Why didn’t my music restore on my new iPhone?

Apple Music subscribers often run into an issue where their music library does not automatically restore on a new iPhone. This can be frustrating, as people expect their music collection to seamlessly transfer to a new device. There are several potential reasons why music may not restore on a new iPhone.

This article will outline some troubleshooting steps to help get your music library back up and running on your new iPhone. We will cover checking iCloud backups, updating iOS software, using iTunes to transfer music, adjusting Music app sync settings, authorizing computers, and restarting devices. With some dedicated troubleshooting, you should be able to restore your Apple Music collection on your new iPhone.

Check iCloud Backup

It’s important to make sure your iCloud backup is up-to-date before getting a new iPhone. The iCloud backup contains a copy of your data and settings that can be transferred to a new device during setup. This includes your photos, messages, contacts, calendar events, device settings and more. If your latest iCloud backup does not contain your full music library, this can explain why your music did not automatically restore on your new iPhone.

To check that your iCloud backup is current, go to Settings > [Your Name] > iCloud > iCloud Backup on your old iPhone. Make sure that iCloud Backup is turned on and that the date of the “Last Backup” is recent. You can also check that “Music” is toggled on under the list of apps being backed up by iCloud. If your last backup was not recent or music is not enabled, tap “Back Up Now” to create a fresh iCloud backup before setting up your new iPhone. This will give your new device the best chance of transferring your full music library during setup.

According to Apple’s iPhone user guide, iCloud can automatically back up your iPhone daily when connected to power, Wi-Fi and with the screen locked. So keeping your old iPhone regularly charged and connected to Wi-Fi will allow iCloud to maintain an up-to-date backup.

Update to Latest iOS

One reason your music may not have restored properly on your new iPhone is if you are not running the latest iOS version on your devices. Apple makes continual software updates to fix bugs and improve performance. Updating to the newest iOS version ensures compatibility between your old and new iPhone when transferring data.

On your new iPhone, go to Settings > General > Software Update to download and install the latest iOS version. On your old iPhone, you should also update to the newest iOS before attempting to transfer your music library again. Keeping both devices updated provides the best chance of a smooth transition.

According to Apple’s support article If songs are missing from your music library after you turn off iCloud Music Library, running older iOS versions can sometimes cause data transfer issues. Upgrading provides important bug fixes and optimizations that improve syncing between devices.

Use iTunes to Transfer

One way to transfer your music library from an old iPhone to a new iPhone is by using iTunes on your computer. Here are the steps:

  1. Connect both your old and new iPhones to your computer using the USB cables.
  2. Open iTunes on your computer. iTunes will detect both devices.
  3. In iTunes, click on your old iPhone under the Devices section. This loads the content and info from your old device.
  4. Next, go to the Music section and select all the songs/albums you want to transfer. You can Ctrl+Click to select multiple items.
  5. With the music selected, right click and choose “Transfer Purchases from [Old iPhone]”.
  6. iTunes will copy the music files to your iTunes library and your new iPhone.
  7. You can double check by clicking on your new iPhone and verifying the music is there under the Music section.

This process allows you to selectively transfer just your music library without overriding any existing apps or data on your new iPhone. Make sure to authorize the computers you use iTunes on to avoid any syncing issues.

Check Music App Sync Settings

One common reason for music not transferring to a new iPhone is that the Music app sync settings are not enabled. To check this on your iPhone:

1. Open the Settings app.

2. Tap on Music.

3. Look for the “Sync Library” option and make sure it is toggled on. This allows your music library to sync across devices.

If “Sync Library” is already enabled, try turning it off, closing the Music app, then turning Sync Library back on. Also make sure you are signed into the same Apple ID on both devices.

You can also check in iTunes on your computer. Go to Edit > Preferences > Devices and make sure “Sync Music” is checked. This ensures music is set to sync from your iTunes library to your iPhone.

Toggling the sync settings off and back on again may help trigger your music library to fully transfer to the new device.

Authorize Computer in iTunes

One important step is to authorize your new computer in iTunes to access your purchased music library. When you authorize a computer, it allows that specific machine to play songs, movies, apps, and more from your iTunes account (Source). Without proper authorization, you may get errors when trying to play media, even if you are logged into your Apple ID.

To authorize a computer, open the iTunes app and go to Account > Authorizations. Click “Authorize This Computer” and enter your Apple ID password if prompted. This links your iTunes account to that device. It is required in order to download previous purchases and access subscription content like Apple Music across your authorized devices.

Authorizing the computer is an important troubleshooting step if your music library has not been restored properly. It ensures full iTunes access and content availability for that machine. If you run into issues playing music, movies or other media after setting up a new device, authorizing the computer often resolves it.

Restart Devices

Sometimes simply restarting both the old iPhone and new iPhone can help resolve issues transferring music libraries. Restarting clears out any software glitches and resets the devices. According to Apple Support, you can force restart an unresponsive iPhone by pressing and quickly releasing the Volume Up button, then pressing and quickly releasing the Volume Down button, then pressing and holding the Side button until the Apple logo appears.

After restarting both devices, try transferring the music again through iTunes or iCloud Music Library. Restarting refreshes the connection and often fixes software issues that were preventing a successful transfer. If the music library still does not transfer correctly, move on to troubleshooting other potential causes.

Disable iCloud Music Library

One potential workaround is to temporarily disable iCloud Music Library on your iPhone. iCloud Music Library allows you to access your Apple Music library from all your devices, but sometimes this syncing process can cause music to disappear.

To disable iCloud Music Library, go to Settings > Music and toggle off the “iCloud Music Library” option. Wait a few minutes, then turn it back on. This forces your iPhone to re-sync your music library from the cloud. According to Apple (source), this often resolves missing songs that failed to download properly the first time.

Disabling iCloud Music Library essentially resets your music app and prompts a fresh sync from Apple’s servers. So after you re-enable it, your iPhone will rebuild the music library based on the latest data in iCloud. This often restores any missing music that may have failed to sync properly before.

However, keep in mind this is just a temporary fix. If the underlying problem persists, your music library may still have issues syncing properly through iCloud. But disabling and re-enabling the feature is one of the easiest ways to quickly get your music to show up again if it has mysteriously disappeared.

Contact Apple Support

If you still can’t restore your music after trying the troubleshooting steps, it’s best to contact Apple Support directly for further assistance. Apple provides several support options:

When contacting Apple Support, be ready to provide your Apple ID and password, iOS version, iPhone model, and a detailed description of the issue. Apple’s experienced support team can further troubleshoot and hopefully resolve your missing music problem.


If music was accidentally deleted or didn’t restore properly when setting up a new iPhone, there are several troubleshooting steps to try and get your music library back.

First, check that you have an iCloud backup that contains your music by going to Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Manage Storage. If you see an iCloud backup, you can restore from this backup to get your music back.

You’ll also want to make sure your iPhone is updated to the latest iOS version, as Apple sometimes fixes music syncing issues in software updates. Go to Settings > General > Software Update to check for and install any available updates.

Next, try connecting your iPhone to iTunes on your computer and see if the music shows up there. You can then sync or transfer purchases and playlists from iTunes to your device. Make sure you authorize the computer in iTunes first under Account > Authorize This Computer.

Additionally, double check that music syncing is enabled in the Music section of the Sync page in iTunes after connecting your iPhone. Make sure “Sync Music” is checked and the correct playlists and artists are selected.

As a last resort, you can try turning off iCloud Music Library in Settings > Music on your iPhone. This reverts your music setup back to syncing directly from iTunes rather than through iCloud.

If you still can’t get your music to restore, you may need to contact Apple support for further troubleshooting assistance.