How to Troubleshoot AirDrop Problems (Airdrop Waiting)?

AirDrop is a proprietary wireless ad hoc service only for Apple Inc.’s iOS and macOS operating systems. This is effectively introduced in Mac OS X Lion and iOS 7, which can effortlessly support to transfer of files among Macintosh computers

Why does AirDrop say waiting?

Here, you have some of the effective reasons why AirDrop says waiting on iPhone 14/13/12/iPad/Mac.

  • Software glitches: A malfunctioning software error on your device can prevent the AirDrop from working properly and warns you with a waiting message.
  • iOS update: If you have been updated to the latest version, which can also bring some bugs that fight with AirDrop. We have major users who have reported that AirDrop is not working after updating to iOS 16/15.
  • Wrong settings: It can also be due to improper settings like the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth is not turned on properly, or the personal Hotspot is not turned off correctly, these are the reasons for the AirDrop not working and stuck on waiting.

How to fix Airdrop stuck on a waiting iPhone/Mac device?

For more support, you need to proceed below with the raised solutions one by one till your problem is fixed.

1# Turn on the AirDrop restriction

AirDrop restriction being switched off can also be the major reason for Airdrop being stuck on waiting later failed. Here, use the below steps to enable the settings.

Operate the Settings app > Screen Time > Content & Privacy Restrictions > Allowed Apps, then switch on the toggle of AirDrop.

2# Check related settings

Following the prior statement, irrelevant settings can be a major trigger for the AirDrop just says waiting. So, it is essential to inspect all the related settings to AirDrop. You can ensure using the stated tips given below:

Tip 1 – Re-enable Bluetooth and Wi-Fi

AirDrop needs a Wi-Fi connection and Bluetooth to perform efficient access. Eventually, try to disable and re-enable Bluetooth and Wi-Fi on both Mac and iPhone/iPad devices. You need to wait at least for a few seconds and try to restart the AirDrop.

Note: Ensure both two devices are close to each other and within the range of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth range (30 feet, preferably nearer).

Tip 2 – Check three discovery settings.

You can see important three levels for AirDrop:

  • Receiving Off
  • Contacts Only
  • Everyone.

If you attempt to airdrop from iPhone to Mac but facing an issue with waiting, we suggest you to select Everyone on both macOS and iOS.

Contacts Only: You even can able to send and receive files from people right from your saved contacts.

Everyone: using this option, you can share with everyone.

Tip 3 – Check the Personal Hotspot to turn it off

AirDrop might trouble you with stuck issues by waiting when Personal Hotspot is enabled on iPhone/iPad. Simply you have to disable it from the Control Center.

Tip 4 – Disable Do Not Disturb

If your Do Not Disturb Mode is under enabled state on your Mac or iPhone device. Airdrop won’t open up or access. So, all you need is to turn off the DND Mode.

On iPhone or iPad: switch OFF it using the active Control Center.
On Mac: Connect through the Notifications icon which is present in the top-right corner, and switch OFF the DND Mode.

3# Reset network working

If you have an issue with the Wi-Fi connection, you have to reset the network settings to connect your device for airdropping. Proceed using the options- Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings.

4# Log out and back into iCloud

Initially, an attempt to sign-in and get back to iCloud might give your refresh state for your account to escape from account-related errors which may cause issues like ‘AirDrop keeps saying waiting’.

  • Step 1. Connect via Settings > click [your name] > tap Sign Out.
  • Step 2. You are supposed to mention the Apple ID password to confirm and tap Turn Off.
  • Step 3. Connect back to the active Settings to Sign in with your iCloud account.

5# Force reboot iPhone/restart the device

It is highly possible for the device to get stuck on and cause AirDrop waiting iPhone to mac, you have to actively restart your iPhone or Mac.

For iPhone 6 and earlier: Gently, press the Sleep/Wake button and Home button till you see the Apple logo appears.

For iPhone 7 and Plus: Firmly, press the Sleep/Wake button and Volume Down button till you notice the Apple logo on the screen.

For iPhone 8/X and later: Here, you have to press both Volume Up and Volume Down buttons together, then try to hold the Side button till you find the Apple logo on the screen.

For Mac: Choose the Apple menu in the upper left corner of the screen and confirm with the option Restart.

6# Update the system

At times, software updates seldom cause troubles, but sometimes you can solve them easily. You even have the option to try to update the macOS or iOS version.

For iOS: Connect via the options like Settings > General > Software Update, and check if a new version of iOS is available.

For macOS: choose the Apple icon > System Preferences or About This Mac > Software Update > Update Now.

List of reasons that can cause Apple AirDrop stops working

You serve you the best information detailing how an individual can troubleshoot the AirDrop issues which they may experience on their devices. Here, we will share with you information that must be done if you get such errors like:

  • AirDrop doesn’t show up
  • AirDrop not working on iPhone
  • AirDrop is saying “waiting” then “failed.”
  • The other device can’t be seen
  • AirDrop is not working as expected
  • Airdrop Not Working on Mac

Troubleshoot AirDrop problems (Airdrop Waiting)

If your issues and problems are screening up on your Apple AirDrop, connect through the given guidelines to resolve them immediately:

  • Initially, you have to turn OFF your Bluetooth feature, relax at least for 15 seconds and switch it ON. Again, Turn off the Wi-Fi feature and wait for at least 15 seconds and activate them again. Switch ON the Airplane Mode feature and wait for 15 seconds and you have to disable it again. Finally, restart the device.
  • Here, you can find the efficient connection problem. Try to reset the network settings. Prior, to proceeding- try to ensure with network settings like Wi-Fi passwords are erased.
  • When it comes to the iOS device, make use of the options like Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. On the macOS device, select the Apple menu > System Preferences > Network. At last, try to remove the Wi-Fi settings and then re-add.


It is very crucial to confirm whether the devices iPhone, iPad, or Mac is ascertainable to receive AirDrop. On your Mac device, connect through the Finder and choose the Go > Airdrop>” Allow me to be discovered by” setting. Finally, use the “No One” to modify the option- “Everyone” or “Contacts Only”.

AirDrop restriction is switched off and can also be a trigger for Airdrop being stuck on waiting and then failed, you have to enable it. Connect via the Settings app > Screen Time > Content & Privacy Restrictions > Allowed Apps, then turn on the toggle of AirDrop. Then, you have to verify the related settings As we mentioned before, some wrong settings can cause AirDrop to get stuck on waiting.

Connect through the options like Apple menu > System Preferences > Security & Privacy. Hit the Firewall tab and confirm that the “Block all incoming connections” is not been chosen. On your active iPhone or iPad device, pick your Settings > General > AirDrop. If the option shows as “Receiving Off”, modify it.