iDevice errors always seem to happen at the most inconvenient of times! Over the weekend, I was enjoying a relaxing Sunday at home trolling the iTunes Store on my iPad looking up some good movies to watch later. As I was making a list of what I want to see or even possibly purchase, all of a sudden all I see is a white blank screen. What the heck?
Follow These Quick Tips When Your App Store’s Not Loading, Not Working, or Stuck on a Blank White Screen
- Check Apple’s System Status Site for any ongoing issues with Apple Servers
- Force restart the App Store App
- Restart or force restart your iPhone, iPad, or iPod
- Sign out and back into the iTunes & App Store via Settings or the App Store App
- Refresh the App Store and clear its cache
- Change your device’s date and time settings
- Switch to Cellular Data or try a different WiFi network
- Reset your network’s settings
- Use a different DNS provider such as Google’s Public DNS
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- App Store: “An unknown error has occurred”; can’t connect to the App Store
- App Store problems? How to fix your issues
- Music App Stuck on the Lock Screen? How To Fix It Now
I quickly learned that I am not alone.
Several readers report this exact same error of the App Store (and sometimes the iTunes Store) not working on their iPhones, iPads, or iPods.
When they tap one of the tab at the bottom, all they see is a blank page!
Nothing loads when they want to use the App Store on an iPad or iPhone. No matter what you do your App Store shows a blank white screen–and it’s very frustrating!
Several people also report that this problem started after they updated to the latest version of iOS.
But for others, the App Store was working fine until, without warning or apparent cause, the App Store or iTunes Store just goes blank. Some report they receive the error message “cannot connect to the app store.” Ugh…
- Tips to Load Your App Store Faster on iPhones and iDevices
- App Store Blank on macOS
- macOS App Store Updates Not Showing
- Getting Ghost Updates on macOS App Store?
Check Apple System Status Page
It’s not you; it’s Apple! Like any technology, Apple system goes down time to time, whether for maintenance or unexpectedly. It happens. It’s part of life.
So before you unnecessarily perform a bunch of troubleshooting steps, check Apple’s System Status page. Make sure there aren’t any problems with the App Store.
Problems are denoted in yellow and list any issues. To learn more, tap on the problem for an update window of the latest information.
Before You Do Anything, Try This–Restart!
Restart An Individual App
How to restart
- On an iPad with no Home Button and iPhones X or later: press and hold the Side/Top/Power button and either volume button until the slider appears
- On an iPad or iPhone with a Home Button and iPod Touch: press and hold the Side/Top/Power button until the slider appears
- Drag the slider to turn the device off and after the device turns off, press and hold that Side/Top/Power button again until you see the Apple Logo
- With iOS 11 and above, restart using Settings > General > Shut Down
If restarting didn’t work, try a forced reboot on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. Perform this only if your iDevice and the iTunes or App Store is still not responding.
How to force restart
- On an iPhone X Series and above, newer iPad model, iPhone 8, or iPhone 8 Plus: Press and quickly release the Volume Up button. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button. Then, press and hold the Side button until you see the Apple logo
- On an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus: Press and hold both the Side and Volume Down buttons for at least 10 seconds, until you see the Apple logo
- On an iPhone 6s and earlier, older iPad, or iPod touch: Press and hold both the Home and the Top (or Side) buttons for at least 10 seconds, until you see the Apple logo
What To Do When The App Store’s Not Working and Showing a Blank Page
Sign Out and then back INTO Your App Store’s Apple ID
- Go to Settings> iTunes & App Store> Tap your Apple ID and select Sign Out
- Wait 10-20 seconds and sign back into your account with your Apple ID
- Alternatively, Open Settings > iTunes & App Store
- Tap on Apple ID and sign out
- Now try and open your App Store
- Wait a bit for content to load–be patient
- Once content loads, tap the profile icon and sign in with your Apple ID
- For older iOS, go to the Purchases section and Sign In
Force Refresh the App Store and Clear Its Cache (for iOS 12 and below)
- For iOS 13+ and iPadOS, force close (restart) the app store app and relaunch it
- For older iOS (12 and below), repeatedly tap the App Store Updates button (available in older iOS only) or any of the tab icons at the bottom. All you have to do is look at the bottom menu, pick a tab, and then tap on it ten times or even more. This eventually deletes the cache from your App Store.
- Readers report this works, but sometimes you need to tap it upwards of 25 times or even more!
