How to fix an Apple iPhone 7 that cannot update to iOS 11 wirelessly, OTA update not working [Troubleshooting Guide]

Need help in getting the latest iOS 11 update installed on your iPhone 7 wirelessly? If so then this post will help you.

The latest iOS 11 version has recently been made available to selected Apple devices including the iPhone 7. Aside from bringing new and enhanced features and services, the new update also contains bug fixes as the company’s response to existing issues raised by some iDevice owners. But not all of those who installed the new iOS are able to get positive results based on overall feedback.

In fact, various complaints have been raised online regarding the latest iOS 11 update which according to some was chaotic. In response to the post update issues transpiring after the major update rollout of iOS 11, Apple released official fixes in forms of minor updates. The follow-up updates to iOS 11 are available over the air (OTA) for those who want to update their device wirelessly and likewise through iTunes. But then again, some iPhone 7 users are having trouble getting the OTA or wireless update installed on their respective devices. Why does this problem occur and what should be done as remedy? Read on to learn more.

Before going any further though, if you have other concerns with your new iPhone, make sure you drop by our iPhone 7 troubleshooting page for we have already started supporting the device. Moreover, if you need further assistance, you can always contact us by completing our iPhone issues questionnaire and providing us with sufficient information about the problem.

Possible reasons as to why your iPhone 7 won’t update wirelessly

Among the common factors that can trigger wireless update to not work as intended on your device would include insufficient storage space, network problems resulting the update server to become unavailable, update file is too huge and the update file hasn’t been completed or broken.

Update files can take up big space from your iPhone storage thus you have to allot enough or a little more space for the update file to be installed on your device. Major software updates are usually massive thus come with bigger file size. This means the need for more space from your iPhone’s internal storage.

If necessary, try to free up some space by removing unnecessary apps and contents, especially those with bigger file size as they used up more space of your iPhone’s internal storage.

In the case where the network is to blame, you have to note that wireless updates require a stable and active network connection to be downloaded and installed on the device. With that said, you need to deal with any network issues first so you can have the update installed on your iPhone with no hassles. Needless to say, network problems can cause the update server to become unavailable thus your iPhone won’t be able to access or communicate with the server.

A similar issue can occur if the update installation did not finish. There is a higher chance the update file gets broken or corrupted in this case. As a result, software-related issues begin to sprout on the device either in forms of apps malfunction or the device itself gets rogue. Network problems, particularly intermittent or unstable connection are among the things that can interrupt update download and installation.

Generally, all these factors could result to problems associated with the iPhone 7 software.

Potential solutions and recommended workarounds for you to try

Considering the fact that this iPhone problem is related to the software, you can try to fix it as you’ll have a higher chance of getting resolution without a need for service on the phone. Highlighted below are some options which would serve as potential solutions to the problem with wireless (OTA) update that won’t get installed or not working on the iPhone 7.

The following solutions are purely based on the possible causes. You may opt to try some other workarounds if necessary. Be sure to test your device or attempt to download the update after performing each method to determine whether it’s already working or not.

First solution: Reboot your wireless router/modem and your iPhone 7.

A reboot on the network equipment and the iPhone itself will rectify any software glitches affecting the iPhone and modem’s normal operation. A reboot on the iPhone 7 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 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.

How to reboot an iPhone 7 that is unresponsive?

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

  • To force restart an iPhone 7, 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.

To rule out the possibility of having insufficient space on your iPhone 7 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, 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.

Apple servers can become available when congested or when the network service request volume is significantly high. If the download takes a long time or if your iPhone 7 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 to the computer using the supplied USB cable or Lightning cable.
  2. Open iTunes on the computer.
  3. Select your iPhone 7 on the list of available devices 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 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, click the Download and Update button.
  8. If prompted, enter the correct passcode to continue.
  9. 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, 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.
  6. Download the latest iOS update for your iPhone 7 wirelessly or if necessary, use iTunes to update your device instead.

Should you wish to proceed with the latter, 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?

When things go wrong, iTunes usually prompts you with an alert message or error prompts and codes. If you encounter any error message while updating your iPhone 7 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 need to contact your device carrier or Apple Support for further assistance and suggestions if your iPhone 7 is still unable to download and install iOS update either wirelessly (OTA) or with iTunes. They might be able to offer you other options with the help of their tools.

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.