How to Fix my iPhone Not Recognized by Computer

If your computer will not recognize your iPhone, you cannot perform any tasks from apps like iTunes or Finder on your iOS device. There are reasons why your machine is failing to detect your device and this guide offers methods to fix that. Read on to learn the available methods.

Author Avatar Joy Taylor Last Updated: May. 26, 2022

There are many occasions when you would want to connect your iPhone to your computer. Whether you want to make a full backup with iTunes, or you simply want to copy certain files from your device to your computer, you will need to connect your device to your computer over a USB cable. This connection works just fine most of the time. However, occasionally, you might find your PC not detecting iPhone.

Computer Not Recognizing iPhone

Computer Not Recognizing iPhone

Why won’t my computer recognize my iPhone? There are a variety of reasons for that. It may be that there is an issue with the USB connection. It may also be that you do not have the proper drivers installed on your computer. Luckily, you have multiple ways to fix it when your iPhone won’t connect to computer.

How do I get my computer to recognize my iPhone? The following guide describes some of the most simplest and advanced ways. At the end of the guide, you can fix the computer not recognizing iPhone issue and interact with your iPhone from your computer.

Further Reading: My iPhone is Disabled and Won’t Connect to iTunes, How to Unlock? >

Part 1. Basic Tips to Fix Computer Not Recognizing iPhone

If your computer doesn’t recognize iPhone because of some basic issues, the following tips will help you fix the problem on your device. Once the issue is fixed, your iPhone will show up on your computer when you connect iPhone to computer and you will be able to work with it from there.

Tip 1. Restart Computer and iPhone

The simplest way to fix it when your PC won’t recognize iPhone is to reboot both your computer and iPhone. Sometimes, minor glitches cause issues with your devices and you can fix these by turning off your machines and then turning them back on.

Rebooting your devices will not harm them in any way. Before you do that, though, make sure you have saved any unsaved work. If you reboot your iPhone or computer without saving your work, you will lose the work.

The following is how you go about rebooting your iPhone and computer to fix computer not recognizing iPhone.

Reboot an iPhone

For iPhone 8 or earlier: press and hold down the Power (Side/Top) button to turn off your device. Then, press and hold down the Power (Side/Top) button again to turn on your device.

Restart iPhone 8 or Earlier Models

Restart iPhone 8 or Earlier Models

For iPhone X and older: Press and hold Side button and Volume Up/Down button to turn off, then press and hold Side button to turn on.

Restart iPhone X or Later Models

Restart iPhone X or Later Models

Reboot a Computer

If you have a Windows PC, click on the Start Menu, select the power icon, and choose Restart.

Reboot a Windows PC

Reboot a Windows PC

If you have a Mac computer, click on the Apple logo at the top-left corner and choose Restart.

Reboot a Mac

Reboot a Mac

Connect your iPhone to your computer when your devices reboot.

Tip 2. Check if Your USB Cable Works

A valid reason for PC not recognizing iPhone is that the USB connection is not working. It may be that the USB cable that you use to connect your iPhone to your computer is damaged. If this is the case, you will need to get a new cable and use it to make the connection.

Also, some aftermarket USB cables are known to cause issues like the one you are facing. Therefore, you should avoid getting those cables and always insist on getting the Apple-certified cables for your devices.

Once you have replaced the cable, use the new cable to establish a connection and the issue that iPhone USB not recognized will be fixed.

Tip 3. Always Trust Your Computer

If you have ever connected your iPhone to your computer, you probably know that you need to trust your computer before you can exchange any files. You need to verify on your iPhone that you trust the connected machine and you do not have any objections with transferring files from and to this computer.

Your iPhone asks you to trust your computer when you connect it to the computer for the first time. If you are not sure what options you have set and whether your machine is trusted, you can re-trust your machine as follows.

Step 1. On your iPhone, launch the Settings app and tap on General.

Step 2. Select Reset on the following screen and tap Reset Location & Privacy. This will reset the settings for your trusted computers.

Reset iPhone’s Location and Privacy

Reset iPhone’s Location and Privacy

Step 3. Connect your iPhone to your computer and you will get a prompt on your iPhone. Tap on Trust in the prompt and you will find that computer not recognizing iPhone issue has been fixed.

Part 2. Advanced Methods to Fix Computer Not Recognizing iPhone

If the basic tips did not fix the computer not recognizing iPhone issue for you, you might want to look into some advanced ways to get rid of this problem. There are several methods for you to resolve the connection problem and get your computer to recognize your iPhone.

The following are those methods.

Method 1. Update iTunes to Help Computer Detecting

If you have been using a really old version of iTunes on your computer, that may be the main reason for your iPhone not recognized by PC or iTunes not recognizing iPhone. Old versions of any app including iTunes can cause many issues on your devices. Therefore, you should always keep your apps up to date no matter the device.

One of the ways to fix the computer not detecting iPhone issue is to update the iTunes app on your computer. This process should only take a few minutes and it can fix computer not recognizing iPhone easily. The following is how you do that.

Step 1. Open the Start Menu, search for Apple Software Update, and click on it. This will open the utility that helps you update apps like iTunes on your computer.

Step 2. Wait for the tool to check for available iTunes updates.

Step 3. If an update is available, select that in the list and then click on Install at the bottom.

Download iTunes Update on Windows

Download iTunes Update on Windows

The latest iTunes will be installed on your computer.

Method 2. Update Windows/Mac Operating System

In addition to keeping iTunes up to date on your computers, you need to update the version of your operating system as well. Whether you are a Windows or Mac user, it is important to keep your system up to date. This can help fix issues like Windows not recognizing iPhone and iPhone won’t connect to Mac.

