How to erase your iOS device and then set it up as a new device or restore it from backups

Learn how to erase all of the data on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch and set it up as a new device or restore it from iCloud or iTunes backups.

If you're having an issue with your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, follow these troubleshooting steps to:

If you're going to give away or sell your iOS device, learn what to do before selling or giving away your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

Back up your data

  1. Check for iOS software updates. Install them if available.
  2. Take a few minutes to transfer your content from your device to your computer to ensure that all of your critical data is safe.
  3. Back up your device before you erase it.

Learn more about how to copy your backup to another folder, disk, or location for safekeeping.

Erase your device

Erasing all content and settings will delete all of the data from your device, including songs, videos, contacts, photos, calendar information, and anything else. All device settings are restored to their factory condition.

To remove all settings and information from your device, tap Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings.


If you can't erase your device, restore the device using iTunes.

Set up your device as a new device

After your device is erased, you should see the following screen:

Follow the steps to complete the setup assistant. When prompted, select "Set Up as New iPhone." Then tap Next.

Skip the Apple ID sign-in, in case the original issue was related to any of your content on iCloud.


After setting up as new, you will need to enter your Visual Voicemail password for iPhone (on carriers that support Visual Voicemail). If you've forgotten your password, contact your carrier to help you reset it.

After erasing and setting up as a new device, your device is now in a factory configuration. Re-try what you were trying when you first found the issue to determine if erasing and setting up as a new device resolved the issue. Content on the device might have caused the unexpected behavior.

  • If the issue persists, you might want to contact Apple Support.
  • If the issue is resolved, sync one type of content at a time back to your device. For example, if you had an issue playing music, add songs from iTunes and confirm that they will play. If your contacts weren't loading successfully, add the contacts back. After each sync, test to see if the issue has returned.

Restore your device

After you erase your device, you can restore a previous backup using iCloud or iTunes. Learn how to back up and restore your iOS device with iCloud or iTunes.

If Find My iPhone is enabled, tap Settings > iCloud to turn it off before you  restore your device.

Some Apple services (such as two-step verification for your Apple ID) require Find My iPhone to be turned on. After making sure your issue is resolved, sign in to your iCloud account and reenable Find My iPhone.

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