iPad / iPhone: Camera shutter will not open; how to fix

Several people have reported a problem where the camera shutter stays closed and frozen while the camera app is still open.

How to Fix Camera Shutter

Some users have reported that their device was replaced by a new device after they contacted Apple support about this issue. This indicates that this is in fact a hardware issue. So if you are having this issue, you may want to contact Apple, especially if the fixes below do not work for you.

Or you may try the following fixes:

  • Some users have reported that covering the front facing camera with a finger results in opening the shutter. However, you may come across the same issue the next time you open the camera.
  • Restart the Camera app. Simply double press the home button, and swipe the camera app upward then re-launch the camera app.
  • Turn your device off and on again by pressing and holding the Sleep/Wake button for a few seconds.
  • Reset your device by pressing and holding the home button and the sleep/wake button together until you see the Apple logo.
  • Try resetting all settings on your iPod Touch: Settings > General > Reset. Note that this will reset all of your preferences and settings but this will not affect all your data and media.


  1. Talat says

    All steps done,still shutter not opening.when perfect/solid solution is found please let me know.both front and back cameras also replaced still shutter not working.

    • lydia johnny says

      thank u for heiping me for my camera the promblem for my camera when u open it
      the sign on it turn off the camera and turn off again

      thank u very much


    • kevin says

      Hi i had the same prob i nearly got the camera replaced but lucky for me i did not. I was Trying for a week. Try this it worked for me now camera works fine now just turn Iphone of for many hours i mean all night when in bed for some strange reason the next day it was working maybe when iphone is off for hours rather than minutes seems to work please let me know if it worked maybe i was just lucky

      • Gay Hayward says

        that worked for awhile, but the problem came back after several pics and kept happening nore and more often. Now it is closed, apparently forever!!

  2. MLangston says

    YES!!!! That did it!! Didn’t have to reload any apps, music or well, anything! Just did the Reset, went through the initial iPhone config wizard (country, language, Apple legal agreement, etc.), and that was it!!

    By the way, did this on an iPhone 4 running latest iOS 5. Still have an issue with the front facing camera but don’t use it much anyway. So long as I can use the back camera (the one that matters) I’m good. Thanks for the tip!!

  3. Jon says

    Having the same problem, I tried covering the camera lense on front, and saw the button flicker that switches to front or back camera, I tapped that and it let me back into prompting for location services to be on. Tried the faceing camera side and it did it again, virtual shutter locked up, this time the little button that switches is gone.

    • Nikki says

      What did u do to fix? I dropped my phone in a puddle n now my camera won’t work. Tried the reset n that didn’t help

      • Heva says

        I have the same problem Nikki, I have tried everything and nothing has worked.. its only the camera that has water damage and not the Ipod… Its so annoying. Need to find a solution!

  4. Fixed it myself says

    This didn’t work for me. I even did a restore to factory settings. Genius Bar tech told me that my phone was 24 days out of warranty and would have to pay $60 to “try” to fix the phone, $149 to replace it, or $199/$299 to upgrade to 4S (because I qualified). Decided to wait it out a bit before I did anything. On a whim, I decided to try FaceTime tonight and was shocked that the camera worked. Immediately I switched over to the camera and VOILA…it works!!!! Thank god I didn’t spend the $$$.

    • Rhinn says

      Doing FaceTime worked for me and I’ve definitely had a chronic problem with my camera freezing up on me,,,TY Fixed it myself!

  5. Darion says

    I have an iphone 3 my camera app wont oppen eather . Ive been looking for a way how to fix it & a lot of times i see coments saying that we couldve jailbroken the wrong software or sometjing like that

  6. Markesia says

    I did ALL of the tips and my camera shutter is still not opening!! It’s been a week. Please help me. I even reseted it.

  7. Amoret says

    Covering the cameras worked, but it gave a funky picture, so I reset, and it doesn’t work at all now.

  8. Diego says

    If restoring doesn’t work and in case it is not hardware problem, there’s a way to fix it. Go to cydia and add any repo which includes Ifile. After installing Ifile, go into the system files: var/stash/ and search for the idiom which you have installed. Open and edit applications.g0ipf2/Camera.app/( the folder with the idiom used)/InfoPlist.strings. In this file change the display name for any name you want. It worked for me, if you’ve got a better way let me know :)

  9. Diego says

    Sometimes we’re told it is a hardware problem to the benefit of Apple. But don’t believe everything they say.

