Restart Your iPod Touch, iPhone, or iPad With a Frozen Lock Screen
Q: My iPod Touch is unresponsive. I can’t restart it; the sliders on the lockscreen won’t work. Can anyone help me?
A: I do not know what iPod Touch model you have, but I can tell from your reference to “the sliders” that your iPod Touch is currently running something other than iOS 7 (there are no sliders in iOS 7, but there are sliders in iOS 6 and earlier, however). If you were running iOS 7 on your iPod Touch, it’s likely that you would be able to slide anywhere on the lock screen from left to right (or right to left, in some cases) and unlock the iPod Touch.
Therefore, if your iPod Touch is running iOS 6 or earlier, which mandates the use of lock screen sliders, you will be unable to overcome the lock screen unless you can do some sort of restart on the device. You say in your question that “I can’t turn it off to reset it,” but this is not true: there is another way to reset the device or restart the device without using the sliders on the lock screen. To restart your iPod Touch, iPhone, or iPad running iOS 6 or earlier with a frozen lock screen, perform the following steps:
Press the top black button above the top of your home screen. You should see the black button at the top of your iPod. Regardless of the color of the button, you should press the button above the top of your screen. If you press and hold it long enough, you should see a message on the screen that says “slide to power off.” Slide across the top of the screen to power off the iPod Touch or iOS device.
Once your iPod, iPad, or iPhone screen turns dark, press the top button again to turn the screen back on. When you see the Apple logo appear in bright white, rest the device and wait until the lock screen reappears. This is the easiest way to restart your iPod Touch.
If you restart your iPod Touch and nothing changes, you may need to place the iPod Touch in recovery mode. To do this, press the power button on the iPod Touch once more (it should be on the left side) and hold it down for 3 seconds. Then, hold down the home button (while still holding the power button) for 10 seconds.
Once you release the power button, continue to hold down the home button for another few seconds, then connect your iPod Touch or iOS device to your computer via the USB cable. At this point, your device will be in recovery mode. It’s likely Apple will allow you to reset your device so that you can get past your lock screen.
Keep in mind that there may be other issues with your iPod Touch; for example, your iPod Touch may be too old and no longer contains web support. If this is the case, it would explain why you can no longer restart your iPod Touch or bypass your lock screen effectively.
Another issue regarding your iPod Touch pertains to the need to prevent the lock screen from freezing up again. I would say that you need to deactivate your lock screen so that you can access your other settings. If you restart your iPod Touch or perform the restore mode successfully, you can deactivate your lock screen by going into settings, select the general tab, then scroll down to “auto-lock” and select “never” from the array of options. This will keep the lock screen from locking every few minutes – which may make it hard for you to get beyond the lock screen.
Hopefully, this advice helps you restart your iPod Touch, iPhone, or iPad lock screen. If you are experiencing other problems, please write in and let us know. We’d love to diagnose your problem and help you learn how to get more out of your iOS device.