When you set up a passcode to secure your iPhone and you enter the wrong passcode, you will get the “disabled” message.
If you enter the wrong passcode less than 5 times then there is no problem.
However, once you get it wrong 6 times or more your iPhone will be disabled.
The length of time it is disabled for increases for each additional wrong guess.
Eventually, if you make too many wrong attempts it will lock your iPhone completely until you can prove you are the owner.
The consequences of wrong guesses are as follows:
6 incorrect goes:
Your iPhone is disabled for 1 minute.
7 incorrect goes:
Your iPhone is disabled for 5 minutes.
8 incorrect goes:
Your iPhone is disabled for 15 minutes.
9 incorrect goes:
Your iPhone is disabled for 60 minutes.
10 incorrect goes:
You get the message “iPhone is disabled. Connect to iTunes” or your iPhone is completely erased if Erase Data is turned on in Settings > Touch ID & Passcode (or Settings > Passcode for iPhones without Touch ID).
Don’t panic – you can unlock an iPhone if you forgot your passcode and had 10 attempts.
When you say your iPad or iPhone is locked – what do you mean?
- Passcode locked
You have forgotten your passcode (the 4 or 6 digit code) and you want to reset it so you can use your device again. And hopefully keep all your data too. This is the issue the article below addresses.
- iCloud locked
You have a used Apple Watch, iPad, or iPhone but when you try to set it up it asks for the previous owner’s details. Read this article to fix this common problem: iCloud lock – how to unlock or bypass it.
- SIM locked
You are not allowed to use the SIM card from another network in your device. When you do, you get an error message and you can’t make or receive phone calls. This is an iPhone lock issue and you need to know how to unlock your iPhone.
How to fix this error
The fix you need to unblock your iPhone passcode depends on your circumstances.
- How to unlock your iPhone passcode if you have previously synced your iPhone to iTunes
- How to unlock your iPhone passcode if you have never synced your iPhone to iTunes
- How to unlock your iPhone passcode if you don’t have access to a computer
1. Synchronise your iPhone to your computer – you can do this even if you iPhone is locked. This creates a backup of everything on your phone. Obviously this works best if you have access to the computer your regularly sync your iPhone with.
The video below explains how to sync an iPhone if you are unsure.
2. When you connect your iPhone to the computer you may get this error message: “iTunes could not connect to the iPhone because it is locked with a passcode. You must enter your passcode on the iPhone before it can be used with iTunes.”
While your iPhone is still connected to your computer reboot your iPhone by holding down the power and home buttons at the same time. As soon as the Apple logo appears, let go of the power button but keep the home button depressed until you see a “Connect to iTunes” message appear on the iPhone screen.
3. On your computer, you will see a message appear in iTunes that a phone in recovery mode has been detected. You will be prompted to choose whether you want to restore your iPhone to factory settings, or restore it from a backup – if you want to put all of your personal information, contacts, messages, etc. back on to your phone, be sure to choose to restore it from the backup you performed in step 1.
The video below shows how the restore process works if you are unsure.
4. Your passcode will be erased and then all of your data will be restored from your backup. Once this process completes, the passcode will have been removed from your iPhone, and you should now be able to access it without any problems.
Considering upgrading to the new iPhone 6s or 6s Plus?
**The following text contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on these links.
Before you splurge on such an expensive device, you might want to seriously consider upgrading your phone to the iPhone 6, instead. The iPhone 6 has many of the same awesome features offered by the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. Yet, it’s significantly cheaper — especially if you buy it through Gazelle Certified.
It’s also important to consider that Gazelle Certified devices go through a 30+-point inspection process to ensure their quality and functionality. Plus, Gazelle Certified devices come with a 30-day return policy so you can test-drive the iPhone 6 to see if you like it. Lastly, you can get around those pesky carrier contracts because Gazelle Certified means no contracts. You can simply get a great phone at a great price without strings attached.
It’s totally cool to upgrade, but upgrade smart so you don’t spend a mint on a phone that may not live up to the hype.
Did you find this iPhone fix helpful?
If you found this fix helpful please take a moment to tweet, like, or share this article by using the buttons at the top of this page. I’d really appreciate it. 🙂
Also, if you are feeling extra generous after having your issue solved please leave some encouraging feedback in the comments section at the bottom of the page. I love getting feedback from visitors. It encourages me to find further solutions to those awkward little iPhone, iPad, MacBook, and Mac problems that we all suffer from.
Thanks for taking the time to read my website and I hope to help you again soon!
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- How to Unlock iPhone 6 (Plus) & iPhone 6S (Plus) - January 24, 2018
- iPhone Unlock Guide 2018 (Use any SIM / Carrier / Network) - February 15, 2017