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Apple uses Touch ID as an authenticating method to protect data on devices. When you have recorded your fingerprint information on your iPhone/iPad, you need to hold your finger on the sensor to unlock devices. However, sometimes Touch ID is not working as we expect, especially when the sensor goes wrong to detect your fingerprints, or bugs occurred.

In this article, we will introduce the reasons leading to the Touch ID not working issue, and also present all workable ways to help solve iPhone/iPad Touch ID not working. Now, keep reading and uncover more details.

What is Touch ID?

Touch ID is a biometric authentication method used by Apple to verify the owner’s identity before accessing device and viewing data on it. When you have applied Touch ID to protect your iPhone/iPad, to unlock the device, you only need to place your finger (the one with fingerprint recorded in advance) on the sensor. If the biometric details are matched with the recorded ones, the screen will be unlocked and you can then start using your iPhone/iPad to do everything.

Why Is My Touch ID Not Working?

However, sometimes you may find that Touch ID is not working as you expect, which even leads to error notifications like Unable to Activate Touch ID on This iPhone. It would be a trouble. Because this can prevent you from unlocking your iPhone/iPad to access the device and use it normally. Generally, the Touch ID problem happens due to the following reasons. Knowing them first can help you fix the problem much easier:

Improper Operations: your finger is dirty or covered with lotion, water, etc.; the screen protector prevents the scanner from working to detect your fingerprints; you are not using the fingers with recorded fingerprints.

System Problems: iOS system errors occur, triggering notifications like Unable to Activate Touch ID on This iPhone.

Hardware Issues: The hardware may be damaged during the replacement of screen or battery, leading to the Touch ID not working issues.

Touch ID Is Not Working on iPhone/iPad

How to Fix Common Touch ID Problems on iPhone/iPad

Hence, it is easy to notice multiple reasons leading to the Touch ID not working problem. But don’t worry! There are various ways to work it out! In the following, we have collected 4 quick general methods to help you get out of iPad/iPhone Touch ID not working issue. Now, get started to grasp how.

Method 1. Keep your Finger and the Fingerprint Sensor Clean and Dry

It is noted that the finger sensor can be pretty sensitive. If your finger is covered with water, gel, cream, or other substances, it will make the sensor of your iPhone/iPad home button a bit hard to scan your fingerprints. Therefore, you may easily run into the Touch ID not working problem.

Thus, when your Touch ID fails to work, clean and dry your hand. But not too dry, since it is also difficult for your fingerprint to be recognized, especially in winter. Then try again, and you may find that the Touch ID not working problem is automatically fixed now. If it is still not workable, it is advisable to delete the fingerprint and enroll in a new one.

Hints from our experts:

We have more solutions to tackle Touch ID not working, such as updating iOS version later in this article. But this may cost you plenty of time and can not guarantee success. Learn how to remove Touch ID without password, if you want to fix Touch ID not working as soon as possible.

Method 2. Remove the iPhone Case and Screen Protector

Some of you probably have sticked a particular waterproof case that obstructs the screen (with home button included) to protect your devices from being damaged someday. However, this may prevent the device’s Home button from scanning and detecting your fingerprints sensitively, thus failing to unlock iPhone/iPad screen with Touch ID.

Therefore, in such a situation, you are suggested to remove the iPhone case or screen protector you are using, then try using Touch ID to unlock the screen and see if it works properly now.

Method 3. Update iOS

To maintain the iOS performance in the best state, Apple would keep updating the iOS system to get the bugs fixed and enhance user experience as well as functionality. Hence, when you suffer from the Touch ID not working problem, updating the iOS system to the latest version may easily get it fixed (if you are not using the latest iOS system currently).

Method 4. Remove Touch ID without Password

Bumping into the Touch ID problem is irritating. But the most troublesome thing is the inability to access the locked iPhone/iPad when you also forget the password. If you unfortunately run into such an annoying situation and desire to directly remove Touch ID without password, you can only turn to a professional iOS unlocking tool to help.

The industry-leading software, Passvers iPhone Unlocker, provides powerful Touch ID removing functionality to help you unlock iPhone/iPad Touch ID and then access the device again without a password. You only need to connect your iPhone/iPad to your desktop, and then do several easy taps on Passvers iPhone Unlocker. The software will then remove Touch ID and enable you to access the device without lock. Except for Touch ID, it is also capable of removing other iOS screen locks, including the 4-digit/6-digit passcodes, and also Face ID.

