How to fix an Apple iPhone 7 Plus that is unable to update to iOS 11 wirelessly or over the air? [Troubleshooting Guide]

Apple has recently rolled out the latest iOS version for select iPhone and iPad devices. The new update brings a lot of new and enhanced features for your iOS device. However, not all users got the same positive results from the major iOS update as some ended up having troubles and bugs. In response to this concern, Apple rolled out a series of minor updates containing necessary bug fixes to deal with post-update issues. These updates are available for downloads over-the-air (OTA) or wirelessly and likewise via iTunes.

Many users however would prefer to get the update wirelessly over through iTunes as it’s supposedly faster than the latter. But the problem is that some iPhone 7 Plus owners are unable to get over-the-air (OTA) update. Know the reasons as to why you are unable to update wirelessly on your iPhone 7 Plus and find out what to do rectify the issue. This content might be able to give you some insights.

But before anything else, if you have other concerns with your iPhone 7 Plus, make sure you drop by our troubleshooting page for we have already addressed some of the most commonly reported issues with this new iPhone. If you need further assistance or if you can’t find what you’re looking for in that page, fill up our iPhone issues questionnaire and hit submit. Don’t worry, it’s a free consultation service so you don’t have to worry about anything. Just give us more information about the problem and we’ll do our best to help you fix it.

Why is your iPhone 7 Plus unable to update iOS wirelessly?

There are four possibilities as to why you are having trouble getting over-the-air updates installed on your iPhone including the following:

  • Insufficient storage space on your device. If you are fond of storing new contents or complex apps, then this can be a possible reason as to why you might be unable to update your iPhone wirelessly. You can free up some space by moving some contents from your iPhone to a computer or other backup media.
  • Update server is unavailable. Your device might be unable to reach the update server because it is currently not available or the server is busy. Requests are typically placed in queue in this case, which can take a long time. You can try to update again at a later time.
  • Update file is huge. Downloading may take longer if the update file is too complex. Make sure your device has enough space for the update and that it has strong and and stable Internet connection. And to prevent having interruptions due to power issues, connect your iPhone to a charger and let it charge while updating iOS.
  • Update did not finish or not completed. For some reasons, the update just could not be completed. Factors like network connectivity and software malfunctions are likely among the possible triggers. Make sure your network is active and stable.

Basically the possible triggers are on the software thus the problem is deemed among other software-related issues on the iPhone 7 Plus.

Possible solutions and suggested workarounds

Below are generic solutions you can try on to troubleshoot the problem based on the possible causes mentioned earlier. Consider performing any of these methods whenever you’re all set to begin with troubleshooting.

First solution: Reboot your iPhone and wireless router/modem.

Doing so will rectify any software glitches affecting the iPhone and modem’s normal operation. A reboot on the iPhone can fix minor software glitches. Meanwhile, rebooting the modem or wireless router can fix network problems triggered by random errors on the network equipment’s system structure. Here’s how it works:

  1. Turn off your modem/wireless router by pressing the Power button until the lights are off.
  2. Unplug it from the power source.
  3. Wait for at least 1 minute then plug it back in.
  4. Turn it back on by pressing the Power button.
  5. Wait until all the lights are stable.
  6. Reboot your iPhone 7 Plus the usual way (soft reset). Just turn it off for a few seconds and then turn it back on. Doing so will eliminate minor software glitches that might have affected the iPhone’s normal functions.

In the case where your iPhone becomes unresponsive or frozen while trying to update iOS, you can do a force restart instead.

  • To force restart an iPhone 7 Plus, press and hold the Sleep/Wake (Power) button and the Volume Down button simultaneously and then release both buttons when the Apple logo appears.

Try to update iOS wirelessly again and see if it’s already working. If not, try the next applicable solutions.

Second solution: Remove unnecessary contents from your iPhone 7 Plus.

To rule out the possibility of having insufficient space on your iPhone to download and install an update, try to free up some space. Normally, iOS will attempt to make some space in this case by removing only app data that it can download again. But you too can do something to make room for the update by removing unwanted contents from your device. Here’s how to remove contents in iOS 11:

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Tap iPhone Storage.
  4. If your iPhone is running in iOS 10, go to Settings-> General-> Storage & iCloud Usage-> then tap Manage Storage.

Go over through the contents details then remove all contents that are no longer useful. After freeing up space on your iPhone 7 Plus, try to get the latest iOS update again and see if it works this time.

Third solution: Use iTunes to download and install the iOS update on your iPhone 7 Plus.

If the download takes a long time or if your iPhone 7 Plus cannot reach the update server or cannot verify the update, you can try to improve download speed by stopping download of other contents or use a Wi-Fi network, if available. You need to have an Internet connection that is fast so downloading completes shortly.

If you are prompted with an error message saying that your device cannot reach the update server or cannot verify the update, try updating your iPhone again using the same network. If the error persists on your next attempt, use another network or update your iPhone through iTunes instead.

To update with iTunes, you need to secure a Windows PC or Mac computer that has the latest version of iTunes app installed. When you’re all set to begin, follow these steps:

  1. Connect your iPhone 7 Plus to the computer using the supplied USB cable or Lightning cable.
  2. Open iTunes on the computer.
  3. Select your iPhone 7 Plus in iTunes.
  4. Navigate to the Summary section then click the option to Check for Updates.
  5. You will get an update notification if an iOS update is available for your device.
  6. Before you proceed with an iOS update download, backup your iPhone 7 Plus with iTunes. To get this done, just click the option to Back Up Now and then follow the rest of the onscreen instructions to complete the iOS backup process.
  7. After creating a backup of your iPhone 7 Plus, click the Download and Update button.
  8. If prompted, enter the correct passcode to continue.

Wait until iTunes has finished installing the latest iOS update on your device.

If you still cannot install the latest iOS version for your iPhone 7 Plus, try removing the update and downloading it again on your device. Here’s how it works:

  1. Go to Settings-> General-> iPhone Storage.
  2. Locate the iOS update in the list of apps.
  3. Tap the iOS update.
  4. Tap the option to Delete Update.
  5. Go to Settings-> General-> Software Update.

Download the latest iOS update for your iPhone 7 Plus wirelessly. Alternatively, you can use iTunes to update your device. Please refer to the aforementioned steps on how to update iOS through iTunes.

What to do if you see an error message while trying to update iOS via iTunes?

If you encounter any error message while updating your iPhone 7 Plus with iTunes, take note of the message as it will give a hint on what went wrong or what needs to be done in order to correct the error and complete the process.

Seek more help

You may contact your device carrier or Apple Support for further assistance and suggestions if your iPhone 7 Plus is still unable to download and install iOS update even with iTunes. They might be able to offer you other options with the help of their tools.

Engage with us

If you have other issues with your Apple iPhone 7 Plus, we are always willing to help. Contact us through our iPhone issues questionnaire and provide us with all necessary information about your problem so we can find a solution to your issue.