Apple iPhone 6s stuck on waiting status, unable to download, install, update, apps and software [Troubleshooting Guide]

Smartphones are rapidly evolving. And due to the increasing number of smartphone users, demands for mobile apps are also augmenting. To ensure that every smartphone owner’s daily mobile needs are met, apps developers are constantly working to produce more new apps as often as they could. That being said, smartphone users would just go to the App Store, pick their app, download, and install as many apps as the iPhone can handle.


Considering the fact that not all smartphone owners are tech savvy, apps developers also made it sure that every app they offer are obtainable in the simplest and easiest way possible. But due to some unavoidable reasons, errors can sometimes occur when attempting to download, install, or update apps or software on the phone. Just like what some owners of the Apple iPhone 6s device, who have their iPhone stuck on the ‘waiting’ status and unable to proceed with apps download, installation, or update software. If by any chance, you are among these people who are troubled with this same problem on the same device, then I suggest reading this entire post so as to learn what may have possibly caused such problem to arise and what needs to be done in order to resolve the underlying cause.

But before we jump right into our troubleshooting, if you have other issues with your iPhone, make sure you drop by our troubleshooting page because we’ve already addressed a lot of issues reported by our readers. Find issues that are similar with yours and use the solutions we suggested. If they don’t work for you or if you need more help, fill up our iPhone problems questionnaire and give us more accurate information about your problem so we can give you the best solution.

Why is your iPhone 6s stuck on waiting status while performing apps download, installation, or software update?

Many factors can put your iPhone 6s into the same state. Based on previous reports, many instances of an iPhone that is stuck at waiting were tied to network problems. In the case where an iPhone got stuck on the waiting after installing a major software update, it turned out that the software update is causing it. The same thing can happen after installing corrupted files or apps that contain bugs to your device. Other factors that can put your device in the same state would include memory problems, as well as server overload.

Network problems such as intermittent or unstable connection, network congestion, network outages, or no connectivity appeared to be the most common trigger. Apparently, apps download and installation as well as software upgrades are processes that require strong and stable connection to the network in order to be completed. Needless to say, doing any of these processes will be most likely impossible with the presence of network problems. Say for instance, you cannot download any apps or update software if the network is currently unstable or intermittent. This is because your phone would need to access the server using your current network to carry out your download request. But since it could not establish a secure connection to the network, it re-attempts to connect and thereby remains on the waiting state for a longer period of time. Usually, you will also be prompted with an alert message telling you about the current network status should there be any on-going problem that may have hindered iPhone downloads or software update services. No worries though because once the network connection is back up and running smooth and stable, everything should be working fine as well.

Aside from network problem, memory issues like insufficient storage on the iPhone can also lead to the same instance where the device gets stuck at waiting while trying to download apps or install software update. Note that new apps and software updates denotes additional contents that your device has to allocate. If your iPhone has insufficient storage left, or the remaining storage space is almost over, it wouldn’t be able to add more new apps or contents as there will be no more room for them to occupy. For this reason, be sure to review the file size of the app or software update you are about to download and install, and then check the remaining storage space on your device to see if it would suffice. Once you’ve got everything checked and you found no problems on the remaining storage space then that is when you may proceed with your apps download.

If necessary, you can use iTunes to manage and free up some space on your iPhone to allocate additional apps or files you want to download. On iTunes, there is a Manage Storage option you can use to view apps details along with information on how much storage each of these applications used over the amount of storage capacity on your device.

Performance issues such as slow processing, lags, freezes, and apps crashes can also transpire if the iPhone has low or insufficient memory. Error codes and alert messages might as well show up while doing some tasks.

Server overload or congested server occurs when a high volume of users’ requests is present. This usually transpires when a major software update is available for download and many device owners are attempting to update their respective devices. When this happens, the server would be very busy responding to download requests and eventually become unavailable. Your request will likely be put in queue and shall be processed once all prior requests are completed and the server load lightens. Usually if this is the case, you will see an alert message telling you that the server is currently unavailable and that you should try again later. And so, you have to do as it says.

What to do when your iPhone 6s is stuck on waiting and unable to proceed with apps download or software update installation?

Since hardware issues have nothing to do with this, it denotes a possibility that the problem can be fixed on your end without a technician’s aid. Unless of course if the problem suddenly occurs following an incident of dropping or liquid exposure, then we could say it’s probably caused by a damaged to certain component on the iPhone.

Considering that there is no damage on the iPhone’s hardware components, you may go ahead and try any of the subsequent workarounds to resolve the underlying cause and get your iPhone back to work normally as it should.

Step 1. Perform a soft reset or hard reset on your iPhone

A soft reset is another term for restart or reboot. This method is used to deal with device issues that are software-related. It is also one of the simplest and most effective ways of clearing cache and temporary files thus freeing some space of your iPhone for additional contents and processes.

