My grandmother got her iPad somehow in this state where it seems to be in language setup, but taps dont work as expected, rather they activate unusual boxes on the screen:

enter image description here

How can I fix this? Holding down the power and home button for 10 seconds restarted the iPad but the same screen was there. No interaction seems to be doing anything to advance the setup, the boxes that pop up seem to be interfering. The box in the image appears after tapping.

  • Did you actually swipe the screen?
    – techraf
    Mar 26, 2016 at 23:49
  • @techraf yes. I'm actually very familliar with the iPad, no normal interaction seemed to work as expected, not that there are many options on that screen.. But the boxes that come up remind me of the voice over feature on OSX. It seemed like some sort of special accessibility feature for disabilities.
    – J.Todd
    Mar 26, 2016 at 23:59
  • Trying to swipe creates a box just like the one seen in the center.
    – J.Todd
    Mar 27, 2016 at 0:01

4 Answers 4


I figured out the answer. This state is called Voiceover, its an accessibility feature for the visially impaired,

However when used unintentionally by someone who doesnt know the special controls of the Voiceover feature, it can seem that the device simply is not responding to touch.

One simply has to tap buttons to select them then doubletap to click them, navigate to the Voiceover memu under accessibility and turn it off. Alternatively clicking the home-button 3 times in rapid succession enables/disables this feature.


Just press the home button 3 times in quick succession and it turns off.


You can put the iPad into recovery mode by plugging it to a computer with iTunes installed. Start with the iPad powered off and hold down the Home button while connecting it to the computer via USB. Hold the Home button down until you see the iTunes connection on the iPad screen.


Hold the power button and only power off and then start iPad

I had the same issue when upgrading to recent firmware and restarting fixed it

In past I hold both power and home both to enter recovery but doing so I had to restore to factory default

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