[Updated] iPhone wallpaper turns black or disappears for some even after iOS 16.1.1 update (workaround inside)

iPhone background turns black or disappears after iOS 16.1.1 update

New updates are added at the bottom of this story…….

The original story (posted November 11, 2022) is as follows:

Since its release in mid-September, iOS 16 has been a great improvement to the iPhone operating system. Apple released iOS 16.1.1 with several minor bug fixes and security updates on November 9, 2022.

iPhone background turns black

However, right now, some iPhone users are reporting an issue where the background turns black or disappears for them (1And the2And the3And the4).


Affected iPhone users say that when they switch to the lock or home screen, the wallpaper is automatically changed to a black background.

After the iPhone restarts, the correct wallpaper is displayed, however, the next time the phone goes to sleep, it displays a black background.

Moreover, this issue started with iOS 16.1 and continued even with the latest iOS 16.1.1, as reported by several users (1And the2).

I have an iPhone 12 updated to iOS 16. The background and wallpaper keep changing to black automatically. I have to turn off my phone to get the lock screen image back and also the home screen wallpaper (or background). Is this a setting I set incorrectly or is there a fix to turn this off?

I’m having a frustrating issue with my iPhone 13 Pro Max running 16.1. At random times the background disappears leaving me with a black screen. I have to reboot to restore the wallpaper momentarily, but it goes away again. Will Apple release a fix for this?

Possible solution

Among the reports, there are also potential solutions that can mitigate the problem. First, apply the background you’ve used in the past:

iPhone solution

Another user claims that the problem is caused by wrong migration of background settings between iOS versions. Granted, you can follow these steps to get your original background image back:

1. Using iTunes, make a complete backup of your iPhone
2. Download, install and launch iExplorer on the Sandbox instance
3. Copy the main plist and manifest files to a folder inside the Sandbox
4. Tell iExplorer to open this folder as an iTunes backup location

5. In iExplorer find Home > Springboard and then make a note of the path of “LockBackground.cpbitmap” and OriginalLockBackground.cpbitmap, it could be “86” or “7c” or something else – I had those two files, you probably will have more or less of files, but at least
6. Go back to your iTunes backup and copy only two alphabetical folders into the same folder inside the Sandbox

7. Tell iExplorer to export the .cpbitmap files and copy those from the Sandbox to your desktop
8. Open the browser at https://cpbitmap.github.io/ or https://www.dcode.fr/cpbitmap-format
9. Download and convert to PNG, JPG or TIFF
10. Using iTunes, Dropbox, or even emailing yourself, send the image back to your phone and set it as wallpaper

According to a user who contacted Apple Support, wallpapers in iOS 16 are considered to be in “pairs”: the lock screen and the home screen.

So, to customize your home screen image, you first have to associate it with your lock screen image:

Apple iPhone solution
source (click/tap to view)

Users can contact Apple Support regarding this issue by clicking here over here.

If the above solutions helped you to fix the background turning black issue, do let us know in the comments below.

First update (November 18, 2022)

03:05 PM (IST): Here is a possible explanation for why wallpaper turns black or has disappeared on iPhone.

iPhone wallpaper turns black cause

Update 2 (November 21, 2022)

03:33 PM (IST): We’ve come up with a workaround for the iPhone wallpaper turning black issue for some users. You can check it out below.

iPhone wallpaper turned black
source (click/tap to view)

Update 3 (November 22, 2022)

06:35 PM (IST): There are some potential solutions that can help you fix this problem. First, you can try Re-download The image you are trying to use as wallpaper.

Secondly, restart your iPhone by following these steps:

1. Press and quickly release the Volume Up button.
2. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button.
3. Press and hold the Side button.
4. When the Apple logo appears, release the Side button.

finally, delete Attractive lock screen and add a new one using the same background.

Update 4 (November 24, 2022)

03:22 PM (IST): Depending on the user, simple steps like re-applying the same image as wallpaper can be a temporary solution.

PSA for iPhone users: If your wallpaper has turned black at unexpected times, you need to change or re-upload your wallpaper image. I was willing to trade in my iPhone in frustration, but I’ve found that others online have experienced that too.

Update 5 (November 25, 2022)

06:04 PM (IST): We came across a report on a community forum that might explain the reason behind the issue where the iPhone background turns black.

It seems to have something to do with the interaction between AOD, focus and backgrounds.

iPhone wallpaper turned black
source (click/tap to view)

Update 6 (November 29, 2022)

05:00 PM (IST): user mentioned Disabling the Focus State option fixed the issue. You can find this option through the “Settings/Focus” path.

Update 7 (December 2, 2022)

04:50 PM (IST): Apple just released the stable iOS 16.1.2 update for everyone, so users affected by this bug (and others) can try to update and see if it’s resolved.

Hello. We can help. If you’re having a problem with the wallpaper on your iPhone, start by updating to iOS 16.1.2 to see if that solves the problem: https://s.apple.com/dE4w1r7M9c

Update 8 (December 5, 2022)

05:30 PM (IST): According to an affected person, the issue where the wallpaper disappears or turns black after updating to iOS 16.1.2 has been resolved.

iOS 16.1.2 is out now and worth a try. I restored my old wallpaper following the instructions others have posted here and I am now running 16.1.2 with no issues. (source)

NBYou can view our dedicated website Apple section Learn more about errors and other issues.

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