quick pause and refreshes the phone’s Bluetooth functions. If you haven’t already, disable Bluetooth on your iphone 11 Pro Max then re-enable with these steps:

  1. From the Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Tap Bluetooth.
  3. Tap or slide the Bluetooth switch to the OFF position.
  4. After about 30 seconds, toggle the switch to turn Bluetooth back ON again.
  5. Wait for a list of available Bluetooth devices to show up.
  6. Select the Bluetooth device that you want to pair with your iPhone.
  7. If prompted, enter the correct passcode. Usually the defaults set by manufacturers of Bluetooth devices are 0000 and 1234. Or just enter the correct passcode if you already have it.

Also make sure that the device you’re pairing with your iPhone is set to Pairing mode. Otherwise, your iPhone won’t be able to recognize it. You can refer to the user guide that came with your Bluetooth accessory to find out how to place it in pairing mode.

An alternative way to disable and re-enable Bluetooth connections on your iPhone is through the Airplane Mode toggle. Turning Airplane mode on disables the phone’s wireless radios along with other wireless features like Bluetooth and turning Airplane Mode off re-enables them. This trick effectively eliminates random flaws affecting various wireless functions of the phone and this could likewise be the key to rectifying Bluetooth pairing errors on your iphone 11 Pro Max at the moment. 

  • To access and manage this feature, simply head over to Settings-> Airplane Mode menu then toggle the switch to turn Airplane Mode on and off.

After turning Airplane Mode off, you may have to re-enable Bluetooth so you can start pairing with your Bluetooth device afresh.

ALSO READ: How to fix iPhone XS Max iOS 13 cellular data that’s not working


Second solution: Reboot your iPhone and Bluetooth device.

Various types of software issues can be resolved by a simple restart or soft reset on the phone. Hence if you haven’t already, consider a soft reset as your next potential solution to try on. This will clear out junk files that are stored among other Bluetooth caches including those that have caused conflicts and ruined its normal pairing sequence. Here’s how to soft reset your iphone 11 Pro Max:

  1. Simultaneously press and hold the Side and Volume Up buttons for a few seconds.
  2. Release both buttons when the Slide to Power off bar appears.
  3. Swipe or drag the bar to turn your device off.
  4. After about 30 seconds, press and hold the Side button and then release when the Apple logo appears.

Your iPhone will now enter the boot sequence. While waiting for your iPhone to finish rebooting, go to your Bluetooth device then find the power switch to turn it off for a few seconds and then turn back on again.

Once both devices are rebooted, retry pairing them and see if the pairing is successful already.


Third solution: Forget then re-add your Bluetooth device.

One of the possible reasons as to why Bluetooth pairing doesn’t and can’t work is because the connection is corrupted. This is usually the case if you’ve already connected to that same Bluetooth device with your iphone 11 Pro Max and then suddenly you can’t get it to pair again. If this is the case, forgetting the problematic Bluetooth connection would be necessary. So here’s what you should do next:

  1. Go to your iPhone Settings-> Bluetooth menu and make sure that the Bluetooth switch is enabled so you can view the list of available Bluetooth devices within range.
  2. Select the Bluetooth device that you wish to forget.
  3. Tap the information “i” icon next to the name of the device.
  4. Tap Forget This Device.
  5. If prompted, tap Forget Device to confirm action.

The selected Bluetooth device will then be removed from the list. Repeat the same steps to forget other unused Bluetooth peripherals saved on your iPhone. Doing so will prevent any of these devices from causing conflict with your current Bluetooth connection.

Reboot your iPhone after forgetting all saved Bluetooth devices. As soon as it boots up completely, head back to Settings-> Bluetooth menu, then enable the Bluetooth switch. Wait for the list of available devices to populate then select the Bluetooth device that you want to pair with your iphone 11 Pro Max.

ALSO READ: How to fix an iPhone iOS 13 that won’t connect to App Store


Fourth solution: Reset network settings to fix Bluetooth pairing that doesn’t work on your Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max.

Network connectivity issues including network errors on your phone’s current network setting can also be underlying cause. To clear this out, resetting the network settings on your iphone 11 Pro Max can help. Doing so will erase all your current network configurations including any errors and then restores the original network values and options. Your Bluetooth connections will also be deleted along with other network information and Wi-Fi networks, hence you’ll need to set up Bluetooth like the first time you did after the reset. If you wish to proceed, just follow these steps:

  1. From your Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down to and tap on Reset.
  4. Select Reset Network Settings from the given options.
  5. Enter your device passcode if prompted to continue.
  6. Then tap Reset Network Settings again to confirm that you want to reset network settings on your phone.

Your iPhone should restart when the reset is finished and then loads up the default network values and options. By then you can start enabling necessary features and set up a new Bluetooth connection.


Fifth solution: Update to iOS 13.1.1 or later version, if available.

A number of iphone 11 owners who are having trouble using Bluetooth on their respective devices were able to find ultimate solution from the recent iOS version. Thus if you haven’t already, check and install the latest firmware update available for your iPhone. Apple has by far released two follow-up iOS updates following the major release and these are the iOS 13.1.3 and iOS 13.1.1, 13.1.2 and 13.1.3. If your iPhone stable internet access and ample battery life, follow these steps to check for and install the latest iOS update available:

  1. Tap Settings from your Home screen to get started.
  2. Scroll to and tap General.
  3. Tap Software Update.

An update notification will show up if a new update is available. Follow the onscreen commands to download and install the update on your iPhone.

After updating, reboot your iPhone to apply the recent system changes and to properly implement the integrated patches to fix existing bugs.


Last resort: Reset your iPhone and Bluetooth device to factory defaults.

If none of the previous methods help and Bluetooth pairing still doesn’t work on your iphone 11 Pro Max, resorting to a factory reset can be considered among the last options. This will erase everything from your iPhone including downloaded apps and files, saved contacts, customized settings, and other data stored on the internal memory. To recover all important files, be sure to back them up before you start erasing your device. Once you’ve secured the backup, continue with these steps to factory reset your iphone 11 Pro Max through settings:

  1. From the Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down and tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Erase all content and settings. This will erase all customized options and new settings overrides from the recent update, including all saved information on the phone storage.
  5. Enter your device passcode if prompted to continue.
  6. Tap the option to Erase iPhone twice to confirm that you want to erase and restore factory default settings on your device.

On your Bluetooth device, find the reset button then long press on it to reset the device. This button is different from the power button and the label vary between devices. For further instructions on how to reset your Bluetooth device, refer to the user manual that came with it.

After resetting and restoring both devices to factory defaults, go to your iPhone and set up your Bluetooth connections as new. Be sure to place your Bluetooth device within range, if not, next to your iPhone and that it’s set to pairing mode.

ALSO READ: How to fix iOS 13 Bluetooth pairing error on iPhone X, cannot pair to Bluetooth accessories


What to do if Bluetooth pairing still doesn’t work on your Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max?

Perhaps the problem is with the Bluetooth accessory that you’re attempting to pair with or connect to your iphone 11 Pro Max. To figure this out, try pairing your iPhone with any other compatible Bluetooth enabled device you’ve got. If Bluetooth pairing is successful with other devices, then it’s an isolated problem with the previous Bluetooth accessory and not on the iPhone. In that case, using alternative device that serve the same purpose can be deemed as an ultimate solution. Note that there are some devices that aren’t compatible with the new iOS platform and thus these devices just couldn’t get to work with your new iphone 11 Pro Max. 

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