8 Easy Fixes if You Can’t Delete Apps on iPhone

There can be numerous reasons you might want to delete an app from your iPhone. Whether you no longer need it or have found a better alternative, removing an app from your iPhone is a pretty straightforward process. But what if your iPhone won’t let you uninstall an app?

Top Ways to Fix Unable to Delete Apps on iPhone

Whether it’s the case of apps not jiggling or being restricted, such issues should not keep you from removing apps from your iPhone. This post will guide you through some effective ways to overcome the issue. So, without wasting any more time, let’s get right to it.

Why Can’t I Delete Apps on My iPhone

One of the primary reasons why your iPhone may not allow you to delete apps is if you have previously set up any restrictions. Additionally, if the app you’re attempting to delete is currently downloading or updating, you won’t be able to delete it.Delete Apps on iPhone

Further, if you are using an iPhone provided by your school or company, they may have set up restrictions that prevent you from removing apps required for work or academic purposes. In that case, you must contact the IT administrator at your school or company to request permission to remove apps.

What Apps You Can’t Delete on iPhone

Apple restricts you from removing certain first-party apps from your iPhone as they are critical to the functioning of the device. Here is a list of built-in apps that you cannot delete from your iPhone:

  • App Store
  • Camera
  • Messages
  • Phone
  • Photos
  • Safari
  • Settings

Although you cannot delete the above-listed apps from your iPhone, you can choose to hide them from your home screen.  

What to Do if You’re Unable to Delete Apps on iPhone

Here are some quick and easy fixes you can try when your iPhone won’t let you uninstall apps.

1. Restart Your iPhone

This is a classic troubleshooting tip that almost always works. If it’s a technical glitch preventing your iPhone from deleting apps, restarting it should take care of it.

If you’re using an iPhone X or later, press and hold the Sleep/Wake button and the Volume Up or Volume Down button simultaneously. Then, use the slider to power off your iPhone. On older iPhones, press and hold the Sleep/Wake button until the slider appears and use it to shut down your iPhone.

Power Off iPhone

Wait for your iPhone to shut down completely and then press and hold the Sleep/Wake button to turn it back on.

2. Check Restrictions for Deleting Apps

Your iPhone lets you set up various content restrictions so that your notorious child (or anyone else for that matter) cannot make changes against your will. If you’ve modified content restrictions on your iPhone in the past, you might have accidentally disallowed your iPhone from deleting apps. Here’s how you can change that.

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your iPhone and navigate to Screen Time.

Screen Time on iPhone

Step 2: Go to ‘Content & Privacy Restrictions’ and tap on ‘iTunes & App Store Purchases’. If you’re using a screen time passcode, enter your code to proceed.

Content and Privacy Restrictions on iPhone iTunes and App Store Purchases on iPhone

Step 3: Lastly, under ‘Store Purchases & Re-Downloads’, tap on Deleting Apps and select Allow from the following menu.

Deleting Apps on iPhone Allow Deleting Apps on iPhone

After this, check if you can delete apps now. 

3. Wait for the App Download to Complete

If the app you’re trying to delete is in the process of installing or updating, you might see a grayed-out app icon that says Waiting. 

To uninstall the waiting app, you can either wait for the app to finish downloading or cancel the download process by long-pressing the app icon and selecting Cancel Download from the menu that appears.

Cancel App Download on iPhone

4. Delete Apps From Settings

If you are still having issues deleting apps from the Home Screen, try using the Settings app on your iPhone to achieve the same.

Step 1: Open the Settings app, tap on General, and then iPhone Storage.

General Settings on iPhone Check iPhone Storage

Step 2: Scroll all the way down to locate and tap on the app you wish to remove.

App List on iPhone

Step 3: Tap the Delete App option to remove the app.

Delete App on iPhone

5. Uninstall the App via the App Store

If the above solutions don’t work, you can try removing the app using the App Store. Here’s how.

Step 1: Open the App Store on your iPhone and tap on the profile icon in the top right corner to visit the Accounts page.

App Store on iPhone

Step 2: Scroll down to locate the app you wish to remove. Swipe left on the app to reveal the Delete option and tap on it. Then, select Delete to confirm.

Delete App on iPhone via App Store Delete App or Game on iPhone via App Store

6. Sign Out of Apple ID and Sign Back In

Authentication issues with your Apple ID can also prevent you from removing apps from your iPhone. A quick way to fix this is to sign out of your Apple ID and sign back in. Here are the steps for the same.

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your iPhone and tap your name at the top.

Settings Menu iPhone

Step 2: Scroll to the bottom of the page and tap on Sign Out. Then, tap on Sign Out in the top right corner.

Sign Out of Apple ID on iPhone Sign Out of Apple ID

Once you’re logged out, sign back in with your Apple ID credentials and check if you can delete apps from your iPhone.

7. Install iOS Updates

Apple regularly releases software updates for your iPhone to add new features and fix known bugs. If the issue in question is only occurring due to a bug within iOS, installing newer updates should help.

To check for iOS updates, open the Settings app and tap on General. Tap on Software Update and allow your iPhone to check for newer updates.

General Settings on iPhone Software Update on iPhone

Download and install pending iOS updates and check if the issue is still there.

8. Reset All Settings

If you’re here, it’s safe to assume that the above fixes haven’t worked. In that case, your best option is to reset all settings on your iPhone. Here’s how to do it.

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your iPhone and tap on General.

General Settings on iPhone

Step 2: Scroll down to the bottom of the page and select ‘Transfer or Reset iPhone’.

Transfer or Reset iPhone

Step 3: Tap on Reset and select Reset All Settings from the menu that appears.

Reset iPhone Reset All Settings on iPhone

Follow the on-screen prompts to complete the process. After that, you should be able to delete apps from your iPhone without issues.

FAQs on Unable to Delete Apps on iPhone

1. Can I free up storage space on my iPhone without deleting apps?

Yes. If you do not wish to delete your favorite apps and games, you can consider transferring your media files to a cloud storage service like iCloud, Google Drive, or OneDrive to free up storage on your iPhone.

2. How to offload unused apps on iPhone?

To offload an app on your iPhone, navigate to Settings > General > iPhone Storage. Select the app you want to offload and select Offload App from the following menu.

3. How to turn off parental controls on iPhone?

To turn off parental controls on your iPhone, head to Settings > Screen Time > Content & Privacy Restrictions. Then, toggle the switch next to Content & Privacy Restrictions.

4. Can I delete an app that is not visible on my iPhone home screen?

If you have hidden an app on your iPhone, you can still delete it from the App Library, App Store, or the Settings app.

Remove the Unwanted

Apps can get stubborn sometimes, and you might have difficulty removing them. But more often than not, it’s the case of the app being restricted. If not, you can always remove the app from the Settings app or the App Store. Let us know which one of the above solutions did the trick for you in the comments below.

Last updated on 04 May, 2023

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