⭐Great Features of Passvers iPhone Unlocker

  • User-friendly interface for even beginners to remove Touch ID with ease;
  • Compatible with all iPhone models and iOS versions;
  • Great success rate guarantees an efficient iPad/iPhone screen lock removal process;
  • Support bypassing iOS locks such as iCloud activation lock, screen time passcodes, Apple ID, MDM profiles, and iTunes backup encryption lock.

Next, let's see how to fix iPhone/iPad Touch ID not working error via Passvers iPhone Unlocker by bypassing its screen lock directly:


The operation will erase your device data, so make sure that you have backed up important data in advance.

Step 1. Install and launch Passvers. Connect your iPhone/iPad to the computer to enable Passvers iPhone Unlocker to detect it.

Step 2. Then, from the main interface, select the Wipe Passcode option to remove the Touch ID or digit passcode from your iOS device.

Step 3. You will be guided to download a firmware package to help remove the Touch ID and passcode you set for the iOS device. Submit the Start icon to get it downloaded following the instructions.

Step 4. When the firmware package is downloaded now, just start erasing the Touch ID and passcode of your iOS device by authorizing 0000 and also hit the Unlock icon. When it completes, you are able to get an unlocked device without requiring to enter password or Touch ID now.

How to Fix 'Unable to Activate Touch ID on This iPhone' Error

If you are notified with the error message Unable to Activate Touch ID on This iPhone after upgrading your iOS system or changing the system settings, generally, it is caused by improper system performance. To fix it and make Touch ID work normally again, you can try to reset the Touch ID feature or add a new fingerprint via the settings app.

How to Fix Touch ID and Home Button Not Working

If you found that the Home button failed to work together with the Touch ID, consider whether the Home button is damaged, especially after you have dropped the device on the ground. This situation may also happen after the replacement of screen or battery, as the hardware may be damaged during the replacement process.

In this case, you'd better contact the Apple support team to receive help from their professional technical team. They would help you analyze the problem in-depth and to fix the issue.

FAQs about Touch ID Not Working

Still getting confused on how to fix Touch ID not working? Continue to go through the following frequently asked questions to see if they can help you out!

Which iPhones and iPads have Touch ID?

As we know, Apple has developed the latest iOS devices without Home button, and users can select to unlock them using Face ID instead. Here we list the iPhones and iPads with Touch ID to help you know which of them may easily encounter the Touch ID not working problem:


  • iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus
  • iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus
  • iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus
  • iPhone SE (2016, 2020, 2022)
  • iPhone 5s


  • iPad Mini 3, iPad Mini 4, iPad Mini (5th generation), iPad Mini (6th generation)
  • iPad (5th Generation), iPad (6th Generation), iPad (7th Generation), iPad (8th Generation), iPad (9th Generation), iPad (10th Generation)
  • iPad Air 2, iPad Air (3rd generation), iPad Air (4th generation), iPad Air (5th generation)
  • iPad Pro (1st Generation, 9.7-inch & 12.9-inch), iPad Pro (2nd Generation, 10.5-inch & 12.9-inch)

Why is Touch ID not working suddenly?

When Touch ID is not working on your iPhone/iPad, the most possible causes can be:

1. User Errors

The wrong performance by users can be one of the reasons. The capacitive sensor works by measuring the differences of ridges and valleys on your fingerprints. The stainless steel ring, surrounding the sensor button, works as a switch to enable the sensor on or off. Therefore, to make Touch ID work properly, you need to place your finger not only on the home button, but also on the stainless steel ring.

Meanwhile, since the capacitive sensor is made of raw silicon, it is sensitive and fragile to circumstances, like moisture or dust. The recognition will fail if your hands are too oily or dry (especially in winter).

2. Touch Sensor

The trouble with Touch ID fingerprint reader is also accountable. Although the capacitive sensor is covered with sapphire crystal, a hard material, it will cease to work properly when the home button gets scraped or scuffed. So as the metal ring surrounds it. You may fail to use Touch ID if the crystal layer or the metal ring gets damaged.

If you have encountered the Touch ID issue and need to get it fixed, refer to the aforementioned methods to regain access to your device.


Don’t panic when Touch ID fails to perform on your iPhone/iPad as usual, because there are appropriate methods to work it out under different scenarios. Based on your situation, simply select the most suitable method to fix the Touch ID not working issue. If you want to remove Touch ID on your iPhone/iPad without password, feel free to install and try out Passvers iPhone Unlocker to set your devices free from screen lock right away!


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