iOS 16 Tips

iPhone Focus Mode Not Working? All You Should Know in iOS 16/17

by Jenefey Aaron   Updated on 2023-09-01 / Update for  iOS 16

iPhone Focus Mode was introduced in iOS 15 and gets much improved in iOS 16 with many new features. However, it is noted that not all people know how to use it properly and complain about iPhone Focus mode not working. So lets see how to use focus mode on your iPhone and look at ways to solve the issue.

Part 1: How to Turn on Focus Mode in 3 Ways

First of all, in iOS 16/17, we can turn on Focus Mode on our iPhone in 3 different ways including enabling it from Lock screen, Control center or the settings.

  • 1. The newest iOS 16 Lock Screen.
    You can link a specific iOS 16 lock screen to a focus mode profile, and whenever you switch to that lock screen, that iPhone Focus mode is turned on.
    Long press the lock screen to start customization and you will see the Focus link.

    focus lock screen ios 16
  • 2. Control Center
    Swipe down to access the control center. Tap on the Focus button to turn it on. Long press it to select other modes you want.

  • 3. Turn on in Settings
    Open Settings and locate Focus. Customize and set your focus settings here.

Part 2: Why iPhone Focus Not Working iOS 16

There could be a lot of reasons as to why the iPhone focus mode is not working. Most of these are related to improper settings and stuff. Let’s look at what we list as potential causes.

  • Focus mode schedule is improperly set.
  • You have enabled repeated calls, and whitelist apps or notifications.
  • Share Across device capability may be turned on in Focus Mode.
  • The iOS 16 software needs to be updated to get rid of bugs and problems.

Part 3: How to Fix iPhone Focus Mode Not Working

Here comes the main question. As for iPhone focus mode not working, how do we fix it? Well, you are not the only one asking for it. Let’s look at 7 potential ways to solve this problem.

1. Stop Sharing Focus Across Devices

The first reason for iPhone Focus mode not working is that Sharing Across Device cause some sort of problem. This feature means that the Focus mode will be syncing and enabling at the same time on any devices usign the same iCloud account. You can just turn it off.

  • Open Settings and navigate to Focus. Tap on the toggle of Share Across Devices to turn it off.
  • On the other hand, if your problem is that Share Across Devices is greyed out, check if you have signed out of iCloud account.

    focus share across devices

2. Check Different Focus Settings

There is a lot of customization possible for every person’s specific needs. The next important thing is to check different focus settings when you still receive notifications and phone calls with a Focus mode on.

  • Turn off Focus Status which can share that you have notifications silenced.
  • Remove people and apps from Allow Notifications.
  • Turn off Allow Repeated Calls. If someone is trying to reach you constantly, their call can get through in a Focus mode.
  • Do not Allow Time Sensitive Notifications.
  • Toggle off Silenced Notifications to Show on Lock screen.

    focus notifications and calls settings
  • Check if the Focus mode is automatically turned on in the schedule time you set.

3. Set Focus Mode again

If you do not want to go through all these settings, which may take a few minutes, you can set it again or create a new focus mode especailly when it is a personal mode. This is the easiest way to solve Focus mode is not working on your iPhone.

4. Restart iPhone

You could just restart your iPhone if Focus mode is not working properly. It may seem like an easy thing, but in truth, restarting your phone fixes a lot of problems like crashing, stucking, or apps not working. And we recommend a force restart.

5. Reset All Settings

Besides restarting, you could also resort to resetting all settings. It will reset all settings to default on your iPhone including the focus mode you set and other wrong settings you do not know. And no data will be lost.

  • Open Settings, go to General > Transfer or Reset iPhone > Reset > Reset All Settings.

    reset all settings
  • Enter your iPhone passcode and let the process finish. After that, set all the settings all over again.

6. Update Software

Like we have said above, you could also look for any pending software updates. Many times, software updates fix a lot of bugs like iPhone Focuse mode not working and can make your life easier.

7. Fix System Problems by ReiBoot with No Data Loss

iPhone is a great device, but there are many system problems every now and then, which are reported by iPhone users. You can fix such system problems like iPhone Focus not working by using Tenorshare ReiBoot. All you need to do is use the standard repair so there will be no data loss.

  • First of all, download and launch ReiBoot on your computer. Click Start to start the process.

    fix ios problem - launch reiboot
  • Connect your iPhone with the computer via a lightening cable. Select “Standard Repair” to go on.

    fix ios problem - standard repair
  • Then download the firmware package, which may take a while to download. Make sure a great internet connection.

    fix ios problem - download firmware package
  • Once the download is completed, click on “Start Standard Repair”.

    fix ios problem - start standard repair
  • Wait for ReiBoot to finish. Your iPhone will restart in a few minutes, and then see if the problem gets fixed.

    fix ios problem - repair successfully


Focus mode helps one work, drive, study or rest by blocking out bothering things and focus on important stuff. However, if iPhone focus mode not working, you can try out the above methods, one of which will surely work for you. And the ultimate but feasible method is Tenorshare ReiBoot.