[Solved] iPhone 13/13 Pro(Max) Stuck on Preparing to Transfer

If you fail to transfer data to iPhone 13 from the old one because iPhone 13 stuck on preparing to transfer for a long time, try 3 simple solutions to fix it or alternatives to achieve iPhone to iPhone transfer quickly in this guide.


By Demi / Updated on May 24, 2023

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iPhone stuck on "Preparing to Transfer"

I was setting up my iPhone. After going through the Apple ID and settings, it returned to the transfer process. It got to a screen that said “Preparing to transfer...”. But it has been more than 20 minutes and nothing has changed. Is there anything I can do to rectify this? Or is it fine?

- Question from Apple Community

Are you attracted by the new colors and new advanced features in the brand new iPhone 13 series? You maybe can't wait to explorer your new iPhone 13 as long as you finally get one.

iPhone 13

After setting up your new iPhone, you may intend to transfer all data from your previous iPhone using Quick Start. However, how disappointing is it that the Quick Start not working, and the iPhone 13 stuck on preparing to transfer.

Part 1. Why iPhone 13/12 stuck on preparing to transfer

If you are curious about why it is taking so long to transfer data to your new iPhone 13, the following reasons may explain why for you.

🔧  A poor Wi-Fi connection. If you are using Quick Start wirelessly under a poor WiFi connection, it may take time for iPhones to detect each other.
🔧 The size of data on the source iPhone. If there are a large number of files waiting to transfer, it may take you more than one hour on the preparing page.
🔧 Some unknown software issues. Chances are that some unknown software issues may stop you from using Quick Start.

Hopefully, you can get rid of the issue with the solutions below. Optionally, iPhone to iPhone transfer tools are also available in this guide.

Note: Solutions and tools presented in this post can be used to solve iPhone 13 (mini) /13 Pro (Max) /14/12 stuck on preparing to transfer, as well as other iPhone migration issues.

Part 2. 3 common fixes to iPhone 13 stuck on preparing to transfer

iPhone to iPhone transfer stuck may result from many reasons. After all, Quick Start requires a lot to work well. Optionally, if you are in a hurry, you can choose to transfer everything from old iPhone to new iPhone 13 with the tool mentioned in the next part.  You can do some checks before trying these solutions.

• Keep the two iPhones near to each other. A short-range between two iPhones is a prerequisite throughout the transfer process using Quick Start.
• Keep both iPhones on charge. The transfer process always takes time. If either of your iPhone is on a low battery, the iPhone to iPhone transfer may get stuck. Therefore, you can keep both iPhones on charge.

Way 1. Check the versions of iOS on both iPhones

Quick Start service can offer you a full iPhone migration unless both your iPhones are using iOS 12.4 or later. Therefore, you can check the versions of iOS on both iPhone.

On both of your iPhone, head to Settings > General > Software Update to have a check. If necessary, you can also update iOS to the latest version.

iOS Software Update

Way 2. Check the WiFi network condition of two iPhones

Both iPhones need to connect to the same WiFi network when using Quick Start to iPhone migration. You can go to Settings > WiFi to have a check. Besides that, the WiFi network needs to be stable.

To avoid any unknown network issue that lead to iPhone 13 stuck on transferring data, you can even reset network settings. Go to Settings > General Transfer or Reset iPhone > Reset Reset Network Settings. Then, enter your password to make it.

Reset Network Setting

It doesn’t erase the data on your iPhone, but erase all Wi-Fi password and Bluetooth connection history. Now, you can connect to the Wi-Fi again to try again.

Way 3. Use Quick Start in a wired way

Quick Start provides you both wireless and wired ways to achieve iPhone to iPhone transfer. If you failed wirelessly, get a USB 3 Camera Adaptor and a Lightning to USB cable to migrate data to iPhone 13 using Quick Start. The steps are exactly the same as you do wirelessly.

Lightning To 3 Camera Adapter

Part 3. Alternatives to Quick Start to transfer data to new iPhone 13/12

If your new iPhone is still stuck on preparing to transfer, why don’t you try some alternatives to migrate data? You can achieve iPhone to iPhone transfer directly with FoneTool or backup data on old iPhone using iCloud and restore to the new one.

Alternative 1. iPhone to iPhone transfer with FoneTool (1-click transfer)

You can try FoneTool, the professional transfer software, to help you transfer from iPhone to iPhone directly with a few clicks. Without any bother of network or distance, the task is offline at a superfast speed. It can transfer almost all data to your iPhone 13, which includes photos, contacts, call history, text messages, memos, calendars, Safari (history, bookmarks), applications (data files, preference) as well as system settings, etc.

What features FoneTool has, compared with Quick Start
👍 Faster transfer speed. You don't need to worry about encountering the same issue in FoneTool. Instead, it just takes less than half an hour to finish the task.
👍 Offline and stable transfer process. FoneTool requires you to connect your iPhones to computer during the transfer process, which makes the process more stable and prevents your iPhone from getting stuck.
👍 More transfer solutions. You cannot use Quick Start to transfer data if your iPhone 13 has been setup. Luckily, you can rely on FoneTool to transfer data from iPhone to iPhone after set up fully or selectively.

How to switch all data to your new iPhone 13/12 with FoneTool

Step 1. On a Windows PC, download and install FoneTool by clicking the icon below.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7
Secure Download

Step 2. Connect both iPhones to the computer with USB > Click Phone Transfer on the Home screen of FoneTool > Click Start Transfer under iPhone to iPhone.

iPhone To iPhone Transfer

Warm tip: If you have only one Apple Lightning USB cable, you are also given Full Backup option to full backup your old iPhone and restore it to your new iPhone with no data loss.

Step 3. To protect your privacy, you can enable Backup encryption. You will be asked to enter the password when you try to access the data in the future.

Backup Encryption Not Enabled

Step 4. Click Start Transfer to begin the task. When it finishes, your new iPhone will be restarted automatically.

Start Transfer

FoneTool also helps you deeply wipe the old iPhone clean before selling or giving it to others. Want to schedule daily backup on your iPhone 13? The function Selective Backup in FoneTool enables you to backup iPhone 13 to PC selectively to keep data safe.

Alternative 2. Transfer data to iPhone 13 using iCloud

You can also rely on the built-in service, iCloud, to backup your old iPhone. Note that iCloud just provides you 5 GB of free storage space. Therefore, it is suggested to restore data from iCloud backup only when you have paid for extra space to back up your previous iPhone,

To restore iCloud backup successfully, your new iPhone 13 needs to connect to WiFi network. Once the iPhone disconnects from WiFi, the process will pause until it reconnects.

To transfer data to iPhone 13 using iCloud, turn on your new iPhone > Follow the steps until you see Apps & Data screen > Choose Restore from iCloud Backup.

Choose Restore Option

Then you can sign in to iCloud with your Apple ID and choose a backup to start transferring.

Note: Depending on the number of data, contents like your apps, photos, music, and other information will continue to restore in the background in the next hours or days.


That’s all about iPhone 13 stuck on preparing to transfer. If the issue remains after you try every effort. It is suggested to try FoneTool, iCloud or other tools to migrate data to your new iPhone 13.

Besides, if you just need, to transfer photos from old iPhone to new iPhone, FoneTool can be your best choice. For more queries or feedback, feel free to leave your comments or contact us.