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Can Apple Unlock My iPhone? 3 Surprising Facts (2023)

Can Apple Unlock My Iphone

Forgetting your passcode is a stressful situation.

Especially when you start seeing “iPhone is disabled” with a timer on your screen. 

This makes you wonder if Apple can unlock your iOS device on your behalf.

So, let me help you replace your curiosity with answers. 

Continue reading to find out:

  • Who can unlock your iPhone. 
  • Whether or not Apple can unlock your iOS device.
  • 3 surprising facts about Apple unlocking your iPhone.
  • And this is just the beginning… 

Can Apple unlock my iPhone?

Apple can’t unlock your iPhone. The brand doesn’t have the tools necessary to do this. And it’s not planning to offer this service to its customers. That’s because Apple prioritizes the privacy of its users. 

Can Apple unlock my iPhone passcode?

Apple can’t unlock your iPhone passcode.

That’s because, as mentioned…

The brand gives high importance to the rights and privacy of its customers. 

“But Apple made the iPhones. How come it can’t unlock them?”

Well, it all comes down to how the brand designed these devices.

And you’re in for a ride. 

Because I’m going to talk about…

3 reasons why Apple can’t unlock your iPhone 

#1: iPhones have 6-digit passcodes

Before iOS 9 was released, iPhones used to have 4-digit passcodes. 

And although these were already secured, with 10,000 possible combinations…

Apple took the extra mile to make your iPhone a lot safer. And that’s with the use of 6-digit passcodes. 

Now, adding 2 numbers doesn’t seem much.

But this small tweak widened the number of passcode combinations you can use to 1 million.

And this big value makes it extremely hard for anyone to unlock your iPhone by luck.

“But don’t big companies have software that can generate thousands of passcodes at once?”

Those exist, of course. 

However, with iPhones, with or without software, anyone only has…

#2: 10 unsuccessful passcode attempts

10 tries. That’s all anyone gets if they want to unlock iPhones.

And even Apple itself isn’t an exception. 

To elaborate… 

Here’s what happens if you use the wrong passcode multiple times
Number of wrong attemptsHow long until you can try again
51 minute
65 minutes
715 minutes
8 or 91 hour
10Never (connect your phone to iTunes)

After knowing this, many have wondered:

“But can’t Apple just bypass the passcode attempts limit?”

Well, Apple doesn’t have the code to do this. 

And it doesn’t want to create a master key to unlock iPhones anytime soon.

That’s because… 

#3: The brand doesn’t want to threaten data security

According to Apple, once it creates a key that opens any iPhone…

The data of all Apple mobile device users will be at risk. 

That’s because once this technique is created… 

Others would mimic Apple’s code. And eventually cause huge privacy trouble for all devices. 

And the brand doesn’t want to take this risk.

Fun fact: It’s been over a decade since the first iPhone was made. But Apple has never unlocked a user’s mobile device.

Recommended reading: (13 Fixes) How To Stop iPhone From Overheating [Guide]

Who can unlock my iPhone?

Only those who know your passcode can unlock your iPhone. 

Because, as stated, it’s impossible to guess your iPhone’s passcode. And Apple also can’t unlock your phone. 

But don’t worry. Even if your iOS device is locked, you can still use it.


By putting your iPhone in recovery mode. Or the state where you erase everything from your iOS device, including its passcode. 

Note: This mode is similar to doing a factory reset. Because it’ll also delete your phone’s current data and information. However, you won’t need to input your credentials to start recovery mode. 

You might also want to know: iPhone XR Left Speaker Not Working (How To Fix It)

Can the Apple store help me reset my iPhone?

The Apple store can help you reset your iPhone. But you can also do this process yourself. 

See, it only takes less than 5 minutes to…

Reset a locked iPhone through recovery mode:

Step 1: Turn ON your Mac or PC

It’s necessary to have one of these devices for this process.

So, if you don’t have them, skip the steps and dial Apple’s number, which I attached below instead. 

Step 2: Turn OFF your iPhone

Turn Off Your Iphone
iPhone 8 and newer:

Press and hold the volume down and power buttons simultaneously.

Slide the power slider that appears on your screen to the right. 

iPhone 6-7

Long-press the side/power button on your phone.

Drag the power slider on your screen to the right. 

Step 3: Put your mobile device in recovery mode

First, know the correct button to press later
iPhone 8 and newerSide/Power
iPhone 7/7+Volume down
iPhone SE/6SHome

Then, just follow these steps:

  1. Plug your iPhone’s cord into your Mac/computer.
  2. Bring your mobile device near the cable’s connector (don’t plug it in yet).
  3. Press and hold the correct button on your iPhone.
  4. Immediately plug your device into your computer without letting go.
  5. Keep holding the button.
  6. Let go when the Recovery mode screen appears on your phone. 

Note: In step 6, you should see a logo of a laptop and a charging cable. 

But of course, as mentioned…

The Apple store can also do this reset process on your behalf if you:

  • Don’t have a PC/Mac.
  • Can’t get these steps to work. 
  • Just don’t want to do it yourself. 

That said, feel free to contact the brand by calling 1-800-275-2273. 

Or you may also visit a local Apple store so the brand’s representatives can help you in person. 

Apple unlocking iPhones – 3 surprising facts

#1: Apple once refused to unlock an iPhone for the FBI

When the brand swore to protect your data, it meant every word of its promise. 

So, rest assured that even if the government asks the brand to open your iPhone…

Your information will be safe inside your device. 

See, way back in 2016…

There was a huge legal dispute between the FBI and Apple. 

Because the former wanted help from the latter to access a shooter’s iPhone.

However, the brand was firm on its decision not to unlock the mobile device. Because Apple didn’t want to set a dangerous precedent.

In other words, the brand knew that if it agreed to help this one time…

The government may abuse its power by repeatedly asking for the same favor in the future. 

And Apple knew that once it cooperates, there’s no turning back.

Not just for the brand. But for other tech-related companies as well. 

Interested in knowing more about the FBI VS Apple’s privacy fight? Watch this video: 

#2: Unlocking your phone deletes your data

I already briefly mentioned this earlier.

But I think it’s crucial to remember that if you ask Apple to unlock your phone…

You’ll also delete every data from your device. 

This safety mechanism ensures that…

Anyone who doesn’t know your passcode also can’t access your information.

“Is there a way to unlock my phone without deleting my data?”

Well, some independent hackers or software geeks may offer this service.

But I highly recommend avoiding their help.

That’s because, most of the time, they bring more harm than good to your device.

And you’ll risk exposing your data and information to the wrong people. 

#3: “Unlocking your iPhone” has 2 different meanings

You’ll find several articles from Apple saying that:

“Only your network provider can unlock your phone.”

But this doesn’t mean your courier can bypass your passcode for you.

See, unlocking a phone also means allowing your iPhone to use other network providers. 

Because new phones are usually locked. Or they’re only stuck to using a single courier. 

So, if you ever visit a tech store and ask if it can unlock iPhones…

Make sure to clarify which type of unlocking you need.

Bonus: iOS users can let family members access their data after death

In 2022, Apple added a Legacy Contact feature.

And this allows iOS users to allow certain individuals to access their data after death. 

To use this feature, the family member of the deceased iOS user would need the following:

  • Legacy contact access key.
  • The deceased’s death certificate. 

However, even in this scenario… 

Apple still won’t unlock the iPhone of the person who died. 

Rather, it’d simply let the legacy contact access the deceased’s data stored in the cloud like their:

  • Files. 
  • Notes. 
  • Photos.
  • Messages.

Note: A legacy contact won’t be able to access payment information or passwords.