  10. says

    My camera has had not been working for ages and I decided to order a replacement camera module (about £4 on Amazon). Upon opening the phone I noticed a small eyelash had got caught between the camera connection and the logic board. I removed this, reseated the connector and it no works everytime.

    Very often just reseating a connection solves “hardware” issues.

    I hope this helps

  11. Taylah says

    My phone is doing the same thing! The shutter won’t open. I got my glass replaced by a company that isn’t under my contract (didn’t know that at the time) so I can’t take it to apple because they won’t accept it. Ever since I got the new glass the camera hasn’t worked and I’ve tried everything mentioned above. :(
    I’ve taken it back, they’ve pulled it a part and put it back together again and it still won’t work. Any ideas?!

  12. Moakesy says

    Above doesn’t work. It’s got to be a software problem with the pre installed camera app supplied by apple. Download a camera app that’s free or 69p. Problem solved. All cameras work.

    • Micjael Lang says

      This is the only way to truly fix. Power down the device. Remove the battery. Hold power button for 10 seconds. Replace the battery and power on the device. You have just successfully performed a hardware reset. Camera should function just as mine did.

        • ezroyboy says

          There are several tutorials on Youtube that will give you step by step instructions on how to remove the battery from an iphone. The batteries are easy to remove. All you need is a few tools and a good pair of eyes. Just follow the instructions on Youtube……

  13. Kaitlee says

    I tried all the tecniques and covering the lenses opened the shutter but using an app works for the back camera

  14. pa says

    what reset button do I press so many to choose and I don’t want to reset back to the start as my pics are not saved to iCloud

  15. Kirsten says

    I’ve tried all of those three ways to fix it and it doesn’t work. I have the iPod 4 and I got it in march 2012. It’s done this a few times before, sometimes it won’t work for a month, sometimes just a few days. The shutter won’t open, and after I while the shutter opens but there’s just a black screen

  16. Kirsten says

    I’m really mad. It always does this when I’m about to go somewhere big and will be planning on taking a lot of pictures. It’s like the universe is against me.. Haha but seriously. I need to fix it. I’ve tried it all

  17. kaitlyn says

    i recieved an ipod 5 for my birthday in november the camera both side were working fine then all of a sudden the front camera stopped and the shutter wont open and the back camera still workes fine…
    with my other apps like cam wow and stuff the back and front camera doesnt work ive even triend resetting/turning off and putting my finger over the lens but none of it works?

  18. ezroyboy says

    I tried every fix it solution on the web and nothing worked to restore my two cameras on a iPhone 4. The shutter would not open. I ordered the front and rear cameras from Amazon for less than $10.00 and when they arrived I did a 1/2 hour instal using youtube. Both cameras now work fine.

    • Matt says

      I just started having this problem on my iPhone 5. I closed the app and noticed my GPS arrow was on. I went to settings > privacy > location and disabled the camera access to GPS. It wasn’t fixed, but after restarting the phone it worked again.

  19. ezroyboy says

    If you have tried all the easy fix remedies such as restore and those listed in the apple toolbox, and nothing worked, then your last resort should be to replace the camera. It’s not a hard job but it does require some technical skill. The cameras are very cheap at Amazon. Good luck…..

  20. Silverback says

    I must have bigger issues. None of these “fixes” worked. The camera lens cover did allow me to back out of the camera function instead of getting stuck, but that’s it. Feedback welcome.

  21. GonzBoy says

    I had the same problem where the shutter was closed and would not open. The only thing that fixed it was updating to the latest software.

  22. The Average Customer says

    My camera works half of the time but the flip camera doesnt work at all
    it gives me a black screen and screws up my camera; then i have to reset and repeat
    Anyone else have this problem?

  23. Laura says

    I did all the steps and still the shutter won’t open when u have another way to open it please let me know thank u very much

  24. WHY!? says

    It doesn’t work both front and back and I am missing so many pictures of amazing memories because of it. Please please some one help!!!!!! It’s just the shutter screen and when it comes up its pitch black and wont take video or pictures (even the button to take it doesn’t work) …….. :(

  25. Guy That Was Confused says

    I’m not quite sure what I did. I turned it on sleep mode and when I went to the camera the shutter still wouldn’t open. I have a trip to Tennessee this week and it’s a youth retreat so I wanted to take tons of pictures. I just sat here and prayed and next thing I know I hear a “click” and something caused the camera shutter to open. Believe what you want but after hours of not having a camera and needing a miracle I’ll believe in it any day 😀

  26. Aimee says

    So yesterday my front camera stopped working. I dropped it yesterday and when I was on Skype later on they couldn’t see me. I tried to do those but nothing worked. I don’t want to replace my camera because I know I don’t have to. Can anyone help me?