  • To perform a soft reset on your iPhone 6s, just press and hold the Power button until you see the red slider. Drag the slider towards the option to Power off the iPhone completely. After 30 seconds, press and hold the Power button again until the Apple logo appears on the screen. At this point, your iPhone should now reboot and all set for use.

If a soft reset is not able to fix the problem, and that you still have your iPhone 6s stuck at waiting, then try performing a hard reset instead. A hard reset is also known as force restart. It’s a recommended alternative procedure to forcibly reboot an unresponsive or frozen iPhone.

  • To perform a hard reset or force restart your iPhone 6s, press and hold the Power and Home buttons at the same time, for at least 10 seconds until the Apple logo appears. Release both keys at once when you see the Apple logo. Your iPhone should then reboot and hopefully fix the problem.

Both the soft reset and hard reset are deemed safe processes, which effectively deal with device problems caused by some software malfunctions or glitches. Performing a soft reset or hard reset is often recommended for sudden occurrences of software-related issues on your mobile phone.

Step 2. Check your network connection and make sure it is stable

As what I have explicated earlier, unstable or intermittent network connection is one of the major factors that can cause your iPhone to get stuck at waiting and unable to download or install apps or software updates.

Wireless networks (Wi-Fi) are more susceptible to intermittent connectivity issue than wired connections. If you are using Wi-Fi, verify and ensure that it is enabled, stable and strong. However if you are currently experiencing issues with your wireless network, then you may try to switch to Cellular Data instead. After switching between networks, reboot (soft reset) your iPhone, and the retry downloading or installing of apps or software update on your device. Please note though that you may incur extra charges for using Cellular Data on your iPhone 6s. For more details on how you get billed for using Cellular Data network services, you may contact your carrier.

Step 3. Make sure your iPhone has sufficient memory

Although the iPhone 6s is equipped with high storage capacity, it can eventually become full especially if you are fond of downloading third-party apps and multimedia contents to your device. You may not have perceived it but your iPhone’s internal storage is actually running out that is why it can no longer allocate additional contents or processes. Being stuck on the waiting status while attempting to download apps or firmware update is likely a symptom that indicates your iPhone is already low on memory.

  • To check your iPhone’s memory status, head over to Settings-> General-> Storage & iCloud Usage-> Manage Storage.

Note: Menu options may vary depending on the device model and carrier settings.

Tapping on Manage Storage will prompt you with a screen that contains details on the amount of memory space each app consumes.

If necessary, you can remove any unwanted apps and contents from your device, especially those that with bigger file size like multimedia files or complex programs.

Quitting apps that running in the background can also help free up some space of your iPhone’s internal storage. Your iPhone’s multitasking capability may no longer be at its best especially when its running of out memory space. In fact, some iPhone owners who experienced the same problem in which the iPhone is stuck at waiting and couldn’t download, install or delete an app have found it was somehow due to some running apps in the background. That being said, they were able to find remedy by closing or quitting all apps that are running in the background, rebooting the iPhone, and then retry downloading, installing, or deleting applications. For some reasons, it helped.

Step 4. Update or Restore your iPhone using iTunes

Using iTunes to update or restore iOS is another highly recommended solution, especially if your iPhone 6s is stuck at waiting while attempting to download software updates and couldn’t get past that screen for some reasons. Apple also recommends the same method to those iPhone owners who are plagued with the same problem following the most recent iOS 10 or iOS 10.2 update implementations. To proceed with this method, you will need to secure a computer (Windows or Mac) with iTunes. Also be sure to use the latest version of iTunes to avoid system incompatibility issues. Once you’ve got everything set, you may proceed with these steps:


  • Connect your iPhone 6s to your computer.
  • On your computer, open iTunes.
  • Hard reset or force your iPhone to restart by pressing and holding the Power and Home buttons simultaneously. Do not release both keys when the Apple logo appears.
  • When you see the Recovery Mode screen, that’s when you release both keys at the same time.


  • At this point, you should see an iTunes prompt asking if you want to proceed with Update or Restore. Tap Update to continue with iOS updating via iTunes.

Wait for iTunes to complete the installation of iOS update. Once it’s all done, you may proceed with the device setup. The setup process may take longer to finish depending on the size of the file iTunes is trying to install. Just wait until it’s done.

Step 5. Contact your carrier or Apple Support for further assistance

Now that you’ve tried every possible solution and workarounds recommended in this post but still end up having an iPhone 6s stuck on waiting and could not proceed with apps download or software update installation, your next option is to escalate your concern to Apple Support or your carrier for them to assist you further. Just let them know about what you’ve done so far when troubleshooting the problem on your end. That way you won’t have to go through the same procedures over again. Also, tell them exactly what has happened prior to the onset of the problem so they will have some clues on what to diagnose and therefore come up with an ultimate solution.

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