Widgets Not Working on iPhone or iPad

Several users have said that widgets are not working for them as expected. This article lists several troubleshooting tips that you can use to fix the following widgets problems on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  • Widgets are not showing up.
  • Some of the widget apps are missing or not updating.
  • Some of the widget apps are not displaying content, and you may see messages like “couldn’t load stories” or “no stories to show” etc.
  • Widgets have stopped working entirely.

By default, your device shows you widgets from the Weather, Stocks, Calendar, Maps, Siri apps, and more. However, that is not all. Many third-party apps (whether they’re popular apps or not) include useful widgets that you can add to widgets.

If you are having this issue also, then this article is for you. Try the following steps in order. After trying each step below, open your widgets again to see if you’ve fixed your issue.

Before you do anything, please ensure that your device is using the latest version of iOS or iPadOS. You can easily update your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to the latest version of iOS or iPadOS wirelessly by going to Settings > General > Software Update.

Furthermore, please ensure that all of your apps are up to date. You can manually update your apps by opening the App Store on your device or turn on automatic updates by going to Settings > [your name] > iTunes & App Store > App Updates.

Restart your device

Restart your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch but before restarting, close all apps and then restart. This is a two-step process. Here is how:

1. Force close all apps: On an iPhone X and later or an iPad (running iOS 12 or iPadOS), at the Home screen of your device, swipe up from the bottom of your screen. On other iPhone and iPad models, double press the Home button. This will open your most recently used apps. This is also called App Switcher. Then use a quick swipe upwards to close all of the apps.

Close Apps

2. Now restart your device. Here is how:

  • iPhone X, 11 or later, and Face ID iPad models: Press and hold the side and the volume up (or down) buttons together until you see the power off slider. Then drag the slider. Wait for your device to fully power off. Then press and hold the side button until you see the Apple logo.
  • Other iPhone and iPad models or all iPod touch models: Press and hold the side or top button until the power off slider appears. Drag the onscreen slider. And then press and hold the side button until the Apple logo appears.

Change the language for your device

Temporarily change the language of your iPhone or iPad. Here is how:

  • On your device, tap Settings > General > Language & Region > [Device] Language > and then select a language from the list. For example, if your current setting is “English (US)”, change it to “English (Canada)”.
  • Your device will ask you to confirm your selection.
  • Your device will update your device.
  • Now check your widgets. Are they working? If Widgets are working, again go to Settings > General > Language & Region > [Device] Language and change the language back to its original setting. Then check Widgets again. If Widgets are not working, change the language back, and then try the next tip.
Change device language

Check your settings

If you are having issues with some of your widgets, your settings may not be correct. Please check the following:

1. Some apps may not work if Location Services is disabled. For example, if you are having issues with a weather widget app (or similar apps), ensure that Location Services is turned on for it. If these apps are not allowed to access your location, you may not be able to function. You can check this by going to Settings > Privacy > Location Services. Ensure that Location Services is enabled. Scroll down and find the app and change its location setting. Select While Using the App.

Location Services

See also: Location Services Not Working (iOS, iPadOS), Fix

2. Some apps may require additional settings, especially security-sensitive apps like credit card apps. You may have to enable Widgets within the app.

3. If some of the widget apps are not refreshing themselves, please ensure that Background App Refresh is turned on. If this is disabled, apps can not check for updates and new content when they aren’t actively in use. On your device, go to Settings > General > Background App Refresh and turn on Background App Refresh.

Background App Refresh

4. If the Batteries widget is not working, please ensure that your iPhone or iPad is connected to another supported device or accessory via Bluetooth.

5. On your iPad, your Widgets can stay on your Home screen. If you are having widget issues with this meaning if Widgets disappears from your Home screen, check your Today View setting. On your iPad, open Settings > Home Screen & Dock (or Display & Brightness) > and make sure that Keep Today View on Home Screen is turned on.

Keep Today View on Home Screen

6. If you are unable to open your Widgets when your device is locked, it may be again your setting. On your device, tap Settings > then depending on your device [Face ID & Passcode] or [Touch ID & Passcode] or [Passcode]. Enter your password. Then please ensure that Today View is turned on (under the Allow Access When Locked section).

Today View Locked Screen

Remove, re-add and remove, re-install

If you are still having issues with some of the widgets, first remove the widget that is not working from the Today View and then re-add. Here is how:

  • Swipe right and open your widgets.
  • Scroll down and tap Edit. Tap the red (-) icon to remove the widget.
  • Tap Done.
  • Restart your device.
  • Then re-add the widget. Again open your Today View screen by swiping right, tap Edit and this time tap the green (+) icon to re-add the widget.
  • Now check to see if it is working.
Add Widgets

If removing and then re-adding widgets do not work, now try to remove and reinstall the widget apps that you are having issues with.

  • Delete the app. Simply touch and hold and select Delete App.
  • Then open the App Store and find the same app and then download and install.
  • After that, add the app to widgets.

See also: Can’t Rearrange Apps On Home Screen? Fix

Dr. Serhat Kurt worked as a Senior Technology Director. He holds a doctoral degree (or doctorate) from the University of Illinois at Urbana / Champaign and a master’s degree from Purdue University. Here is his LinkedIn profile.

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