How to fix an iPhone 7 Plus that is stuck on black screen with notification lights after updating iOS [Troubleshooting Guide]

Display issues in iOS devices such as frozen or stuck display may be due to either software or hardware flaws. But in the case where the problem instigated after installing an update to iOS, it’s most likely attributed to a software error. Tackled in this post is a pertinent issue on the iPhone 7 Plus, in which the device is stuck on black screen with notification lights after installing the latest iOS update. There’s a higher chance that an update bug has caused it. If ever you’re among those who ended up having the same issue after updating to iOS 11.3.1 or iOS 11.4, then this context might be able to help you out. Read on to find out what options you can try on to troubleshoot and resolve the underlying cause.

Before anything else, if you have other issues with your device, try to browse through our troubleshooting page as we’ve already addressed several issues with this device. Odds are that we’ve already published a post that tackles similar problems. Try finding issues that have similar symptoms with what you currently have and feel free to use the solutions we’ve suggested. If they don’t work for you or if you still need our help, then fill up our questionnaire and hit submit to contact us.

First solution: Force restart your iPhone 7 Plus.

It’s been a common dilemma for device owners to have a frozen iPhone after a new software installation. This is inevitable because every device is configured in different ways based on the user’s preferences. There might be certain apps settings or options that are configured in such a way that’s conflicting with the new platform. As a result, system errors occur and the device starts to act up. Restarting the device can help rectify such conflicts, clears glitches and minor system errors. But in this case, you won’t be able to carry out the usual reboot since the screen is stuck. As alternative, you can force restart your iPhone instead. Here’s how it’s done:

  • Press and hold both the Power and Volume Down buttons for about 10 to 20 seconds. Release both buttons when the Apple logo appears.

A force restart is a simulated battery removal procedure that works the same as the usual reboot/soft reset does without affecting any data and personal information stored on the iPhone’s internal memory. It effective clears errant background apps that might have caused the system to crash and your iPhone to get stuck.


Second solution: Charge then force restart.

Your device can be stuck on black screen if it completely ran out of power. This is possible especially if the update file is too big that it takes longer to finish installing. Your iPhone battery must have been drained and therefore needs to recharge. So here’s what you can do next:

  1. Connect your iPhone to its charge and then wait until it charges.
  2. While your iPhone is charging, do a force restart by pressing and holding the Power and Volume Down buttons simultaneously for a few seconds then release both buttons when you see the Apple logo.

If your iPhone successfully reboots, allow it to finish charging and then try using it again to see how it performs.

Third solution: Restore your iPhone 7 Plus via Recovery Mode with iTunes.

A recovery mode restore can be the key solution if the problem is on the system that has crashed. You may opt to restore to a previous iOS backup given that the new software version has caused your device to act up and get stuck. Otherwise, restore your iPhone 7 Plus to its factory state then set it up as new. Restoring your iPhone in recovery mode will result to data loss since all data will be deleted in the process. On the positive note, complex bugs are likewise obliterated. Should you wish to proceed, you may refer to these steps:

  1. Connect your iPhone 7 Plus to a computer (Windows PC or Mac) using the supplied Lightning cable to USB cable.
  2. Wait until the computer recognizes your iPhone.
  3. Then force restart your iPhone by pressing and holding the Volume Down and Power buttons simultaneously. Do not release the buttons when the Apple logo appears. Continue to hold down both buttons until you see the Connect to iTunes screen. Once you see this screen, let go of both buttons.
  4. Launch iTunes on your computer and you should see a message saying that “There is a problem with the iPhone that requires it to be updated or restore.”
  5. Follow the rest of the onscreen instructions to Restore your iPhone 7 Plus in iTunes.

Most complex system errors are typically resolved by a recovery mode restore but if that’s not what you end up with from doing so, you’ve got to try something else.

Fourth solution: Restore your iPhone 7 Plus in DFU Mode with iTunes.

Device Firmware Update or DFU mode is usually deemed as the last-ditch iOS recovery option to deal with persistent software issues on the iPhone. This can be considered an option if the normal recovery mode failed to fix the problem and your iPhone 7 Plus is still stuck on black screen. DFU mode allows your iPhone to interact with iTunes without loading the operating system (iOS). DFU mode restore can help get your device back into working order in case the software has become totally corrupted. Should you wish to proceed, follow these steps to perform a DFU mode restore on your iPhone 7 Plus through iTunes:

  1. Close any programs/applications on your computer to prevent them from causing conflicts that may halt the system restore process.
  2. Open iTunes on your computer.
  3. Connect your iPhone to the computer using the supplied Lightning cable/USB cable. Your iPhone must be turned off.
  4. Press and hold the Power/Side button on your iPhone for at least 3 seconds.
  5. Then press and hold the Volume Down button while continuing to hold the Power button. Hold both buttons for 10 seconds.
  6. If you see the Apple logo, it means you’ve held the buttons for too long and so you need to start from the top. Otherwise, continue to the next step.
  7. Release the Power button while continuing to hold the Volume Down button for about 5 seconds.

If you see the Plug into iTunes screen, it means you’ve held the button for too long and therefore, start from the top.

If the screen stays black, it means you have successfully entered DFU mode. At this point, you should see an iTunes alert saying that it has detected your iPhone. Follow the rest of the given instructions to proceed with a DFU mode restore in iTunes.

Service options

Your iPhone likely needs service if it remains stuck on black screen after exhausting all prior workarounds and potential solutions. It might have acquired some sort of physical or liquid damage and it just happened that the symptoms occur after installing an iOS update. In that case, you can take your device to a nearby Apple Genius bar and have it examined by an authorized technician.

Or you can contact your device carrier or Apple Support for other options. Let them know of what exactly has occurred or how your iPhone 7 Plus ended up being stuck on black screen with notification lights. If you see any error codes or messages, take note of and relay them to Apple Support. Error messages or codes may serve as clue on what went wrong and what must be done to rectify the flaws.

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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