Unable to install iOS 17 update? Here’s how you can fix it!

Unable to install iOS 17 update

Every year, Apple releases new iterations of the iOS software to keep your iPhone secure, up-to-date and feature-packed. Keeping up with the trend, iOS 17 introduced a plethora of exciting new features for iPhone, but some users have reported failing to install it. If you are unable to install iOS 17 update, here are a few tested solutions that will surely help you out.

  1. Essentials to ensure iOS update downloads and installs
  2. Force quit Settings app
  3. Restart your iPhone
  4. Learn how to fix frozen iPhone update
  5. Reset Network Settings
  6. Use computer to download and install iPhone update

1. Essentials to ensure iOS update downloads and installs

There are a few things you need to ensure before going ahead with the installation of iOS 17 software.

  • Ensure your iPhone is compatible: The first step is to ensure your device and iOS compatibility. If you have an iPhone XR or later (including iPhone SE 2 gen.), you can download and install the iOS 17.
  • Make sure you have over 20% battery: You must have over 20% battery to install the iOS 17 update. If the charge is less, please plug your iPhone into charging. While charging or once the battery is above 20%, you can download and install the iOS update effortlessly.
  • Connect to a stable Wi-Fi: It is vital to ensure that you have stable Wi-Fi. Also, ensure you have turned off the VPN on your iPhone or the router level. If the Wi-Fi at a coffee shop is not letting you download the update, consider using your home or office Wi-Fi.

    Note: Some minor iOS updates can now be downloaded using mobile data. According to my testing over the last few months, major updates still require Wi-Fi.
  • Ensure you have sufficient free space: To download and install iOS updates, ensure you have free space. You will see a message on the update screen if you do not have ample free space. Check out our guide on how to free iPhone space to resolve it.
  • Wait for some time or try again later: When a major iOS update is released, millions of people around the world rush to download it. This can put a strain on Apple’s servers, causing the update process to stall. If you’re seeing a “Waiting to update…” message, the best thing to do is wait a few hours. You can also check Apple’s System Status page to see if their servers are experiencing any issues.

2. Force quit Settings app

If you’re unable to install iOS 17 update on your iPhone, force quit the Settings app.

  1. On iPhone with Face ID, swipe up from the bottom of the screen and hold.
    • On iPhone with a Home button, quickly double-press it.
  2. Drag the Settings app card all the way up to force quit.
  3. After a few seconds, open the Settings app → GeneralSoftware Update and see if you can install the new iOS update.
Force Quit Apps on an iPhone

3. Restart your iPhone

This is another important fix for iOS updates not installing. To restart your iPhone, turn it off, and after one minute, turn it back on.

4. Learn how to fix frozen iPhone update

Is your iPhone update frozen? Is it stuck on the same update-requested screen for a long time? In this situation, please see this post where I show you multiple solutions to fix this issue.

5. Reset Network Settings

This is an almost sure-shot solution to fix failed software update issues. A while back, my iPhone update also got stuck. I switched to three different Wi-Fi networks. Still, the update was not downloading. Finally, I reset the Network Settings, and everything was as good as possible.

Note: This will not delete personal data like apps, photos, videos, songs, etc. However, all Network Settings related to Wi-Fi, Cellular, and such will be erased.

  1. Open iPhone Settings and tap General.
  2. Tap Transfer or Reset iPhoneReset.
  3. Select Reset Network Settings.
  4. Once this completes, try downloading and installing the update again. It will work.

    Reset Network settings on iPhone and iPad

In rare cases, if this does not help, go ahead and reset all settings. This, too, won’t delete personal data. But all settings you have ever changed or added, like notifications, keyboard, Wi-Fi, location, VPN, etc., will reset to the default state.

6. Use computer to download and install iPhone update

Finally, if nothing seems to work now, you can update your iPhone using a Mac or Windows PC.

I hope the methods listed here helped. These were the solutions to fix the ‘cannot download and install iOS update’ issue. If you need more assistance, don’t hesitate to contact me via the comments section below.

If you think your device needs physical inspection, please contact Apple Support.

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  1. Please share the exact issue: whether you can’t see the update option or installation is getting stuck somewhere. We’ll be able to help you out better when we have that info.

  2. I was able to download IOS 15.2 but could not install. I keep getting an error message “Unable to Install”, and a prompt to “Retry”. I retried several time with same results.

  3. Try restarting your device and retry. If this doesn’t work, check if there’s enough space on your device, clear some space, and that might help.

    Also, what is the exact message under the Unable to Install popup? If it says software update requires a network connection, try switching the network (WiFi or hotspot).

  4. Thank you very much for your time! As I can see of course some people are very rude. But just know for every rude person there is a person that appreciates what you do😊 Thank you

  5. We spent several days trying to upgrade from IOS 14 to 16 and your suggestion of resetting the network settings worked.

    Thank you so much!

    1. If your iPhone is stuck on the iOS 17 update screen and you cannot access Settings, you can try resolving this issue by force restarting your device.

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