How to Change the Time on an iPad

The Settings app can change the configuration of the time on an iPad

What to Know

  • Settings app: General > Date & Time and turn off the Set Automatically toggle.
  • Next, tap the time that appears below to manually set the iPad's clock.

An iPad sets the correct time automatically when you set it up, but here's how to change the time if need to.

How to Change the Time on iPad

Follow the steps below to change the time on an iPad.

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Select General.

    iPad Settings app with General selected
  3. Select Date & Time.

    iPad's Settings with the General menu options visible
  4. Tap Set Automatically to turn this feature off. A new field will appear below it.

    Date & Time settings in the iPad's Settings app
  5. Select the time that appears in the new field below Set Automatically. This opens a calendar and time menu that will let you enter the time manually.

    Date & Time settings in the iPad's settings app with the time set manually

Any change to the iPad's time takes effect immediately and now you can exit the Settings app when finished.

Why Is the Time Wrong on My New iPad?

An iPad will attempt to set the time during the first-time setup process, but it will be unsuccessful if an iPad fails to establish an Internet connection during setup. The iPad should prompt you to set the time manually if this occurs, but it's easy to overlook this step.

An error or bug can also cause the issue. An iPad sets time automatically by detecting its location and then applying the correct time. It's usually right, but it's not perfect, and the iPad will set the wrong time if it's wrong about its location.

The steps above will let you manually set the correct time to fix an error.

Alternatively, you can turn Set Automatically off, then back on. This forces the iPad to repeat its attempt to find the time automatically and that may clear up your problem.

Should I Set the Time Automatically or Manually on iPad?

It's best to leave the Set Automatically feature on, if possible. If the feature isn't working correctly, repeatedly flipping Set Automatically on and off while connected to the Internet may clear up the issue. You can also try manually setting the time and then turning Set Automatically back on.

Manually setting the time on an iPad means the time may not adjust correctly for Daylight Savings Time, if this applies to your area. The iPad's clock won't automatically update if you cross into a new time zone, either.

Besides showing an incorrect time, this might cause calendar notifications or alarms to occur at the wrong time. The more the iPad's manually set time differs from the correct time, the more noticeable the issue will become.

  • How do I change the clock on the iPad lock screen?

    You don't have many options to customize your lock screen clock. You can use the Date & Time settings to choose between a 12- and 24-hour clock and whether the 12-hour time includes "AM" and "PM," but that's it. A third-party clock app can give you a different look, but it won't appear when the iPad is locked.

  • How do I enable an always-on display clock on an iPad?

    A workaround if you want to use your iPad as a clock when it isn't in use is to get a third-party clock app, and then go to Settings > Display & Brightness > Auto-Lock and set the option to Never. Then, open the app, and it will only show the clock; the iPad will stay on unless you manually lock it.

Was this page helpful?