How to Fix It When #Images Is Not Working on iPhone

9 ways to resolve the dreaded 'could not share image' error

The Images app (#images) included in Messages for iOS provides a library of searchable gifs you can instantly add to texts with your friends. Occasionally, however, you may receive an error message when you try to use it. The alert appears when you're trying to send a gif through Images and says:

Could not share image. The internet connection appears to be offline.

Instructions in this article apply to iPhones and iPads running iOS 10 and later.

Reasons Images for Messages Stops Working

A variety of issues may prevent Images for Messages from working. Some possible culprits include:

  • Running an outdated version of iOS.
  • A glitch in Messages.
  • Connection issues with your Wi-Fi or cellular network.

What to Do When Images Are Not Working on iPhone

If you're getting the Could not share image error from Messages, here are some steps to try.

  1. Close and reopen Messages. It's possible the error is coming from something wrong with the Messages app, and you just need to give it a fresh start. Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to open the device's App Switcher, and then manually close Messages. Then, return to the Home screen to open it and try again.

  2. Toggle Images. You may be able to restore the Images functionality by temporarily removing and then reactivating it. To do so, scroll to the right side of the apps bar in Messages and tap the More button. Select Edit in the top-right corner.

    Edit settings in Messages' app tray

    Tap the minus button next to Images. Choose Remove from Favorites. Images will move down to the More Apps section. From there, tap the plus button to turn it back on.

    Deactivating and reactivating Images in Messages
  3. Try a different network (or cellular). If you have access to a different wireless network, try connecting to that one to see if it sorts out the problem. On an iPhone or cellular-capable iPad, you can also try using that connection.

  4. Cycle Wi-Fi. If it's your internet connection that's causing the issue with Images, you can try disconnecting and reconnecting to your network. To do so, either open Control Center or the Settings app. Turn off Wi-Fi, wait a minute, and then reconnect to see if Images starts working again.

    Alternatively, turn on Airplane Mode, which stops all incoming and outgoing signals.

  5. Make sure SMS is on. If Images isn't working when you text people who don't have iPhones (i.e., their bubbles in Messages are green instead of blue), you should check to see if your phone is set to send basic text messages. Go to Settings > Messages and ensure that the switch next to Send as SMS is in the on/green position.

  6. Troubleshoot your Wi-Fi and network. If Images isn't the problem, your network connection might be. Unplug your modem and router (if they're separate devices) for 30 seconds, and then plug them back in and see if the error disappears.

  7. Restart your iPhone or iPad. Turning your device off for a minute will cycle both its power and internet connectivity. When you turn it back on, it will reconnect to the internet, and this might be enough to shake out some bugs and glitches.

  8. Check for an iOS update. Whether you're using iOS on the iPhone or the newer iPadOS for tablets, the process for making sure you're using the most recent version is the same. Open Settings, and then go to General > Software Update. your device will check for a new version. If one is available, follow the on-screen prompts to download and install the update.

  9. Reset network settings. A more drastic technique involves purging all of the stored network data from your phone or tablet. When you reset these settings, your device forgets all of the networks and login information it's stored and starts fresh. This process also causes your device to restart.

    Once you're back in, you'll need to reconnect to your home network (or whichever one you're using) and re-enter the password.

    Resetting network settings isn't as intensive as resetting your device.

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