I have a first generation iPad Air (with up-to-date iOS 8.1)

When I connect it to my 2013 iMac (with up-to-date OS X Yosemite 10.10) - it doesn't work.

Specifically - iTunes automatically launches, but then quickly shows a dialog window that says, "iTunes could not connect to the iPhone. This device is no longer connected."

(That's not a typo - it really says 'iPhone', not 'iPad')

Here's a screenshot:

enter image description here

Meanwhile - on my iPad - in the upper right-hand corner (where the battery life is displayed) - you can see the "plugged in" icon (lightening bolt) rapidly blinking on and off.

In other words - it seems like, when it's plugged in - it's rapidly connecting and disconnecting (several times per second).

If I click "OK" on that dialog window on iTunes - it instantly pops back up, and continues to do so as long as I keep the iPad plugged in.

So - bottom line - I cannot connect my iPad to my iMac.

I'm virtually certain that I was able to connect my iPad before I upgraded to Yosemite on my iMac, and iOS 8 on my iPad.

Thanks in advance for any help!

  • If you have an iPhone, or another iDevice, do you get the same error? Have you tried a known good cable? – IconDaemon Nov 12 '14 at 15:38
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    I had the same problem and rebooting with the iPhone attached did indeed solve the problem - but only temporarily... the next time I try to attach the phone the problem comes back again. – Black Dec 19 '14 at 3:35
  • I have started experiencing this a lot after I upgraded to iOS9.1. Now I have to restart mac and iPhone/iPad, and then I can connect. Incredibly annoying. – neoneye Nov 7 '15 at 18:21

I was getting the same problem yesterday with both my iPads. Finally gave up and re-booted the Mac -- problem went away. Might be worth a try.

  • 2
    I had the same issue with an iPhone, not an iPad. I didn't see the blinking charging icon, just the error message. A reboot of the Mac cleared the problem. – pjmorse Nov 17 '14 at 21:25

The problem I had was the lightning cable. I changed the cable and the problem was solved.

  • 1
    I had the same problem with an old-style (30 pin connector) cable too. It also freaked out iPhoto and I couldn't import photos from any device until I rebooted. – Kent Dec 18 '14 at 6:43
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    It could be that the chip in official cables (apple, belkin, ...) is damaged. Your mac will not recognize the cable and thinks it's a fake cable. Thats why your iPad plugged in icon is blinking. – Jules Dec 18 '14 at 7:26
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    My issue was definitely related to the cable. When held in a certain position there was no trouble but if it moved a little, the connection would drop. – Kent Dec 18 '14 at 7:28

My friend who encountered same problem mentioned he just re-booted the Mac and the problem wnet away, you could give it a shot.


I just experienced this problem with my phone, after I had set the iTunes Devices Preferences to "prevent ... from syncing automatically."

Restarting iTunes alone solved it.


I encountered this bug with... my iPad.

The solution was to restart the iPad.

Before that, these tries had failed :

  • Relaunching iTunes.
  • Restarting the Mac.
  • Using another cable.
  • Using another USB port.

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