Apple’s Airdrop and iCloud services have been lauded time and again for the smooth-sailing experience they provide. However, they, too, aren’t devoid of bugs that cause hiccups in the overall experience.
If you see the “Unable to Share: There was an error while preparing to share. Please try again later” message on your iPhone or iPad while trying to share media from the iCloud photos library, we’ve got you covered here.
The error can be caused due to several reasons, including a temporary software glitch, an issue with iCloud’s sync, poor internet connection or even the low power mode on iPhone.
Here we’ve discussed seven ways to resolve the ‘there was an error while preparing to share’ error.
While basic, restarting your phone can help fix most software or hardware-related errors. First, try a simple restart, followed by a force (or hard) restart.
- For devices without a Home button: Hold down the Sleep/Wake button alongwith either of the volume buttons for a few seconds until a slider shows up; do as indicated to turn off the device.
- For devices with a Home button: To turn off a device with a home button, users will not need to press any volume buttons. Hold down the Sleep/Wake button to bring up the slider and do as indicated.
Force restart iPhone
Try a force restart if a simple restart doesn’t solve the issue. Press the same keys mentioned above for different iPhone models; however, do not release the key when the slider appears and continue to press until the phone shuts down.
- iPhone 8, iPhone X and later: Press and release the Volume Up button, followed by the Volume Down button. Then press and hold the side button until Apple’s logo appears.
- iPad models without a Home button: Press and release the Volume Up button, followed by the Volume Down button. Then press and hold the power button until the device restarts.
- iPhone 7, 7Plus and 7th-gen iPod Touch: Press and hold the power button alongwith the Volume Down button until Apple’s logo appears.
- iPhone 6s and earlier, iPad with Home button, 6th-gen iPod Touch and older: Press and hold the Home button alongside the Power button until the Apple logo appears.
Now, long-press the power button to turn on the device.
Sign out of iCloud and sign back in
Some online forums claim that signing out of the iCloud account and signing back in will help fix the error. Well, it doesn’t harm to try if you’re still facing the issue after having tried all of the fixes listed above.
Open the iPhone’s settings and follow the steps mentioned below to sign out of your iCloud account.
- Tap on your iCloud account account name at the top of the settings.
- Scroll down to the bottom of the next page and tap on Sign Out.
Log back into your iCloud account and see if this fixes the issue.
Disable low power mode
Low power mode on iPhone can be a boon if you’re away from a charging point and running low on juice as it stops all the unnecessary background processes and lowers the phone’s performance to save battery.
However, it can also cause the ‘there was an error while preparing to share’ error. Here is how to disable low power mode on iPhone.
Go to your iPhone’s settings and follow the steps mentioned below to disable the low power mode.
- Scroll down and tap on Battery.
- On the next page, tap on the toggle button beside Low Power Mode.
- Once you’ve disabled the low power mode, you’ll notice that the iPhone’s battery turns back from yellow to white.
- To enable the low power mode, tap on the toggle button again.
Alternatively, you can also disable it using the Control Centre.
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Disable/Enable iCloud Photos
If you’ve enabled iCloud backups for Photos and nothing has fixed the issue so far, you can try toggle the iCloud Photos feature. Open iPhone/iPad settings and follow the steps mentioned below.
- Scroll down and tap on Photos.
- Then scroll down and tap on the toggle button beside iCloud Photos — disable it and enable it again.
Disable Optimize Storage option
If you’ve enabled storage optimisation, iCloud will automatically store a compressed and compatible version of your photo library, which can then easily be transferred to Mac or PC. However, these compact versions can cause a sharing error.
To mitigate this issue, you can store original files of your photos on iCloud by following the steps mentioned below.
- Scroll down and tap on Photos.
- Then scroll down and tap on Keep Originals under Transfer to Mac or PC.
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Check your internet connection
If nothing above works, check your internet connection. If you’re connected to the WiFi, try to reduce wireless interference by placing the router in a better place or removing obstructions from the way.
Also, check if your internet connection’s latency is high using sites like fast.com or speedtest.net. If the latency numbers are high, restart the router.
You can also switch your iPhone’s internet connection from WiFi to cellular data or vice-versa to fix the ‘there was an error while preparing to share’ error.
Reset Network settings
If nothing else has worked so far, you’ll need to reset the network settings, which will only reset the Carrier and WiFi settings.
Open your iPhone’s settings and follow the steps mentioned below to reset network settings.
- Scroll down and tap on General.
- Tap on Reset.
- Then tap on Reset Network Settings on the next page.
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Hard reset iPhone or iPad
Hard reset can help eliminate temporary bugs with your iPhone or iPad’s software that could be causing the ‘there was an error while preparing to share’ error.
Keep in mind there are slight variations in the steps followed for different models of Apple’s devices. Depending on the model, you can use one of the three different ways to hard reset your Apple device.
Power cycle your device
In addition to restarting the device and putting it on airplane mode for a while to fix the ‘there was an error while preparing to share’ error, you can also power cycle your device.
In the case of iPhones or iPad, since you can’t directly disconnect it from the power source — battery — you’ll have to drain the battery completely and then let it sit for a while before recharging.
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