“This accessory is not optimized for this iPhone…” with Nothing Connected

Some users have reported an issue in which the iPhone displays the message “This accessory is not optimized for this iPhone…” despite the fact that no accessory is connected to the phone.


In many cases, this issue is caused by debris in the iPhone’s dock connector. As such, you can try cleaning the dock connecter using a soft toothbrush or a dry cotton swab.


  1. says

    Actually the problem is deeper than this.. I’ve noticed that while my phone still rings – ringtones are audible – the audio is missing from games and iPod videos.

  2. says

    Firstly, change iphone mode to Airplane.
    Secondly, connect iphone to iTunes on PC
    Thirdly, turn off iphone (iphone still connects to PC)
    Lastly, turn on iphone.
    Problem solved.

  3. says

    brothers, i accidentally dropped my iphone 3gs in water, i dried it, kept 2.5 day in rice. Then turned on, everything fine but this msg started showing up. google suggested cleaning speakers, n stuff from outside. it didnt work. so i disassembled my iphone completely and found green fungus type of stuff in many places. i cleaned them all with toothbrush and a bit of moisture. and when i put it back again, the issue was gone, no message and speakers started working. GOODLUCK to u guys

  4. says

    Wife got 32gb 4 I got 16gb 4 I updated to 4.2 os, she didn’t. mines like a Fri afternoon phone. Complete pain, managed to get audio back by repeatedly plugging and unplugging charge cable. Still getting “This accessory” message even if nothing is connected. will go back to O2 Fri, because this is obviously shit.
    Tried hard restore, tried restore (reset store factory setting, resync on itunes) nowt worked
    Cheers Charlie?

  5. says

    I have the same problem as ‘GameDayDog’ :/ Tried cleaning
    the dock but no such luck, gonna have to take it back to Orange,
    who will probably charge me an arm and a leg to fix it..

  6. says

    Cleaning the dock connector worked for me on a fairly new Iphone 4, it seems like dirt in the connector closes a circuit and makes the phone think something (unsupported) is connected.

  7. Bryan78 says

    I had same msg, “…not optimized…” etc, and I tried restarting, blowing out port with air compressor. But what seems to HAVE WORKED is getting grime out of the charging port. You can’t see it, but its there, especially after many port attachments.

    I used 100% isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol on a Q-tip and carefully but thoroughly cleaned out port. I used powerful reading glasses to look down inside port, and I could see small flecks of dirt. It accumulated quickly on the Q-tip. After doing this, the pop-up, which was “popping up” every few seconds, flickered and stopped altogether! It has been about 18 hours now and it has not returned. Furthermore, the volume has not turned off of my speakers. It’s working fine! I hope this helps. Good luck, and thanks to everyone for all the suggestions.

  8. Mike Kaye says

    Well I had the dreaded… “This accessory is not optimized for this iPhone” message.

    I’ve got a 3GS out of warranty of course. The message would pop-up every few minutes and I’d lose the volume control and sound, even if the phone sat by itself on the table it would light up on its own and display the message.

    I tried all the suggestions, tried the software suggestions first, Airplane Mode and iTunes reset, tried to restore, no luck.

    Then tried all the connector suggestions, blew out the connector with canned-air, compressed air, even vacuumed it out, cleaned it with isopropanol, cleaned with contact-cleaner and Q-tips, it would seem to be good for four or five minutes but would then pop right back up once again. So I was sure it had to be the connector itself.

    I went to the Apple Store, to see what the Genius’ had in store, they tried canned-air then said sorry nothing they can do, but for $199 they’d replace it with another 3GS. Not cool… They suggested maybe a third-party repair shop, I thanked them for their time and though maybe I’d tried to replace the connector myself.

    Since the chances of survival were now 50-50 I figured what the hell, I took an emery board and using the fine grit side, ran it across the terminals inside the connector a couple times and then blew it out.


    It’s been working great, tested it with the charger and pc/iTunes and every thing is working fine now.

    If all else fails, I Hope this might help someone else.

