iOS 16 AirDrop Not Working? Stuck On Waiting? (Fix!)

iOS 16 AirDrop not working

iOS 16 AirDrop not working

Are you facing iOS 16 AirDrop problems? iPhone 14 and older models show Waiting status or can’t even detect the other iPhone, when you try to send a file to a contact? Transfer isn’t even starting because the other end isn’t prompted to accept the airdrop?

iOS 16 AirDrop Problems

This issue has been reported to us by Asher:

“iphone 14 pro max can’t airdrop to iphone 14 pro or any other iphone. Is this known?”

More similar reports are also available on the MacRumors forums where the issue seems to be linked to iPhone 14 models :

“…They were trying to AirDrop me the menu because my 14 Pro Max wasn’t scanning the QR code menu but my name wouldn’t even pop up for them to send me anything.”

and here:

“The same happened to me. My contacts doesn’t seem to appear in the people that I know but under others instead.”

However, there are many others that complain about iOS 16 AirDrop not working on iPhone 13, 12 and older models!

How To Fix iOS 16 AirDrop Not Working

Most likely, Apple will have to release a software update, to patch all these day-one iOS 16 issues. Until then here are a few workarounds that help out.

1. Set AirDrop To Everyone

A workaround requires you to modify AirDrop settings. Both pairing iPhones have to be set to accept AirDrop transfers from anyone, without restricting the feature to Contacts only.

Apparently, iOS 16 isn’t able to pinpoint if a transfer request is coming from a contact or not an AirDrop remains stuck on ‘Waiting’.
ios 16 airdrop settings

  • Open Control Center (Swipe-down from the top-right corner of the screen).
  • Touch & hold the Bluetooth icon to expand the menu.
  • Touch & hold the AirDrop icon to unveil the settings.
  • Select Everyone.
  • Fact: The downside of this workaround is that your iPhone will show up as available for AirDrop to anyone else that’s scanning your area! Check carefully the name of the the device that you plan to accept files from!

2. Check Contact Settings

The issue might only affect those that recently transferred from a physical SIM to an eSIM plan. We’ve recently reported about the Last Line No Longer Available error.

Same fixe might work in case of iOS 16 AirDrop issues. If an entry is set to be contacted using a line that’s not available anymore, it might not be recognized as a Contact and thus not show up in the AirDrop menu. Here is what to do:

  • Open Contacts app and search for the person that you’re trying to AirDrop with.
  • If you spot the Last Called Line Not Available info, tap it an change it to your current phone line.
  • Credits: Fix mentioned by Mac56

3. Other Fixes For AirDrop Issues

If AirDrop is still glitching out you can also apply some standard troubleshooting options like:
Turn Airplane Mode On and back Off.
Force restart both devices involved in the transfer: iPhones, iPads or Macs.

Have you managed to fix AirDrop not working between iPhones in iOS 16? Do you have a better solution? Share your feedback in the comments!

Related: For more day-one iOS 16 bugs and their available workarounds please check our extended review available here.