- Select the Updates tab and swipe down from the middle of the screen until you see the spinning connections wheel
Update Date and Time Settings
- Tap Settings > General > Date and Time > Set Automatically > Off. Wait 10-20 second and turn it back ON
- If that doesn’t work, turn Set Automatically OFF and then manually set the date one year ahead
- Then try to access the App Store
If you see the message “cannot connect”
- Go back and update the Date & Time to the actual settings by entering it manually or toggling Set Automatically ON
- Then reopen the App Store
Switch Your Internet Connection
- If using WiFi, toggle it off and try Cellular or vice-versa (use WiFi and turn off Cellular)
- Use a different WiFi network or try a WiFi network somewhere else, like your neighbors or a nearby coffee shop
- Go to Settings > Mobile or Cellular > and turn Mobile/Cellular Data OFF
- Wait 10-20 seconds and then switch it back ON
- Now scroll down to Use Mobile/Cellular Data For and toggle App Store ON if it’s off
- If App Store is already toggled ON, toggle it OFF and wait 10-20 seconds and toggle the App Store back ON
- See if your App Store is now working normally, i.e., the blank screen has disappeared
Have a Monthly Data Limit?
If your cellular plan includes a maximum limit and you are close or exceeded that limit, you may have just identified the problem.
Try adding more data onto your plan and see if that makes a difference.
Reset Your Network
- Try Resetting. Go to Settings > General> Reset> Reset All Settings. This does not delete any of your data.
Use a Different DNS
- Try changing your DNS settings to Google’s open DNS
- Go to Settings > WiFi > and tap your current WiFi network
- Select the DNS field and enter these DNS servers; 126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52 (Google’s Public DNS)
For more DNS options, see this article.
Change the Device’s Language
- Tap Settings > General > Language & Region > iPhone Language
- Tap Other Languages
- Pick any language other than your current. If possible, try and choose any other second language you already know or are familiar with
- Once the new language downloads, check if the App Store or iTunes Store works
- If everything’s good to go, return to Settings > General > Language & Region and change the language back to your original
- Then delete that second language, if desired
Yup, this is definitely a weird one–but it seems to work. Just remember that when you modify the language, first check the App Store, and only then change the language back to what it was originally.
Ask Friends To Help
A reader let us know that this one worked for him–strange but true.
Just ask a friend, co-worker, family member, or pretty much anyone you know to send you a link via SMS to any app in the App Store.
For whatever reason, the app store reappears normally!
No Time? Check Out Our Step-by-Step Video
There are a lot of reasons why the App Store stops working. Hopefully, one of the tips listed above in the article or video helped you out.
If something else worked for you, let us know! We love paying it forward and adding it to our Reader Tips section.
- I had the same problem on my Mac Pro. Repeatedly clicking the “updates” tab fixed the problem
- Sign out of your Apple ID by tapping Settings > iTunes & App Store, tap your Apple ID and select “Sign Out.” Wait one minute and sign back in by reentering your Apple ID and password
- Turned off the phone and wait for a minute and turn back on. Then, log out of your Apple ID from Settings > Apple ID Account Management > Sign Out. Then sign back in. If you get an error message, wait a few minutes and try logging in again. You might need to try logging in a few times. Once logged in, close the App Store App if open and then open it again and see if your issue resolves and you can see the Search Bar, all the categories, etc.
- Just turn off both of your internet connections–WiFi and Cellular Data. The try to load the App Store. You get the error that your internet connection is lost and then close the App Store app. Reconnect the internet by turning both WiFi and Cellular Data ON. Then load the App Store again. Worked for me!
- Toggle ON Airplane Mode, then try to open the app store. You get an error message but ignore it! Just shut down your App Store app and then open it again straight away. Then turn off airplane mode and within 30 seconds the App Store re-populated.
- Tap on any one of the toolbar buttons (Featured, Search, Updates, etc.) on the bottom of the screen rapidly ten times. It sounds counter-intuitive, but it refreshes the App Store and should solve your problem.
Obsessed with tech since the early arrival of A/UX on Apple, Sudz (SK) is responsible for the original editorial direction of AppleToolBox. He is based out of Los Angeles, CA.
Sudz specializes in covering all things macOS, having reviewed dozens of OS X and macOS developments over the years.
In a former life, Sudz worked helping Fortune 100 companies with their technology and business transformation aspirations.