8 Ways to Fix iPhone Stuck on Downloading Messages from iCloud

Has your iPhone XS/XR/11/12 been showing "Downloading messages from iCloud" for hours? This problem is often caused by a connectivity issue when your device is unable to connect to the internet or the Wi-Fi or cellular network you are using is not strong enough. The following are just some of the solutions you can try to fix this issue.

1. Change to Another Wi-Fi

Certain iCloud processes require a very strong internet connection. So, if you encounter this problem or any other iCloud related problems, it is a good idea to check the Wi-Fi network you are using, In fact, we recommend that you switch to another Wi-Fi network whose connection is stronger. If you do this and the iPhone is still stuck on downloading messages from iCloud, try our next solution.

change wifi connection

2. Force Quit Messages App

If you can't switch to another Wi-Fi connection or your Wi-Fi is strong enough, you may want to try to force quit the messages app. Here's how to do it:

Step 1: Double tap on the Home button to open the app switcher. Locate the Messages app.

Step 2: Swipe up to remove it.

force quit app

If you are using an iPhone X or later, you can access the app switcher by swiping half-up from the bottom of the screen. Tap on the Messages app once you've found it and when a red circle appears, tap on it to close the app.

3. Plug out of iPhone

If this problem appears when you are charging your device, we recommend unplugging the device from the charger. If the iPhone is still stuck on downloading messages from iCloud even after unplugging it, try the next solution.

plug out of iphone

4. Check the Apple System Status

To download messages from iCloud, you will need to communicate with the Apple Servers. If the Apple system is down, when Apple is carrying out maintenance on the servers, your device will not be able to communicate the Apple servers which can cause this problem and others. Therefore, you may want to check if the Apple System is "Available" for iCloud backup. If it is not, all you have to do is to try again in a few hours.

5. Force Restart iPhone

The other simple troubleshooting solution you may want to try is a force restart. This is a good solution since it can easily refresh the device and eliminate any settings that could be causing the downloading message from iCloud issue. To force restart the device, use the following procedures:

  • For the iPhone 6 and earlier models: Hold down the Home and Power buttons the same time until you see the Apple Logo on the screen.

  • For the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus: Hold down the Power and Volume Down buttons until the Apple logo appears.

  • For the iPhone 8 series and iPhone X/11/12: press and then quickly release the Volume Up button and then do the same with the Volume Down button. Now press and hold the power button until the Apple Logo shows up.

turn off and turn on iphone

6. Turn Off Messages from iCloud Settings

If the problem still persists, you should consider turning off iMessages from iCloud to stop it. Follow these simple steps to do it:

Step 1: Open the Settings on your iPhone and tap on your Apple ID.

Step 2: Tap on iCloud and then locate Message.

Step 3: Toggle the switch to turn it off. This will usually fix the problem since it stops downloading messages from iCloud.

turn on messages in icloud

7. Reset Network Settings

To work correctly, iCloud needs a good internet connection, if you suspect that your connection is the problem, you may want to reset the network settings.

To do that, go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings and enter your passcode. Now reconnect to your Wi-Fi networks and to see if the problem is gone.

reset network settings

8. Alternative Way to Download Messages from iCloud

If all else fails, you should consider using an alternative way to download messages from iCloud. With a tool like FoneGeek iPhone Data Recovery (iOS 14/13 supported), you can easily and very quickly access your iCloud account and download all the messages on the account. This data recovery program can be used to selectively recover data from your iCloud backup without restoring the device system. This capability makes it the ideal tool to extract the messages from iCloud.


To use FoneGeek iPhone Data Recovery to download the messages from iCloud, download and install this tool on your computer and then follow these simple steps:

Step 1: Launch the program and then click on "Recover from iCloud Backup" on the left and click "Start" to begin.

sign in icloud

Step 2: Sign in to iCloud using your iCloud credentials. You should see a list of all the backup files in that iCloud account. Select the file with the messages you want to download and then click "Next" to continue.

select icloud backup

Step 3: Select "Messages" as the type of data you would like the program to scan for (this will save a lot of time) and then click "Scan". Wait for iPhone Data Recovery to scan the backup file for your messages.

select icloud file types

Step 4: When the scanning process is complete, all the messages in that backup file will be listed in the next window. Select the messages you would like to download and then click on "Recover" to save them to your computer. You can also choose to upload them to the device.

preview photos icloud

When you see the "downloading messages from iCloud" error that won't go away, the solutions above can help. Choose one that is compatible with your particular situation. Let us know if you are able to fix the problem in the comments section. Your questions and comments are also welcome.


By Fay J. Melton

Posted on Aug 08, 2019, 23:59:56

Fay J. Melton has explored the area of technology and software for more than 5 years and he is enthusiastic about helping users solve various technology issues.