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iPhone notes disappeared after iOS update [simple fix]

Rob Parsons Updated on Apr 15, 2022 4:55 PM

It's easy to panic if the iPhone notes disappeared after updating to the latest iOS, but you can recover lost notes on iPhone easily thanks to this article.

iOS Update exists to make a fresh look, add improved features and fix some bugs for iPhone, upgrading the user experience. However, most Apple users report that the notes disappeared from iPhone after a new iOS update, which renders them at a loss and even causes panic. Actually, notes disappearance issue isn't exactly uncommon for iPhone, and thankfully there're lots of solutions for this frustrating situation.

Some quick fixes are available to recover lost iPhone notes, and that's exactly we'll be discussing in the article. If the fixes don't help, that's ok, there're still ways to recover lost notes on iPhone. Here's how to fix notes disappeared from iPhone after updating new iOS.

Important: If you make sure that the reason for the notes disappearing issue is you permanently delete your notes on your iOS device, we recommend you use iPhone Data Recovery. Learn more in this part.

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What to do if the notes disappearing from iPhone after iOS update | Why iPhone notes are missing

For an effective solution, we first need to understand some of the cases for this issue - it could be update errors, or maybe an accidental deletion of notes saved on your iPhone or associated mail account, or maybe the disabled iCloud sync feature.

Below we'll cover a few relevant reasons and provide you with several fixes for iPhone notes disappeared after new update.

1. Restart your iPhone

Although iOS updating brings new key features and enhancement, it maybe also come with some errors and bugs that lead to data loss. In order to quickly fix your problem, we'll need you to reboot your iPhone - a fix can address almost all iPhone issues just taking a few seconds.

  • If you use iPhone 8 or earlier model, press and hold the Side button until a slider appears. If you use iPhone X or later model, press the Side button and the Volume up/down button at the same time, and then you can see the slider on the screen.
  • Swipe the slider to the far right to shut down your iPhone.
  • Then, keep holding the Side button and you will see the Apple logo (in iPhone 8 or earlier model). Or, hold the Side button and Volume up/down button simultaneously again until the Apple logo appears (in iPhone X or later model). Just let your iPhone do its thing and it will be rebooted.
  • Lastly, head to Notes app to check if the lost notes reappear on your iPhone.

2. Check "Recently Deleted" folder

If you've deleted a bulk of notes in batches that are no longer in use before, but now you realize some notes disappeared from your iPhone, it's possible that the deleted notes include the ones that still matter to you. So, make sure if the notes are removed to a place named "Recently Deleted". But only if these should be iCloud notes and they have been deleted within the last 30 days, you can retrieve them in the "Recently Deleted" folder.

  • Open your favorite website on your computer and navigate to the web version of iCloud.
  • Log into your Apple ID to enter iCloud.com. In the main interface, click the Notes icon.

  • Then, hit "Recently Deleted" in the left sidebar and check whether the iCloud notes include the notes you still need or not. If you can find what you need, then go to next step; otherwise, continue to the next fix.
  • Select the notes you would like to recover, then click Recover.
  • A few seconds later, hit "Notes" on the left and you will see the disappeared iPhone note is recovered.

Alternatively, you can go to Notes app on your iPhone to access the "Recently Deleted" folder.

  • Unlock your iPhone and open Notes app.
  • Tap the Back icon in the upper left, and click "Recently Deleted" to view the deleted notes.
  • If there appear the notes you want to recover, just tap Edit on the top right of the screen and check the box next to the note. You can select multiple notes at once to recover.
  • Tap "Move To..." > "Notes".

Remember, if you're not using upgraded Notes, you can't see the "Recently Deleted" folder on your device and thus the disappeared notes can't be retrieved to your iPhone. A pro tip: There's always a "Recently Deleted" folder on a device with iOS 9 or later or OS X 10.11 or later.

3. Enable iCloud sync feature

When the iCloud sync is turned off, the iCloud notes will also disappear off your iPhone. So, if the fixes above failed you, just be sure, check if the status of the iCloud sync. Here's how to do that:

  • Head to Settings app > [Your name] > iCloud.
  • Find the "Notes" under APPS USING ICLOUD, and check if the switch is wiped to the right. If so, skip to the next fix, but if not, you continue reading next step.
  • If the switch is turned off, toggle on "Notes".
  • Go to Notes app and you will see the missing notes on the Notes list.

4. Check mail account settings

Some users also reported that toggling off "Notes" under mail account can make the notes disappearing from iPhone. So, if nothing from above helped you, let's try the simple solution: turn on "Notes" in the mail settings.

  • Navigate to Settings app > Notes > Accounts.
  • Tap any mail account under ACCOUNTS, and check if the "Notes" switch is turned on. If not, you should turn it on, or you have to try the next fix.

Your notes now should appear. If you always keep your notes saved in your work mail account and now the account is deleted, try adding the account back and maybe you can retrieve the lost notes.

5. Reinstall Notes app

Although this fix may sound banal, there's a chance that you underestimate it. So, just try reinstalling the Notes app on your iOS device to recover disappeared notes.

  • In the App Store, tap "Search" section and type "notes" on the search bar.
  • Tap on the cloud icon. And the installation process begins.
  • Once finished, open Notes app and you would see the lost iPhone notes come back.

Bonus troubleshooting tips: How to recover lost iPhone notes after new iOS update

If you're still stuck with the "notes disappeared from iPhone after update" problem at hand, we can only suggest getting help from iPhone data recovery programs or turning to the backups you've made for your iPhone. Here're a few ways to recover lost nots on your iPhone.