  9. Miami6 says

    Ive tried everything on here… Nothing. It works for about 3 minutes then the message pops up again.smfh

  10. Ray says

    I’ve got the same issue with the “This accessory is not optimized for this iPhone” message every few ninutes and the audio is missing from iPod videos on an iPhone 4. Saw some green type stuff in the connector and cleaned it all out with alcohol, but its still not working.

    The issue started happening yesterday, but about two days ago when my phone was in my jean pocket, I was at work in the basement and had to run through a little water that was spraying over the walkway from a broken pipe. I only got a little wet…but now after reading how “shagidelic” above dropped his in water and found green fungus on the inside, Im thinking some water may have got inside the connector which made it turn green. Now Im contemplating taking it apart to clean some more or using an emery board on the connectors like “Mike Kaye” above did to get his working. Will report back on the results.

    Hopefully I can fix it, I wanna sale this thing when the iPhone 5 comes out.

  11. Jebbi zooks says

    All I can say is I dropped my Ip4 on a damp towel from about 6 inches and this message annoyed the hell out of me. I use a cotton swab with clean hands and rolled one end to fit in the headphone jack and flattened the other for the docking port. Haven’t seen it on my screen yet, knock on wood.

  12. Re says

    just do the toothbrush one, it’s amazing, works straight away, it hasn’t been coming out for an hour now, great success!

  13. carlos says

    first i clean the dock with a clip, and it was really dirty, then i clean the pins with a paper with alcohol, my iphone 4 works again without problems.
    hope this helps you

  14. Donna says

    That message only comes up for me when I first plug it into the car connector. I ignore it. Should I be doing anything else?

  15. Terrancr says

    I dropped my iPhone inside of a plastic cup with Chardonnay inside took it out and dried it . Everything worked except for the system sound which disables ur iPod, YouTube, gaming, text Msg sound etc it would only ring when people are calling I used the toothbrush method and it worked great!!! I used an old toothbrush put a few drops of rubbing alcohol on it and started scrubbing the charging connector on the bottom of the phone afterward I use the can duster to dry it out and now it works perfectly!!!

  16. Terrancr says

    By the way make sure your toothbrush is complete dry before u putting the rubbing alcohol on it, u wouldn’t want to put anymore water in there

  17. Jmize says

    I got the same issue after ziplock bagging my iphone during a trip to six flags and somehow moisture still got in the bag. I checked and it was completely sealed still… The heat probably made it worse… But anyways- After hard reset, power/home button reboot, five different times cleaning out dock connector with toothpick, canned air, toothbrush with video game pin connector cleaner (fancy rubbing alcohol, then cotton swab in dock connector with game cleaner… nothing. Then I used the swab with cleaner in the headphone dock and ran a dry swab through and so far the message has stopped. Fingers crossed and prayers said.

  18. Pink says

    Used a dry q-tip to clean the headphone jack and port; blew canned air in both ends; used a blow-dryer after that. No more annoying error. Hooray!

  19. Jason says

    Had same issues seems to be fixed by me cleaning headphone jack used paper clip to move some paper towel around the jack

  20. Nataliieeeee98 says

    I was using it in the shower and the messages suddenly came up!! I’ve tried a hair dryer and a paint brush and didn’t work. My sound comes on for about a minute then the message comes up and it goes silent again I wanna throw my phone against a wall :(

  21. Nataliieeeee98 says

    Also I’ve now tried with a toothbrush. Works for a minute then back up with the signs and to silent!

