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New iOS bug can disable iMessage and crash iPhones with a string of characters

Apple iOS has a bug capable of crashing iPhone and disabling iMessage with a special string of characters.

  • Published: February 15, 2018 6:05 PM IST
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Apple and its software woes don’t seem to have an end. The Cupertino-based iPhone maker had a disappointing run in terms of software towards the end of 2017, and that bad omen seems to be continuing well into 2018.

A new bug has been found on iOS 11 that lets people send a specific character and it will crash an iPhone by locking access to Messages app in iOS. The bug was first spotted by Italian blog Mobile World and The Verge‘s Tom Warren says that the bug has been tested successfully on multiple iPhones running iOS 11.2.5.

The bug involves sending an Indian character to devices and Apple’s iOS Springboard will crash once the message is received. The messages app will no longer open since the app tries and fails to load the characters just received on the device. The only way to regain access to your iMessage is by asking another friend to send a message and then delete the thread containing the characters crashing iMessage.

Interestingly, the public beta versions of iOS 11.1 are not affected by the bug, which means Apple is aware of the issue and a fix is coming soon. However, this isn’t the first time that iOS has crashed due to a bad link or characters or video message.

Last month, Apple’s mobile operating system was found affected by a ‘ChaiOS’ bug that had the potential to freeze your iPhone with a single link. Apple addressed the bug with the release of iOS 11.2.5. In 2015, a tiny string of text disabled iMessage while a 5-second video crashed iPhones in 2016. Apple’s own software release has been buggy lately with users reporting crashed iPhones in December after updating iOS. Apple then pushed a significant iOS update to remove the bug.

A report recently claimed that Apple is shifting its focus from major features to stability and performance with the next release of iOS. With iOS 12, Apple is not planning to release every major feature at once and will be pushed via future updates. With the renewed approach, Apple is said to be putting security and reliability as a priority over new features in both iOS and macOS.

  • Published Date: February 15, 2018 6:05 PM IST