Some owners of Apple’s new iPhone X are finding an unusual bug in their $1,000 piece of kit — answering the phone.
Apple’s three-month-old flagship device boasts a brand new design, can be unlocked with a glance thanks to sophisticated facial recognition software, and has been hailed by chief executive Tim Cook as preparing the iPhone for its second decade.
However, hundreds of owners have complained on Apple forums that their pocket supercomputer cannot accomplish the most basic task that even a $10 phone can, namely taking an incoming call.
When it rings, the iPhone’s touchscreen appears to be delayed from turning on for up to 10 seconds, preventing the user from tapping the virtual button required to answer a call.
“Whenever I receive an incoming call in my iPhone X, ringtones start but the display comes in after 6-8 seconds,” says one user on Apple’s support pages.
Hundreds of other customers on that post and similar complaints on Apple’s forums have indicated they are suffering the same problem.
“I can often not see an incoming call coming, can only hear it! At other times, there is a significant delay 🙁 ,” reads another post.
Apple said that it was “looking into these reports”.
The bug is the latest problem to plague Apple’s tenth-anniversary smartphone after production delays pushed back its launch from the iPhone’s usual September debut and follows reports of underwhelming sales volumes that have sent its shares plunging in recent days.
A 4 per cent drop in Apple’s stock on Friday sent it into what is known on Wall Street as a “correction” — a 10 per cent decline over sequential days. The move is Apple’s first correction in more than a year and came amid a broader market sell-off on Friday.
The latest stock slump followed Thursday’s earnings report which saw iPhone units fall by 1 per cent in the crucial holiday quarter, missing analysts’ forecasts, even as net profits of $20bn beat market expectations.
Nonetheless, Mr Cook insisted on Thursday that customer satisfaction was “off the charts” for the iPhone X. He pointed to a study by market researcher 451 Research that found US customer satisfaction ratings of 96 per cent or higher for all iPhones.
Concerns are growing about the longer-term prospects for the iPhone X, which quality issues such as the incoming call bug will only amplify. Apple forecast sales for the three months to March of $60bn-$62bn, several billion dollars less than Wall Street had been expecting.
Rumours from the supply chain of Apple’s order cuts are intensifying and have now extended into the June quarter, after the publication Business Korea suggested on Friday that it may discontinue the iPhone X altogether in September.
Complaints among Apple customers about its software quality have also been steadily mounting in recent months. In December, it rushed to patch a significant security flaw in its Mac operating system, forcing a rare apology from Apple.
Last week, news site Axios reported that Apple was delaying feature improvements from the next version of the iPhone’s operating system, iOS, in order to focus on underlying performance and reliability.
On Friday, Apple said it would offer free repairs to a “small percentage” of iPhone 7 owners whose devices indicated they had no cellular service, even when wireless coverage was available.