  22. Rodney says

    Ok this is gonna sound kinda stupid but it worked for me so far. I have been having the same issue and when the volume is gone on everything if you try to raise or lower it there is nothing there except the bell when u press the volume buttons. So I clicked the ringer mute button above the + button and it showed my phone in mute then I clicked it again and then all of a sudden I had volume and the message stopped! I don’t know why or if that will work for other people since it is a simple fix for me but figured I would share it with everyone maybe other people will get lucky as myself so far but if the message pops back up I will let everyone know

  23. Sara says

    I dropped my phone in a bathtub, starting get this message. I had gotten it once before when my 1 yr old daughter drooled all over my phone and my husband put a toothpick n the headphone jack and fixed. This second moisture incident was not so simple. I knew it was bad. I tried the resets and all that. Was reading this thread and wanted to try the rubbing alcohol, all I had was 50% but I had been dealing with this stupid message for almost a week so I figured sink or swim. Used a qtip

  24. Sara says

    I accidentally hit publish.. Anyways used a q tip and cleaned out the headphone jack and port, the whole time that stupid message kept popping up while I was cleaning it. Used a dry q tip and redid everything to get any excess moisture from my half strength alcohol, used a sunglasses cloth to go back in thru the port and it worked… For a while. About 5 minutes. And then back to the annoying message. So I think off to apple I go. But it was temporary and I may try it again to see if I can make it last longer. Was almost so excited!

  25. Jack says

    This is so funny , I never even looked in the dock , but definately something stuck in there. After removing it it works fine. Thax

  26. Mike says

    First of all, I want to mention that mine got messed up so bad that I couldn’t even use headphones in it (I’ve got a 3gs 32). Secondly, I cleaned my dock (loads, loads od dust there btw) – nothing happened. Then I ripped up a paper tissue and rolled it in slick sticks that I inserted in my audiojack, got them as far in as possible (huge load of dust there too) which seemed to fix the problem, for about 3 minutes. Now Im getting the error again. :(

  27. Brad says

    Thanks. Worked for me just now. My volume up and down status bar is now working also & got rid of that msg!

  28. Dave says

    Just read some respondes fromy phone at my landscaping job during my lunch break. Found a small root, cleaned it off on my pants, and started cleaning out my dock with the root. My phone is now fixed and I can say I am now one with nature

  29. Katelyn says

    I spilled a little bit of chocolate milk on my iphone 4 and i was receiving the dreaded error message everyone else has received. I went to true value and bought a can of compressed air and sprayed both the headphone jack and the dock at the bottom of the iphone and i havent received the message since! it just needs dryed out !

  30. annoyed says

    ahhh my iphone 4 is pretty much brand new… and now its doing stupid annoying message that pops up every 5 sec.
    i don’t know what to do.
    i tried cleaning it with a tooth brush, paint brush, blowing in it, hair dryer, i have tried everything! blowing in it lasts for about maybe 10 sec and then it pops again and i can’t hear my ipod.
    please help me. since your guys’s phone works now. tell me what you did so i can try it!

  31. says

    i also got this problem. i try to clean my usb dock etc. but the problem still there. then i went to repair shop dissemble my unit then clean the interior USB dock connector using a thinner i think. then assemble the phone again. luckily the annoying pop up warning is gone and the annoying light up every 30 sec. is gone. hope the problem will not come back.

    i got this problem when im cleaning my iphone 3gs using cotton and alcohol and i think the small amount of alcohol drop into USB port.

    the USB port is grounded that’s why this warning sign is keep pop out.

  32. Tee says

    I have a brand new iphone4 and got a little bit of water on the phone. This message was popping up and the speaker was not working. I cleaned both the jack & the dock with a toothbrush & a Q-tip and now it is working! Thanks so much for the help !!!

  33. Sarah says

    After trying to find a site that would allow me to understand what the problem was.. i pretty much tried every possible suggestion suggested on this page.
    Cleaned the headphone port with the cotton off an ear bud rubbed over with using an alcohol swab.
    Then turned to the charging port (at bottom of phone).
    After cleaning the port using a thin pin and the alcohol swab.. the message hasn’t popped back up.
    Concerntrated on cleaning both pins 11 and 21.
    Cleaned charger too.
    So good so far!!

  34. Ashish says

    My iphone sound has gone completely off. I have tried the toothbrush way at my charging port and my cellphone started working again. Thanks for the tip :)

  35. Reile says

    Got the same experience mentioned above. All i did was
    brush gently and i use hair blower for about 2 minutes and that’s
    it works perfectly.

    Hope this can help!!!

