iPhone Mail is Not Downloading Messages? Try This


Messages in Apple Mail on iPhone/iPad sometimes become stuck in limbo, as the application fails to download the messages. Messages with attachments cannot be viewed in the mail app. Instead, the user receives the following notification:

‘This Message Has Not Been Downloaded to the Server’

The error message has been reported many times by users who have just updated their device with the latest version of iOS. There are a few things you can try to fix this problem. This tutorial will provide you with the steps to troubleshoot this error and solve the problem on your device.

Close the Mail app, wait about 30 seconds, and re-launch it.

Your email application may have just caught a glitch. Try to restart your device to reset it. For iPhone users, swipe the Home Gesture Bar from the bottom up to close the Mail app. Wait for about 30 seconds and reopen the app.

Check Internet Connection

Many times your Mail account is stalled because you have lost your Internet connection. Check your Internet connection by going to Wi-Fi on iPhone or clicking on use the Airplane Mode. Make sure your WiFi is ON with a stable connection.

Forward Mail

If you try this method, it may solve the problem for individual messages but not for the entire inbox. Select a message to forward and click ‘Forward’. The app should prompt you to complete the download. Click ‘YES’. The message will download.

Reset Your Network

Some users have reported receiving the ‘This message has not been downloaded to the server’ when trying to view emails from the MS exchange. The header of the content was loaded but not To fix the error, you may try resetting your Network Settings. Go to General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. Your settings will go back to the factory default.

Use IMAP instead of POP

POP3 and IMAP are most commonly used to send and receive email. The default settings for your iPhone email app is POP3. However, in some situations, this setting may need to be changed. Use IMAP instead of using POP on iPhone or Mac so that you can uncheck removed messages.

Note: If you switch from POP3 to IMPA, your existing emails will all be lost. You can backup your email prior to the switch.

1. First, delete your POP3 account. Go to Settings > Accounts & Passwords. Select the account that you want to delete (see example in red box):

2. Inside the selected email account, tap ‘Delete Account’. At the prompting, select ‘Delete Account’ again to confirm your action.

3. Set up your IMAP account on your iPhone. Go to cPanel > Email Accounts and choose ‘Set Up Email Client’. Then go to Settings > Accounts & Passwords > Add account. The list of email providers should appear. Select ‘Other’ for the IMAP, and then ‘Add Mail Account’.

4. Enter your name, email, password, and description.

5. Select ‘Next’. Make sure that IMAP is selected in the ‘New Account’ screen. For the Incoming Mail Server, enter Host Name, your Username, and password. For the Outgoing Mail Server, enter your Username, and password. Select ‘Next’ and then ‘Save’.

6. When redirected to ‘Accounts’ selected the new account you created, and then select your email. Scroll down and select ‘Advanced’. In ‘Incoming Settings’, make sure that the Server Port is 993 for IMAP. Make sure ‘Use SSL’ is selected:

7. Go back to Accounts > Outgoing Mail Server and select the SMTP entry with host name. Tap the name again under ‘Primary Server’. Make sure the port is 465 for IMAP and that ‘Use SSL’ is selected. Select ‘Done’. You should be able to use your new email.

Update and Fetch Data Online

Update your Fetch Settings by going to Settings > Accounts & Passwords. Select ‘Fetch New Data’ and toggle OFF the ‘Push’.

Change the Fetch settings to ‘Automatically’. Select any accounts that still show the ‘Push’ and change them to ‘Fetch’. Restart your device.

You can force your iPhone to fetch data online as a way to keep using your email app. Your iOS device must have an Internet connect to fetch data. First, turn on ‘Force Data Settings’.Then, go to ‘Advanced’ and manually select the process for all email accounts on your iPhone. Restart your iPhone to activate the settings.

Choose Another Email App

If you could not get your email to download after following these steps, you can always use another mail app for your mobile device. You can go to the App Store and download a different application which offers a similar user experience. You can jailbreak your iPhone so that you can install the third-party software without a hitch.

Get Help from Apple Support

If you haven’t gotten your mail to work properly, contact Apple Support.

David Johnson is a freelance writer with 9 years of experience writing for Techzillo and other established tech outlets like iMore. His focus and key interests are Apple and accessibility as well as consumer technology in general. Read our Editorial Guidlines and Fact Checking process.


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