How to Connect an iPhone to Wi-Fi

Connect to Wi-Fi on your iPhone to get a faster internet connection

kid doing homework with iphone

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To get the fastest internet connection for your iPhone, connect to Wi-Fi. On an iPod touch, the only way to get online is Wi-Fi since it doesn't support cellular data connections. Wi-Fi is a high-speed wireless networking connection found in homes, offices, coffee shops, restaurants, and other places. Wi-Fi doesn't have the data limits that phone companies' monthly plans impose on cellular data use. Some Wi-Fi networks are private and password protected (your home or office network, for instance), while some are public and available to anyone, either for free or a fee.

Instructions in this article apply to iOS 12 and iOS 11 running on iPhone X, iPhone 8 series, iPhone 7 series, iPad, and iPod touch.

How to Connect an iPhone to Wi-Fi

To get online using Wi-Fi on an iOS device such as an iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad, follow these steps:

  1. From the home screen, tap the Settings app.

  2. Tap Wi-Fi, then turn on the Wi-Fi toggle switch. A list of all available networks appears in the Choose a Network section.

    If you don't see any available networks, none may be in range.

    Wi-Fi on iPhone
  3. Two kinds of Wi-Fi networks exist: public and private. Private networks have a lock icon next to them, and public ones don't. The bars next to each network name indicate the strength of the connection — the more bars, the faster the connection.

    To join a public network, tap the network's name. To join a private network, tap the network's name, enter the password, then tap Join.

    Connect iPhone to Wi-Fi
  4. More advanced users can click the arrow at the right of the network name to enter more specific settings, but the everyday user won't need this.

If the iPhone doesn't connect to Wi-Fi, check out how to fix an iPhone that can't connect to Wi-Fi. If the Wi-Fi menu is disabled, find out how to fix grayed-out Wi-Fi on an iPhone.

Access Wi-Fi Through Control Center

If the iPhone runs iOS 7 or higher, use Control Center for one-touch ability to turn Wi-Fi on and off. Access Control Center by swiping up from the bottom of the screen.

If you have an iPhone X or newer, swipe down from the upper-right corner.

Control Center won't let you choose the network you want to connect to. Instead, it automatically connects to networks the device has used in the past when these networks are available. That makes it great for a quick way to connect at work or at home.