Retrieve lost notes from iPhone without backups

If you match these criteria below, we recommend you to install and use the iPhone Data Recovery software:

  • Permanently delete the notes saved on your iPhone (not in iCloud).
  • Never thought to back up iPhone before an update, and no possible to restore notes from backup files.
  • Want to selectively recover disappeared notes on iPhone after updating.

The software is good option for anyone who looking to recover permanently deleted notes on iPhone without the iCloud or iTunes backup files. As you expect from other iPhone data recovery programs in the market, it can recover almost all data lost from your iPhone: notes, contacts, messages, call history, photos, etc. You can even preview the scanned data to make sure that the internal storage still saves the disappeared items. It is also armed with a wonderful feature that allows you to partially recover notes data or other data.

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for Windows | for MacOS

"Where did my iPhone notes go?", you may be wondering when you can't find the lost notes in the "Recently Deleted" folder. Don't worry, the lost notes are still stored in an invisible place of your iPhone internal storage. Keep in mind that this software can't get things done if you iPhone data is written over.

1. Fire up the program, then connect your iPhone to computer with a USB cable. Unlock your iPhone so that the interface like the screenshot below can display to you. After that, click on Start Scan.

2. As the software will scan all the data stored on your iPhone's storage so the scan may take some time (up to 20 minutes). Once done, you will see a list of all file types on the screen.

3. Just check the box next to "Notes", and then you preview the notes disappeared from your iPhone. Now it's time to select which notes to recover. You can select all items, or you can just choose the notes you need to recover.

4. Click on Recover and make sure where you want the recovered notes to save. Just click on Recover again to start to notes recovery process.

The software isn't perfect, but if you just need a workable software to retrieve part of lost notes while iCloud or iTunes backups can't be your lifesaver, it should be your go-to pick.

Recover notes disappeared from iPhone with iCloud

iCloud is cloud storage service from Apple Inc., which can also perform an automatic backup of your iPhone data. If you've backed up the notes before updating your iPhone to the latest iOS, you're able to restore lost notes from iCloud backup. But you should know that there's no guarantee that iCloud backups contain the disappeared notes, and this way will require you to reset your iPhone to default settings and so the existing/new data on your iPhone will be erased.

Also note that iCloud won't back up the data stored in the iCloud. Only when iCloud Notes sync is turned off, the notes can be backed up to iCloud.

To restore missing notes from iCloud backup, you firstly need to factory reset your iPhone. Just go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset All Settings, then enter your passcode and tap Reset All Settings to confirm. Your iPhone will be shut down and reboot.

When the phone reboot completed, you need to set up some settings as instructed. Afterwards, you'll see an "Apps & Data" window. Here, tap on Restore from iCloud Backup. Then enter your Apple ID and select an appropriate backup file to restore.

iCloud only supports restoring full backup data to your iOS device, so you have to wait for a long time. Sometime later, you should be able to view the disappeared iPhone notes on Notes app.

Restore lost iPhone notes from iTunes

Also backing up your iPhone notes to iTunes before iOS update? Lucky for you. You can retrieve disappeared notes from iPhone with iTunes back with one click. However, we have to warn you that restoring from iTunes is also all or none, and this will clean your current iPhone data. Just think over this way.

If you're sure you want to restore lost notes from iTunes, just connect your iPhone to computer using its charging cable and launch iTunes. Then, click on the iPhone icon on the upper left of the screen. And select "Summary" and hit Restore Backup... perform the restoration process.

The problem here is that if you don't want to restore all data on the iTunes backup this way won't be able to suit your need, and we've warned you this in advance. The next solution, if you have desire to selectively recover the notes disappearing on iPhone, is to use iPhone Data Recovery.

Only recover lost iPhone notes with iTunes backups and without erasing iPhone

Don't be fooled by its name, iPhone Data Recovery can not only recover lost data on iPhone, but also restore lost data from iTunes backup. With this program, even better, you don't have to do a full restoration and erase your iPhone data. Here's how:

1. Download the software on your computer and launch it. Then, click on Recover from iTunes Backup File. If you've backed up your iPhone to iTunes in this computer, you'll see a list of iTunes backups in the right screen. Just select the right backup file, and click on Start Scan.

2. Once the scan is completed, check the box next to "Notes". By now, you can preview all the notes saved in the iTunes backup. Just choose specific notes that have disappeared from your iPhone and hit Recover.

Is it possible to selectively recover notes disappeared from iPhone with iCloud backups? Of course. iPhone Data Recovery can also do the trick. Read our guide to restore only notes from iCloud backup.

Save yourself the headache and back up your iPhone to avoid the notes disappeared on iPhone issue

Perhaps you've heard it so many times, but it's the truth: Backups will save yourself the headache when the notes lost from your iPhone. If you haven't yet backed up your device, it may be time to find a safe place to store those critically important assets on your device.

There are numerous of reliable backup solutions out there to choose from, including Apple iCloud, iTunes, Google Drive, iOS Data & Recovery, Dr.Fone, and iMazing. Having multiple backups in different backup services will also mean your data are more fully protected. Just do it now.


We have introduced in detail here quite a few solutions that solve iPhone notes disappeared after iOS update issue. You should choose the one according to the situation you're in. And we hope we have helped you retrieve missing iPhone notes.

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