Black screen in crashed iPad video player app

For unknown reasons, the iOS video player app found on all iPads locks itself up in rare situations. Opening the video app results in a black screen, all you can do is jump back to the home screen using the home button. Both, restarting the iPad or re-syncing it on iTunes won’t help.

Now before you restore your iPad, there are two quick things you could try first:

  1. If you know the title of a movie on your iPad, use the search function to look it up and start it by tapping it
  2. …or open the iPod app and select a video podcast or iPad video and play it

The video app should be working again from now on. If it doesn’t then I’m afraid, you probably have to do a full restore of your iPad.

90 replies on “Black screen in crashed iPad video player app”

  1. The trick still works on my iPad 1! Thanks for the help. Would have been the longest flight ever without it!

  2. Searching for a movie name and running it from there worked.
    Thanks a lot for sharing !!

  3. Thanks, I can play my other videos now, but the corrupt movie still stops in the same spot and makes the video app go black. The problem is really that I don’t have this movie downloaded to my computer, so I am afraid to remove it because this is the only copy I have. I just want my $15 movie to play all the way through.

  4. Neither tip worked but thank you. I managed to get the videos working again by unselecting the “Sync movies to iPad” box in iTunes, syncing, then reselecting the box and syncing.

  5. Thank you – tip #1 worked right away. Whew – I had a very disappointed toddler for a second there.

  6. Amazing that this bug is still present today. Video player crashed last week on my wife’s iPad. Glad to find your tip, works perfectly. Thanks!

  7. Can I just say THANKS?! My kid was going nuts and I had restarted the thing a couple of times already.

  8. Thanks a lot. I’ve tried to reboot and restart but still resulted on black screen. But your first suggestion works for me. And now the video app is back to normal.

  9. The search option is not working. Where is the iPod app? Do you need to find this thru iTunes?

  10. thanks a lot! i was sighing about having to fully restore my iPad but then tip no 1 worked :)

  11. Many thanks! This really works and so much easier and better than searching in the apple support, nice simple solution . Thanks again as saved great frustration

  12. Many thanks! This really works and o much easier and better than searching in the apple support, nice simple solution . Thanks again as saved great frustration

  13. Thanks a million for this. A quick and reliable tip got me going again right away. Well done – I was starting to panic there for a moment!

  14. thanks, very helpful! I want to add the following hint – i found out that the problem on my iPad caused by a rental video. if you have a blank screen, just sync some videos via Itunes. then follow the way as described (find video through the search function on the ipad). WORKS.. hehe

  15. Thanks a million bro, it worked for me, but my video still keep crashing and I have to repeat this every time it happens.

  16. Great! Tip #1 saved my day today. Not at home and little one wants to see her Sesame street :-)
    Thank you so much!

  17. Thanks. I didn’t have time to make an appointment at the Genius Bar as I’m moving. Your trick worked like a charm. Too bad Apple isn’t posting this on their website, where there are many people posting who seem to have this same problem.

  18. “If it doesn’t then I’m afraid, you probably have to do a full restore of your iPad.”

    There is one more quite simple solution. You just have to delete all videos in your computer iTunes list (without deleting real files of course). Next syncing will erase all videos on iPad. The last step is adding new videos to iTunes library and syncing iPad.

  19. I tried the first step and when I wrote the name of the video ,it came up and when I tapped it ,it once again came blank black screen.then I tried the second step ,I didn’t have any video there any other suggestions i could try?

  20. Thank you very much, I have a 4 hour flight ahead of me, thought I was going to snap just then. It works!

  21. Phew! Was in a complete panic as every time I tried the videos app I got the “black screen”. I had done a search and found a video but when I hit the video it just went back to black! In the end, I turned off the iPad, turned it back on BUT held my finger on the power button till it had fired up and THEN ran a search for a video I knew was on the pad – it found it and played it through the video app. I could then see all my other videos. The app works fine now – thanks for the help and reassurance that I wasn’t alone in my blank black screen issue!

  22. This worked just finee. . . I had more trouble ifnding out which was the h9me screen but with at little help from youtube now I know! Thank you Thank you,,,,,thankyou!

  23. None of this is working. I refuse to reset this thing. Apple, you can’t be serious with this?

  24. Holy Cow. You are a genius. I was about to toss the iPad across the room. ;) Thanks.

  25. The search solution is working anymore. I think it’s not working since the ios 5 update.

  26. Nothing is working for me. The screen remains blackened out. A reset is such an inconvenience.

  27. Bless your heart! I loaded up before 25 hrs of flight time and thought I was reduced to angry birds. The search worked like a charm.

  28. Thanks for this. For me, actually though, none of these worked for me. I think it might actually be the video because it just stopped in the middle of the show. Anyway, I did the search thing and it didn’t work. The only way that I can get out is to search for a different video, which will start playing. That just means that I can’t finish watching the show that I was until I get back home in February. I’m studying abroad at the moment. Doesn’t that suck?

  29. Thank you very much.

    I tried your suggestions a couple of times before I got one to work.

    (The “restart from the beginning/start from last playing” trick didn’t work for me.)

    Here is my process step-by-steo for all of the rest of you that are as hopeless as I am with this kind of thing:

    I used “search” to find a film.
    I started the film.
    I tapped the screen to open controls and hit “pause.”
    I then hit “done” at the top left.
    I then hit “movies” at the top left.
    At this point all films are visible and accessible again.
    Hit “home” and now you can use the normal “videos” button again to access them.

  30. Thanks! The search worked! And before it crashed pressing the home button during playback. Thanks one more time!

  31. Thank you so much for the “search” solution. Was about to board an airplane and have no videos for my 4 year old to watch. You are a lifesaver!!

  32. Thank you so much for the “search”solution. I’m in the middle of the NE Irene blackout and was going frackin nuts without my videos. Ty!!!!!!

  33. Thanks a billion, search worked, after an initial heart failure, you saved my life – all my toddlers films were there :)

  34. Search worked great for me too. Before I did it I reset the player to “play from the beginning.” Pretty sure I had toggled out without hitting “done” in the player, so I will be sure to do that from now on as well. Thanks!

  35. It worked.. Was thinking of restoring and going thtu the lenghty process.. Thanks a ton

  36. Thanks a lot for your tip.the search worked perfectly fine!!!you are a star

  37. If this trick doen’t work, here is another that works every time with me :
    1) in config, change the video playback to “re-start from begining”
    2) hard-reboot the ipad (very long press on home + lock buttons)
    3) start the video app. Should work. If not, change to “start from last playing”, hard-reboot, and go to step 1

    Note this happen on my iPad every time pressing the home button during playback. If I stop the video and the get back to home –> no problem.

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