Do you like adventure like camping and hiking, or do you love visiting parks and remote places? Or do you want to drive to a friend’s apartment or an event and need directions? iPhone’s built-in compass helps you navigate unfamiliar places and get directions in real time. However, sometimes you may find that the Compass app is not working on your iPhone, leaving you feeling lost and frustrated.

To avoid that, we are going to tell you different ways to fix iPhone compass not working issue iOS 16.

1. Force close the Compass app and reopen it.

The first thing you may want to do when your iPhone’s compass fails is to force quit the app and restart it. This can help recalibrate the sensor and fix any temporary glitches.

To force stop the app, swipe up on the Compass app in the app drawer.

Force close WhatsApp and restart

After a few seconds, reopen the Compass app to check if it is working properly.

2. Enable compass calibration

Compass calibration is another reason why the iPhone compass is not working properly. Enabling compass calibration will allow your iPhone to use a combination of GPS, Wi-Fi, and motion sensors to improve compass accuracy. To fix it, follow these simple steps

  1. Go to Settings -> Privacy and Security -> Location Services.

    Click on

  2. Scroll down and click on System Services.
  3. Activate the compass calibration.

    Activate the compass calibration

3. Update iOS to the latest version

If your iPhone software is outdated, it can lead to compass problems. You can fix this by updating iOS to the latest version.

  1. Go to Settings → General → Software Update.
  2. Click Download and Install if an update is available.

    Go to Settings, General, Software Update, download and install it.

4. Check for interference

Since the iPhone compass uses magnetic sensors, any interference from magnetic fields can cause the compass to malfunction.

To remedy this, avoid any potential source of magnetic interference, including metal objects or other electronic devices.

5. Disable/enable location services

Sometimes, all you need to fix an iPhone compass not working is to turn Location Services off and then on. This will allow you to update your iPhone’s location. It can be so easy!

  1. Go to Settings -> Privacy and Security -> Location Services.
  2. Disable location service. Wait a few seconds and then turn it on.

    Enable Location Services on iPhone

6. Disable True North

True North is an iPhone feature that lets you navigate in the right direction. True North allows your iPhone’s compass to always point to Earth’s magnetic field by default.

However, this feature isn’t always necessary in every situation, especially if you’re in areas with strong magnetic interference or near certain electronic devices. If your compass does not work in these situations, you can disable True North.

  1. Go to Settings → Compass.
  2. Then turn off Use True North.

    Disable True North on iPhone

  3. Reopen the Compass app to see if it works now.

7. Shake or tap your iPhone

If you’re having trouble with your iPhone’s compass, one trick you can try is tapping or shaking your iPhone. Yes! You read it correctly. Strange as it may sound, but it provides a medium blow to the device and unfreezes the compass.

However, this method only works for iPhone X and later models. You can try it out by following these simple steps:

  1. Launch the compass app.
  2. Firmly shake your iPhone while holding it firmly.
  3. Wait a few minutes and restart the Compass app to see if it works.

8. Restart your iPhone

Restarting your iPhone is a common and easy way to fix minor system glitches, including compass issues. When apps suddenly stop working due to crashes, the first thing you can try is to close the app and restart your iPhone. This can help clean up your iPhone’s RAM and resolve other possible issues causing the compass to get stuck.

9. Reset location data

Resetting your location data is usually another quick fix to get your iPhone compass working again. This will help you reset all location and privacy settings to their default state.

However, there is one problem with this. It removes all location and privacy data from your iPhone. So, before resetting your location data, make sure that the location data is the real culprit of the problem, and that you have tried other previous fixes suggested earlier. You can also back up your location to iCloud or your computer to avoid data loss.

  1. Go to Settings → General → Move or Reset iPhone.
  2. Choose Reset → Reset location & privacy.

    Reset location and privacy on iPhone

  3. Now open the Compass app again to make sure it is working properly.

If you’ve tried all the solutions above and your iPhone compass still isn’t working, you may need to contact Apple Support. They can help you diagnose and fix the problem.

11. Use a third party compass app

If none of the above solutions work, you can try a third-party compass app. Some third-party compass apps offer some pretty cool features, including advanced maps, advanced overlays, and customization options beyond what Apple’s built-in app provides. In addition, some are useful for specific purposes such as hiking and professional commuting.

However, it is important to be careful about your privacy. So choose a reliable compass app.

dont waste!

It is not uncommon to encounter issues with the Compass app on iPhone and they can be easily fixed by following the solutions in this post. Remember to take precautionary measures like removing magnetic items near your iPhone.

Read more:

  • Best GPS Navigation Apps for iPhone
  • Best travel apps for iPhone and iPad
  • How to change GPS location on iPhone

Author profile

Idowu website

Idowu is a technical writer and software engineer who is passionate about filling knowledge gaps about consumer software, including all things iPhone. Well, when he’s not reading and learning new things, you’ll find Idowu losing gamely on a solid chessboard or almost on Lichess.