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Find My iPhone not working on your iPhone? Here’s what to do

find my friends not working iphone scaled

Find My is a useful service that allows people to share their location with friends and find a missing device. However, Find My still has many limitations, and it might not work properly when you need it.

In this article, we’re going to tell you what to do if you can’t share your location through Find My and also why your missing iPhone may not be visible inside the app. If Find My is not working on your iPhone, check the instructions we provided below.

Why can’t Find My iPhone locate a missing iPhone?

Find My is useful if you’ve lost your iPhone. It shows you the location of your lost device, so you can go and pick it up. At least that’s how it should work. In reality, Find My is very limited and requires a whole set of rules to be fulfilled to show the location of your missing iPhone. Here are a few scenarios in which Find My won’t be able to locate your device.

1. Make sure Find My is enabled

The first thing we’re going to check is if Find My is enabled. This is mandatory if you want your iPhone to be discoverable through Find My. If this option isn’t enabled, there’s not much you can do in case you lose your phone. Here’s how to enable Find My on your iPhone:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap [your name] > Find My.
  3. Tap Find My iPhone.find my not working ios
  4. Make sure the Find My iPhone option is enabled.

2. iPhone has no internet connection

If your missing device is not connected to the internet, you won’t be able to find it through Find My. It could be outside the range of Wi-Fi or cellular networks. Or the person who has it might’ve disabled both Wi-Fi and cellular data, making it impossible for you to track the current location of your iPhone.

If your lost iPhone has no internet connection, you’ll still be able to see its last known location for 24 hours. So, you’ll have at least something to work with.

3. The missing iPhone has no power

If the device you’re trying to find is turned off, Find My won’t be able to locate it. As I already mentioned, your iPhone needs to be able to communicate with cellular or Wi-Fi networks and send GPS signals. So if the person who has your iPhone now has turned it off, or the battery has died, Find My won’t be of much help.

The last known location of your iPhone (the last time it was powered on and connected to the internet) will still be visible.

Fix: Can’t share your location with Find My

We mentioned a few scenarios in which you can’t find your lost iPhone. But people also use Find My to share their locations with each other. So, here are a few solutions that should help, in case you can’t share your location with friends through Find My.

1. Make sure you’re sharing location

The first prerequisite for your friends to see your location, but also for you to see theirs is for you to enable location sharing. To share your location, open Find My and enable Share My Location. On top of that, you can also enable location sharing in Settings. Here’s how to do that:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap [your name] > Find My.find my not working iphone
  3. Make sure the Share My Location option is enabled.

Also, your friends also need to have location sharing enabled to appear in your Find My app.

2. Turn on Location Services

Find My needs Location Services to share your location. Here’s how to make sure Location Services are enabled on your iPhone:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Head over to Privacy > Location Services.
  3. First, enable Location Services.
  4. Now, scroll down and tap Find My.
  5. Choose While using the App under Allow Location Access.

3. Check Date & Time

And finally, if the date and time on your iPhone are not correct, Find My may not be able to share your location without interferences. Here’s how to properly set date and time on your iPhone:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Head over to General > Date & Time.find my not sharing location iphone
  3. Choose Set Automatically.

That’s about it. I hope this article at least helped you resolve the problem with sharing your location with friends. And if you’ve lost your iPhone, and it doesn’t appear in Find My, I can only wish you luck. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, feel free to write them down in the comments below.

Picture of Ivan Jenic

Ivan Jenic

Editor-in-chief at Mobile Internist. @ivan_jenic I founded Mobile Internist to help people understand technology better. And maybe solve some annoying problems. That's about it, cheers!
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