Downloading and installing updates for both Windows and Mac machines are pretty easy. All you need to do is head into certain menus on your machines to get and install updates. The following shows how to update your system to avoid computer not recognizing iPhone.

Updating a Windows PC

Step 1. Open the Settings app from the Start Menu and click on Update & Security.

Step 2. Click on Check for updates on the right-hand side panel to check and install updates.

Update Windows Computer

Update Windows Computer

You might need to reboot your computer to apply the downloaded updates.

Updating a Mac

Step 1. Click on the Apple logo at the top-left corner and choose About This Mac.

Step 2. Select the Software Update button to find and install macOS updates.

Update Mac

Update Mac

Your Mac should now be up to date.

Method 3. Use iPhone Repair Tool to Fix System Issues

If you have tried the above two methods and still cannot solve the problem of computer not recognizing iPhone, then it is very likely that your iPhone system has some kind of issue. In this case, to troubleshoot the system, you need to resort to a professional iPhone repair tool, such as PhoneRescue for iOS. This is a powerful iOS system repair software. Even if your iPhone freezes or crashes due to system failure, this tool can bring it back to life within minutes. For PhoneRescue, it is trivial to fix iPhone not being recognized by computer. For more features of PhoneRescue, read below.

Free Download

Free Download

* 100% Clean & Safe

Free Download * 100% Clean & Safe

  • Zero technical requirements – The entire system repair process only requires you to click a few buttons. Even software novices don’t need to be afraid.
  • No data erasure – Different from the traditional way of repairing the system by factory reset, PhoneRescue can ensure that your data will not be erased while repairing the system. Let you fix system issues without any constraints.
  • Fixer for various system problems – Computer won’t recognize iPhone, iOS update failure, black screen, recovery mode loop… All these problems can be solved with PhoneRescue.
  • Not just system repair – PhoneRescue can also act as your iPhone data recovery assistant, helping you easily retrieve important data from your device, iTunes backup, and iCloud backup.

Download and install PhoneRescue now, and refer to the guide below to solve computer not recognizing iPhone!

Step 1. Start PhoneRescue on the computer and select the Repair iOS System mode in Device Rescuer. Connect your phone and computer with a USB cable.

Enter Repair iOS System in PhoneRescue for iOS

Enter Repair iOS System in PhoneRescue for iOS

Step 2. To ensure the integrity of your iPhone data, please select Advanced Mode.

Choose Advanced Mode

Choose Advanced Mode

Step 3. Follow the on-screen instructions to put your iPhone into recovery mode. Then click Download to download the corresponding firmware. Then PhoneRescue will start to repair the iOS system automatically.

Wait for the Repairing Process to be Finished

Wait for the Repairing Process to be Finished

Method 4. Use AnyFix to Detect iPhone System Problems

One of the many reasons why your computer cannot recognize your iPhone is that there is an issue with your iPhone’s software. If there have been any changes to the core files of your device, that can cause many issues on your phone.

One way to fix the system issues on your iPhone is to use a repair tool. While there are many other tools in the market, you are suggested to use AnyFix – iOS System Recovery tool as it fixes almost all types of issues on your iOS-based devices. It is basically an all-in-one solution to all your iPhone problems. It provides you three repair modes to fix 130+ iOS/iPadOS/tvOS problems. Besides, it allows you to solve 200+ iTunes errors. The following shows how you can use it to fix your iPhone and make it recognizable by your computer.

Step 1. Download and launch AnyFix on your computer. Plug in your iPhone to your computer and click on System Repair in the app.

Free Download

Free Download

* 100% Clean & Safe

Free Download * 100% Clean & Safe

Click on System Repair

Click on System Repair

Step 3. Hit Start Now when you are ready to start repairing your iPhone.

Choose iPhone Problems and Click on Start Now

Choose iPhone Problems and Click on Start Now

Step 4. Choose one of the repair modes on your screen and that mode will be used to fix your phone.

Choose Standard Repair

Choose Standard Repair

Step 5. Follow the on-screen instructions, wait for some time, and your iPhone will be fixed.

Your computer should now recognize your device without a single issue.

Method 5. Update Apple Driver

Your Windows computer uses driver software to recognize and work with your Apple devices. If you do not have the right drivers installed for your iPhone, you will find your iPhone not connecting to pc. You can fix that by updating your iPhone’s drivers on your machine.

The following shows how to do this.

Step 1. Launch the Device Manager from the Start Menu on your PC.

Step 2. Find your iPhone under Portable Devices, right-click on it, and choose Update driver.

Update the iPhone Drivers

Update the iPhone Drivers

Step 3. Select Search automatically for updated driver software to find and install the required drivers.

Search and Install the iPhone Drivers

Search and Install the iPhone Drivers

When the drivers are installed, your PC will recognize your iPhone.

The Bottom Line

If your computer will not recognize your iPhone despite connecting it the right way, there are issues with the elements that you are not aware of. The above guide tells you what those elements are and how you can fix computer not recognizing iPhone. But among those methods, the tried-and-true and most convenient method is to use PhoneRescue and AnyFix to fix the problem. Why not quickly download PhoneRescue to solve your troubles?

Free Download

Free Download

* 100% Clean & Safe

Free Download * 100% Clean & Safe

Author Avatar
Joy Taylor Twitter Share Facebook Share

Senior writer of the iMobie team as well as an Apple fan, love to help more users solve various types of iOS & Android-related issues.

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