  36. Joe joe says

    I had this same problem and this is how I fixed it. Turn on airplane mode then hit your lock button. Then go back and turn airplane mode off. Go to a game and see if u have sound. If u do then go to iPod and u should be able to see the volume slider and Ur problem should be solved

  37. chris says

    Compressed air fixed it for me i tried everything else too beforehand so it could be a combo of all of it.

  38. Taylor says

    I used a toothbrush to clean the port, on brush and the message was gone and the audio worked perfectly!

  39. MzPrincess says

    The toothbrush works !! I cleaned it under the bathroom lights (heat lights). I could see every bit of dust in the charger dock on the phone. I had an alcohol swab that I put in their first then used a dry old toothbrush to pick it all out!! I cleaned the charging docking station too as it’s collects a bit of dust (being on my bedside table) just in case. All back to normal after 4 or so months!! :)

  40. MzPrincess says

    The toothbrush works !! I cleaned it under the bathroom lights (heat lights). I could see every bit of dust in the charger dock on the phone. I had an alcohol swab that I put in their first then used a dry old toothbrush to pick it all out!! I cleaned the charging docking station too, just in case. All back to normal after 4 or so months!! :)

  41. Paul says

    A couple of wipes with a toothbrush at the charge port plus a little gentle digging with a toothpick got a fair amount of lint out of my 3GS and problem solved!


  42. Dale says

    Well…… I poured Coke on mine – Yeah it was an accident. Dried it and all seemed to work except speaker. Put in bag of rice for two days – all works but getting message – ” This accessory not optimized for this iPhone ” and ” charging not supported with this accessory ”
    Anyone have any suggestions ?

  43. Scott says

    Accidentally put it in a cup with an inch or so of water in my cup holder in my car and got the message later. Did a combo of rice-dunking for about an hour, then hit it with some compressed air and it’s good as new… Good luck!

  44. Hal says

    The cleaning out thing seemed to work for me but only after I took a toothpick and shaved it down thin enough to get in on the skinny side of the connector plug inside of the port. I’d tried it a few times just getting to the easy parts but, apparently, that was where the gunk was that was shorting out its little brain. Problem solved (so far)… The toothpick is a good solution as the wood is softer than the metal inside of the port and, as such, is less likely to damage the printed metal connections than a metal paperclip would be-

  45. mandingo says

    Hi guys,
    i just had this problem in the last 24 hours and it has been annoying the hell out of me.. i connected my ip4 to my car radio and was listening to some music on a delivery, i took the iphone out did my delivery, reinserted the usb cable into the dock i then realised that the floor of the car was wet where i had the dock part of the usb cable resting. this message then started displaying. thanks to the cleaning suggestions here the problem seems to be resolved (touch wood)..
    i used a small (unused) toothbrush to clean out the headphone jack area and the dock area, mostly the dock area because i think this is where the problem stemmed. it worked immediately and has been for the last 20 mins, whereas the message displayed every 2 mins or so leaving the phone untouched. so my tip is to GIVE THE IPHONE DOCK A GOOD CLEANING!!!
    thanks guys :)

  46. Mabs says

    NOthing has worked for me.


    • ADELLE says

      You need to soften the debris in the connector! After reading many posts put onto Internet I used nail polish remover using a flattened cotton bud then using the dry side to rub away any excess dirt! I then got the hairdryer on cold and dried it all out for a minute, and voila I could not believe it worked after one month of having this annoying problem and I Finally have my volume button working again! Good luck!!

  47. Elizabeth says

    I dropped my iphone 4 in ketchup after only owning it for about a week. I was getting this stupid message like every minute as soon as I dismissed it the message would pop back up. I cleaned the dock with a toothbrush and cotton swab and rebooted it. After one day the message has not come up. I think I fixed it. Who knew ketchup is bad for an iphone :)

    Thanks everyone for the helpful tips

  48. anand says

    in ma case i plugged it for charging .. but it was the wrong time i guess.. bczz the voltage was fluctuating… wen i uplugged it to attend a call n wen i hang up the message started to pop up…. gosh..!!! such an irritatin thng…!
    i cudnt gt the beep sound wen i lock or unlock the phone, der is no click sound wen i type smthn…! well i thnk its workin fin nw…!!!!!

