If you would like to know how to unlock iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus – even if you have forgotten or don’t know the passcode – this guide shows you every possible method available.
This article will explain the following unlocking topics:
- Free passcode reset methods.
- How to keep all your data after a passcode reset.
- What to do if you don’t have a computer.
- Unlocking tools.
- Using recovery mode.
- The Apple passcode reset procedure.
- Using Touch ID.
After its release in 2016, it was noted that the iPhone 7 range could have its screen locked using Touch ID or a passcode. Facial scanning had not been developed by Apple in 2016 so Face ID was not included on the iPhone 7.
Due to this difference in screen-locking, we developed this article for the following iPhone models:
Table of Contents
About the iPhone 7 passcode
Let’s start with some background details on iPhone 7 and its passcode.
The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus had iOS 10 pre-installed at launch and caused controversy by removing the headphone jack. Like the iPhone 6 models that came before it, it could be locked using Touch ID, or a passcode. This model does not include Face ID.
When you set up your iPhone 7 for the first time you will be asked to create a 4 or 6-digit passcode. This is in addition to Touch ID which allows you to unlock your phone by using your fingerprint.
If Touch ID fails, the passcode is used as a backup unlock method. Touch ID can go wrong, making it vital that you remember your passcode.
If you get the passcode wrong your device will be disabled for a period of time. If you continue to enter the wrong passcode, your iPhone will be permanently locked.
For more information, see how many passcode guesses before my iPhone is locked.
If your iPhone 7 is locked permanently, or you can’t remember the passcode then Apple says you must reset your phone to unlock it. A reset erases all your data so it’s best to have a backup.
However, there are some ways to avoid losing all your data – even without a restore – described later in this guide.
How to unlock iPhone 7 and 7 Plus if you’ve forgotten your passcode
Method 1: If you don’t have a backup or restore
The official Apple passcode reset technique used if you forget your passcode will wipe the contents of your iPhone 7. To get the data back, you recover the erased contents from a backup.
But what if you don’t have a backup?
There are a couple of solutions you can try – one free and one paid – that will remove the passcode and recover the missing data.
There is a free unlock method that is worth trying on all iPhone 7 models.
It is a bit fiddly to do, but if you want a free way to unlock your passcode and keep your data – even without a restore – then give it a go.
- This technique uses a software tool called IPSW to hack your iPhone 7.
- You download IPSW to a PC (not a Mac) and use it to hack the passcode without erasing your data.
For step-by-step instructions, see Forgot your iPhone 7 passcode? Unlock it without a backup or watch the video below.
There is also a few paid software tool you can try to unlock the screen.
All these tools run on a computer, so you will need a PC or Mac for these to work.
|#1 LockWiper||★★★★★||Removes locks such as passcode, Face ID, Apple ID, MDM lock, & screen time lock.|
|#2 D-Back iPhone Data Recovery||★★★★★||Recovers erased data from an iOS device, iTunes, or iCloud – including photos, messages, and more…|
|★★★★||Recovers 35 deleted file types from iOS devices, iTunes, or iCloud backups.|
The passcode unlocking process using these tools is as follows:
- Download and install the data recovery tool of your choice. There are free trial versions available – so you can try them out before you buy them.
- Before you wipe your device, test the data recovery program on your iPhone X to see if it will get back deleted files. If so, move on to the next step. If not, try the other tool.
- Download and install the passcode removal tool.
- Use the passcode removal tool to unlock the iPhone 7 or 7 Plus screen. The phone’s data will be wiped.
- Recover your data from the wiped phone using the data recovery tool you successfully tested in step 2.
For more detailed instructions, see iPhone unlocking process without restore.
Method 2: If you don’t have a computer
There are 3 ways to unlock an iPhone 7 passcode if you don’t have a computer:
- Ask for help from a friend, family member, or colleague. Borrow their smartphone, tablet, or computer to go online using a web browser and log in to your iCloud account and erase the passcode from there. For more information on accessing your iCloud account, see How to log in to iCloud.
- Download the Find My app onto another Apple device you own, such as an iPad. You can use the app to remotely erase your iPhone 12 and remove the passcode.
- Go into your nearest Apple Store or Apple reseller and ask them to help you perform the passcode reset using one of their computers.
For more information, see How to unlock iPhone passcode without using a computer.
Method 3: For free using Find My and iCloud
If you have access to another computer, smartphone, or tablet you can use them to unlock the passcode via the iCloud website.
To do so, do the following:
- Go to iCloud.com.
- If you have Two Factor Authentication turned on, you will be prompted for your authentication code.
- Once signed in, click Find iPhone.
- All the Apple devices you own will be located.
- Once your devices have been located, they will appear on a map.
- At the top of the screen, select All Devices and select your iPhone 7 from the list.
- Next, click Erase iPhone to remove the passcode. This process will also remove all the data from your iOS device.
- On the dialog box that pops open, confirm you want to erase the device.
- The passcode and all the data will be removed from your iPhone.
- Once erased, set up your device and restore your iPhone data.
It is a good idea to check when the iPhone’s last backup was done – to make sure it contains all your data before erasing your device.
Method 4: For free using recovery mode
To use recovery mode, you will need:
- A PC with Windows 8, or newer and iTunes installed, or a Mac.
- Your passcode locked iPhone 7
- A USB cable to connect the phone to the computer.
To use recovery mode do the following:
- Ensure your computer is not connected to your iPhone.
- Press and hold the side power button until the power-off message appears.
- Drag the slider to power off your phone.
- Connect your iPhone to your computer using the cable while holding the volume down button.
- Keep holding the volume down button until you put the iPhone into recovery mode.
- You can now release the volume down button.
- Locate your iPhone in the Finder or in iTunes on the computer.
- When you see the option to Restore or Update, choose Restore. Your computer downloads software for your iPhone 7 and begins the restore process. If the download takes more than 15 minutes and your device exits the recovery mode screen, let the download finish, then turn off your iPhone and start again.
- Wait for the process to finish.
- Once done, disconnect your iPhone from the computer, then set up your iPhone.
For more information, see Set up and use recovery mode.
Method 5: Using Touch ID
If you have Touch ID configured on your iPhone 7, do the following:
- Press the Touch ID sensor on the home button to unlock the screen. Make sure you use the correct finger. The lock icon at the top of the lock screen animates from closed to open to indicate that your device is unlocked.
- Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to use the device.
To lock the Phone 7 again:
- Press the side button, or
- don’t touch the screen for a minute or two, your iPhone 7 locks automatically.
If you don’t have Touch ID enabled, find out how to Set up Touch ID on iPhone.
Method 6: Using Apple Watch
You can use a paired Apple Watch to unlock your iPhone 7 by doing the following:
- On your iPhone, go to Settings
- Tap Face ID & Passcode.
- Scroll down, then below Unlock with Apple Watch turn on Apple Watch.
To unlock your iPhone 7, your Apple Watch must:
- Have a passcode.
- Be unlocked and on your wrist.
- Be close to your iPhone.
Getting rid of the passcode on other iPhone models
If you want to remove the passcode on a different iPhone model see:
- Unlock iPhone 15 after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 14 after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 13 after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 12 after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 11 after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock the iPhone SE after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone XR after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone XS and XS Max after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone X after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 8 after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 6 / 6 Plus after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 6s / 6s Plus after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 5, 5s, or 5c after forgetting the passcode.
- Unlock iPhone 4 after forgetting the passcode.
Other iPhone unlocking guides
Beyond the passcode lock, Apple also uses Activation Lock and the carrier lock to restrict and secure their products.
Find out more about these iPhone unlocking methods: