How to Refresh iPhone

Give your phone a fresh start, fast

What to Know

  • Hold the Side button until the power down prompt appears. Next, press and hold the Home button until the home screen reappears.
  • If your iPhone has no Home button, add a virtual one with AssistiveTouch. Then go to Settings > General > Shut Down.
  • Tap and hold the virtual Home button until you return to your home screen.

This article explains what it means to refresh an iPhone 4 or later and how to do it on all models that support refreshing.

Where Is the Refresh Button on iPhone?

When your iPhone or apps are running slow or not responding, you have a few options to speed them up again. Maybe the quickest—and least well-known—way to do this is to refresh your iPhone.

Refreshing an iPhone is a hidden trick. There's no physical button on the iPhone to refresh its memory. There's also no menu or onscreen option you'll find in the Settings app or anywhere else. So to get the benefits of refreshing an iPhone's memory, you need to know these steps.

How Do I Refresh My iPhone X and Newer?

To refresh an iPhone, you need a Home button. Unfortunately, there's no physical Home button on the iPhone X and newer (the iPhone 8 has a Home button, but it's different from previous models, so these tips apply to it, too). Luckily, you can enable a virtual on-screen Home button. Here's everything you need to do:

  1. Go to Settings > Accessibility > Touch.

  2. Tap AssistiveTouch > move the AssistiveTouch slider to on/green.

  3. An onscreen Home button is added to your screen. Tap it to reveal the options. The Home option is the one we need here.

    Steps to turn on Assistive Touch on an iPhone.
  4. Go to Settings > General > Shut Down.

  5. On the shut-down screen, tap the onscreen Home button.

  6. In the pop-up, tap and hold Home.

    Using the Assistive Touch feature to shutdown an iPhone.
  7. When your iPhone returns to the home screen, let go of the screen. If you use a passcode on your iPhone, you'll go to the passcode-entry screen. Your iPhone is now refreshed.

How Do I Refresh My iPhone 7 and Earlier Models?

Refreshing an iPhone 7 and earlier is more straightforward than the latest models. That's because these models have a physical Home button you can use. These steps apply to the iPhone 4 through 7:

  1. Press and hold the sleep/wake/Side button until the shut-down screen appears.

  2. Let go of the sleep/wake/Side button.

  3. Press and hold the Home button.

  4. When you return to your home screen or passcode screen, let go of the Home button. Your iPhone has been refreshed.

What Happens When You Refresh Your iPhone?

Refreshing your memory clears the active memory that your iPhone is using to run apps and the OS. It's a lighter version of what happens when you restart your iPhone. It gives your apps and critical parts of the OS a chance to restart themselves and hopefully correct whatever was causing them to run slowly. Because only the active memory is refreshed, you don't have to worry about losing data. Everything that's stored on your iPhone is untouched.

Refreshed your iPhone, and things still running slowly? A complete restart is always an excellent next step. However, if even that doesn't work, try updating the sluggish apps or even updating your iPhone's version of the iOS.

  • How do I refresh the calendar on my iPhone?

    On iPhones with iOS 13 and later, open the app > select Calendars > and swipe down from the top of the screen to refresh and sync your calendar information. If nothing updates, ensure you have iCloud turned on for your calendars from Settings > your name > iCloud. You can also adjust your calendar update settings from Settings > Calendar > Sync and refresh the Calendar app again.

  • How do I refresh the cache on an iPhone?

    To clear your iPhone cache in Safari, go to Settings Safari > Clear History and Website Data. To clear the cache in other apps, select the app from your iPhone's Settings and move the tab to the on position next to Reset cached content.

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