  49. Kyle says

    Yeah i cleaned out the port, got all the dust out and its still popping up.I was very sure that cleaning the port out would work beacuse there was so much dust and lint in the port, but sadly it didnt work. thanks a lot apple

  50. Tim says

    I didn’t drop my iphone in water or anything, but it started to give me the message whenever it was near humidity. I thought the port was clean even after I tried the toothpick. Didn’t fix it, so I tried the toothbrush and I couldn’t believe how much dust came out. Solved the issue in about 2 minutes!

  51. Jenna says

    omg it worked! I’ve been getting the same error and my audio would cut out most of the time. Tried the qtips and that didnt work, but the toothbrush did!!! I’m so excited!!! Thank you for all the tips, you just saved me a lot of money : )

  52. L8N says

    I’ve been running using my iPhone in an arm band (TuneBand) to listen to music and so I can call for a pickup if I overdo it. Sweat got into the dock connector and is causing this message. I’ve tried using compressed air to blow it out. I’ve tried a soft toothbrush. I tried turning it off and on. I just tried the forced reboot by pushing the two buttons (although, I’m not sure how that’s different from powering it off and on). I can’t get it to clear. When I click the side buttons to change the volume, the volume meter doesn’t show up under the volume graphic. I’m not getting audio in certain apps. It’s driving me crazy.

  53. Jane says

    I am so delighted – the toothbrush trick did it for me too!!! No more infuriating pop up messages about applications and non attached chargers and cellular noise. Brilliant.

  54. Chicken says

    I was quite skeptical of this advice, but reluctantly cleaned the phone with a toothbrush and it worked!! Clicks are back, no more annoying pop up errors…

  55. Marcia says

    OMG this error message was so annoying…!!! I did the factory reset thinking it would go away which it did but only for a little while. When it started up again it happend every 30 seconds Ughhhhh Did the toothbrush thing and it worked..!!! Yay 😀

  56. brad says

    Mine started as soon as I drove out of the parking lot from the store where I got it! so far cleaning and air have not fixed the problem.

  57. Salvo Fresta says

    Waters spilled on my iphone. used a dryer and cleaned the docking part of the iphone and works good now. Thanks heaps guys

  58. Alison says

    Well, I spilled a little bit of coffee on mine a little bit ago and just tried it… fingers crossed the qtip/toothbrush does the trick….


  59. Froog says

    I took my iphone to bits, stuck it in the washing machine on one hr wash, but no spin. Then dried the parts on an open fire, then glued back together. This didn’t work for me, so I don’t advise this method.

  60. Tom says

    I’ve tried the dry toothbrush,compressed air and it worked for a short time now the message is back again. I can’t seem to solve this issue! Any help plz??!!! Cheers

  61. says

    Nooo it doesnt work on my iPhone… Y? I cleaned the dock with A perfume and cleaned with dry toothbrush and toothpick..buh doesn’t work. When somebody calls me then sound work.. But not get sound in Playing music, it work only in headphones…plz help me…

  62. says

    I have the same problem. making me crazy. i have tried to clean up with toothbrush and blow up with compress air everywhere stil the same. i feel headphone jack is the problem…. Please help…

  63. Ethan says

    I just used a needle cause nuthen else worked for me and just gave the terminals on the side a gentle scratch so yeah give that a try

  64. mahesh says

    i have problem with my iphone4 is saying when i play music .. its showing ( THIS ACCESSORY NOT OPTMIZE WITH YOUR IPHONE4)it was fall dowen in to the water ,,after that emmedetly i took & oppen make it dry with hair drayer now everything is fine accepet sound its some time ok but after few munet its showing this accessory not optimized for this i phone….and you may experience noise caused by cellular singnal strength )is aiiwayes comming with my iphone 4 pz help me ho do i fix it

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