Gmail not working on iPhone or iPad? 14 Real fixes!

Gmail not working on iPhone? How to fix it

When Gmail stops working on your iPhone, you might not be able to login to an app or service, change other websites’ passwords, miss bank alerts, and more. In short, things can get chaotic. Thankfully, this issue can be fixed successfully. In this article, I’ll explain why Gmail is not working on your iPhone or iPad and show you how to fix the issue.

Why is Gmail not working on my iPhone?

Before going for the fixes, it is vital to understand why Gmail is not working on your iPhone or iPad. And the primary reason for this is security. If you are in a different region (say on a trip to a different city or country), Google might prevent Gmail from working to safeguard you, as it might think someone else is trying to access your emails.

In contrast, sometimes the error may lie on your iPhone or in the mail app. There have even been situations when mobile data was off for the mail app, which prevented new emails!

Worry not. I have covered fixes for all these issues below. The first five solutions are related to checking things from Google’s end. In the rest, we make sure to correct things on the iPhone’s end.

  1. Check Google status dashboard
  2. View device activity
  3. Check the Gmail website for alerts
  4. Perform CAPTCHA reset
  5. Check IMAP is Enabled
  6. Ensure you have internet connectivity and VPN is off
  7. Force close the mail app on iPhone
  8. Restart your iPhone
  9. Disable iPhone restrictions
  10. Update the mail app on iPhone
  11. Update your iPhone
  12. Uninstall and reinstall the mail app on iPhone
  13. Remove your Gmail account and set it up again
  14. Reset all iPhone Settings

1. Check Google status dashboard

Visit the official Google Workspace Status Dashboard and make sure Gmail is not facing any service disruption or service outage.

2. View device activity

  1. Visit using your iPhone (or computer). Tap Go to Google Account and sign in if needed.

    Tap Go to Google Account and sign in
  2. Ensure you are in the Security tab.
  3. From here, review security events.
  4. Click on an activity that corresponds to your device name, location, and when you tried to sign in.
  5. From the next screen, tap Yes, it was me.
  6. After this, most likely, the email may start loading correctly.

    Review security events and tap Yes it was me

3. Check the Gmail website for alerts

When Google prevents you from signing in, it will send an email to the same email (and/or the recovery email). If you can open this email on any other device or iPhone browser, please do that. Next, inside this email, tap ‘review your devices now’ or something similar. Follow the prompts to let Google know that it was you who was trying to sign in.

4. Perform CAPTCHA reset

  1. Visit using an iPhone browser (or computer).
  2. Sign in using your Google account.
  3. Click Continue.
  4. Now, try signing in to Gmail on your iPhone, and it should work without issues.

    Perform CAPTCHA reset

5. Check IMAP is Enabled

This could be one of the important reasons why Gmail may not be working on your iPhone or iPad. Here’s how to check this.

  1. Visit in Safari, Chrome, or other iPhone browser and sign in with your Gmail account.
  2. If you see a screen asking you to use the Gmail app, tap I am not interested.
  3. Tap the hamburger icon (three lines) from the top left.
  4. Scroll to the bottom and tap Desktop.

    Go to Desktop version of Gmail on iPhone
  5. Choose I’d like to use HTML Gmail.
  6. Tap Settings from the top.
  7. Tap Forwarding and POP/IMAP.
  8. Enable IMAP and tap Save Changes.
  9. Now, try signing in to Gmail in the iOS email app of your choice, and it should work flawlessly.

    Go to HTML version of Gmail tap Settings Forwarding and POP IMAP and Enable IMAP

Now let us move to the next part of the solutions that ensure everything is okay from your iPhone’s end.

You can access Gmail via the in-built iOS Mail app, the official Gmail app, one of the various third-party email apps, or the web. Follow the fix accordingly, wherever applicable.

6. Ensure you have internet connectivity and VPN is off

Open an iPhone app like Safari and try to visit a website. If you can, that means you have a working internet connection. In case the internet isn’t working please check the following guides.

Next, in case you are using a VPN (especially a free one), please turn it off. Several services are inaccessible via VPN.

Tip: If you are on mobile data, it is vital to ensure that the mail app is allowed to use it. For this, open the Settings app and tap Cellular. Now, scroll down and make sure that the toggle for your email app (like Mail, Gmail, or what you use) is enabled.

7. Force close the mail app

At times when an app misbehaves, force closing and reopening it helps. To force quit the mail app, swipe up from the bottom of your iPhone screen and hold. If your iPhone has a front Home button, quickly double press it. Now, drag the email app card all the way up to force close it. After a few seconds, relaunch the email app and let it refresh.

8. Restart your iPhone

Restarting your device is a basic yet essential fix for dozens of little problems. If Gmail is not connecting successfully, turn off your iPhone and, after a minute, turn it back on.

9. Disable iPhone restrictions

Did you (on purpose or mistakenly) restrict the Mail app? This could yet be another reason why Gmail is not working on your iPhone or iPad. Follow the quick steps to ensure this isn’t the case.

  1. Open the Settings app and tap Screen Time. (If it says Turn on Screen Time, that means no restrictions are set. In this case, you can skip all the steps below and jump to the next solution.)
  2. Tap Content & Privacy Restrictions.
  3. Tap Allowed Apps.
  4. Make sure the Mail app’s toggle is green.

    Go to Content and Privacy Restrictions Allowed Apps and make sure Mail is enabled

10. Update the mail app on iPhone

App updates fix bugs and improve the overall compatibility. To fix the Gmail not working issue, make sure you update the app. To do this, long-press the App Store icon and choose Updates. Pull down this screen to refresh the page. Finally, tap UPDATE next to Gmail (or the email app you are using).

11. Update your iPhone

You can update third-party email apps (steps above). But what about the inbuilt iOS Mail app. Additionally, when the apps and the operating system are updated, things run smoother. Thus, open the Settings app and tap General. Next, tap Software Update to get the latest version of iOS on your iPhone.

12. Uninstall and reinstall the mail app on iPhone

To delete an app, long-press on its icon from the Home screen or App Library. Next, tap Remove AppDelete AppDelete.

Note: If you are on iOS 12 or later, you can even delete several inbuilt apps, including the Mail app.
After deleting the email app, open App Store and redownload it.

13. Remove your Gmail account and set it up again

In case the above solutions bring no luck, it is time to get rid of the Google account from your iPhone and add it again. Here is how.

  1. Open the Settings app and tap Mail.
  2. Tap Accounts.
  3. Tap Gmail.

    In Settings app tap Mail Accounts and Gmail
  4. Next, tap Delete AccountDelete from My iPhone.
  5. Restart your iPhone (important).
  6. Now, add your Google account again to use Gmail on the device.

    Tap Delete Account and confirm to remove Gmail account from iPhone

14. Reset all iPhone Settings

This will not delete personal data like apps, music, photos, videos, etc. However, all settings will be deleted and restored to default. This includes Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, VPN, and more.

  1. Open the Settings app and tap General.
  2. Tap Reset.
  3. Tap Reset All Settings and proceed.
  4. After this process completes, set up Gmail, and it should work fine.

    Reset All Settings on iPhone

I hope these solutions helped you with Gmail issues on your iOS device. If you have additional queries, kindly put them in the comments section. Additionally, take a moment to check out some other related posts to elevate your experience.

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