  27. N.j, says

    My ipad2 camera isn’t working when I open it the black opening thing appears but stays that way I have tried pressing the home button and the power button but still it didn’t work I tried resetting the setting but it still didnt work but I don’t want to restore It I have important files and my parents will get mad at me if I restore it cause they have some important files on my ipad mostly my mom
    Please help me it’s been happening these past three days and i have been crying praying and hoping it will work please help

    • N.j, says

      My FaceTime works but when I try to turn to the back camera it freezes and I have to pause to get it to un freeze my photo booth works fine also but when I switch to the back camera the curtain just keeps going back and forth please help me

  28. LYN says

    I have an old iphone 8gb version 4.2.1(8c148) can i ask if how can i download apps i mean new apps because at this time everytime i go to appstore i cant download it says it needs ios 5… pplease help thanks!

  29. Jcy says

    I’m trying not to delete any thing by every time I try to switch to my front carma my shutter freezes -.-

  30. Daniel Young says

    Hello, I dropped my ipod 4th generation ios 6.1.3 into a lake. Ever since, all of the ipod functions work perfectly, except for the camera, I go to the camera app, and it either doesn’t open, or it does open, but the camera screen is black. I really need this fixed.

    Please respond ASAP.

    Daniel T. Young

      • Davew says

        Omigosh, exact same problem on exact same specs. Mine a lake.. .I dropped mine on the floor and cracked lots of the screen… no the camera just doesn’t open at all.
        Just finished a factory reset, no apple (pun). It’s really annoying!

        I was using it a month ago on a trip and both cameras worked great (AFTER the drop, mind you). Then I pulled out a spring and about 3 weeks later the camera just stopped. Any fixes?

  31. Elle Smith says

    Hi so one day as I was on vacation in Portugal my iPod touch 4th gen camera shutter didn’t open. Ever since then it hasn’t opened and when I open the camera app nothing happens it either shows the shutter closed or a black screen and it usually crashes. I need this to work! Please help me resolve my problem quickly as possible. Thanks!

  32. Diante Jackson says

    I dropped my iPhone 4S in a cup of water ever since then it has been perfectly fine except the camera sometimes it doesn’t open sometimes it does but when it does open it’s black

    Respond ASAP

  33. Jean says

    Same problem…my front camera is working..but my back camera is not working the shutter is closed and the screen is turning black…what should i do..pls…help me im suffering for almost a month..i cant take the picture of ma son..tell what yo do?plss reply me ASAP!

    • Edwin says

      Place your finger over the camera and hold it there once the app opens, this will make the shutter open. Just did this with my ipod touch =) Hope this helps.

  34. Zak says

    Hi I have got a new iPhone 5 and from some days the camera is not working neither the flash can some one tell me if they had or have a same problem and how how to fix it


  35. Briar Manley says

    Um I didn’t do any thing to my iPod but its camera would just stop working and when I would go on the camera app it would just have a black screen, please HELP ASAP ME BEFORE I THROW MY IPOD

  36. Jenny Abson says

    I have a top of the line otter box case and I have never dropped it. The camera just stoped working! It like the shutter is frozen. I wish the camera would work so when I snap I can take a pic of whoevers butt I need to shove this up.

  37. Elise says

    My iPhone fell in my pool and everything has been fine with it but my back camera. It just goes black. My front-facing camera still works but i want to know if there’s a way to fix this without replacing the whole phone.

  38. Freda says

    Please help me I dropped my iPod 4th g in water and I immediately put it in rice for 48 hours and everything is working fine but the camera please help me please. I have tried everything even resetting it nothing works.

  39. Juan velasquez says

    Hi all. after screen was replaced and following the resetting recommendations both cameras are working perfect. Thanks

  40. Joe says

    Eyy, dropped my iPod 4 in a bathtub and pulled it out right after it fell, camera works for a week, then stopped. And like 6 months later I accidentally opened Facetime, and my front camera worked, but shortly after both didn’t work at all. I’ve tried everything, and nothing. I’ve tried the finger thing, the different camera apps, and nothing works. So, could someone please assist me..? Or at least try to..?

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