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iPhone XS Problems: 5 Things to Know

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Apple’s iOS 12.4 update could help, or hurt, your device’s performance. iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max owners are dealing with a variety of problems after moving to the latest firmware.

Those who’ve picked up Apple’s 2018 flagships are complaining about connectivity issues, activation problems, Bluetooth issues, Wi-Fi issues, and more.

The list of problems is growing and we expect it to get larger as more people decide to buy the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Plus in 2019 and beyond.

In this guide we’ll take you through the most common problems plaguing the two models. We’ll also provide you with some tips and resources that will come in handy if and when you start noticing issues on your device.

iPhone XS Problems

Some iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max users are still dealing with activation problems. Activation issues are extremely common so if you’re having trouble activating your new phone there’s no need to panic.

If you’re unable to activate your iPhone right now, check Apple’s System Status page. If it’s not green, you’ll want to wait until it’s green and then try again.

If it’s green and it’s still not working, make sure you have a SIM card in your iPhone. If you’re getting a “No Sim” or “Invalid SIM” error you’ll want to head here for help.

On top of that, we’re hearing about iCloud Restore problems. This is also a common issue with new phones and it can be rather tricky to fix. If you run into issues restoring from iCloud, head here for a few potential fixes.

iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max users are also complaining about problems setting up Face ID, problems with iCloud, Wi-Fi problems, sound problems, cellular data issues, and Bluetooth issues.

Where to Find Feedback

If you start noticing issues on your iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max, or if you’re thinking about buying one, you’ll want to dig into feedback and fixes from those who have upgraded. There are a few places to do that.

We recommend keeping an eye on YouTube, Apple’s discussion forums, social media sites like Twitter/Facebook, and the MacRumors forums.

How to Fix iPhone XS Problems

If you run into an iPhone XS problem there’s no reason to panic. There’s a very good chance you can fix the issue(s) you’re seeing in a matter of minutes.

If you don’t know where to start, take a look at our list of fixes for the most common iPhone XS problems. This guide outlines fixes that could help you get your experience back on track.

We’ve also released some tips to help you improve your device’s overall performance and a guide that could help you improve your iPhone XS battery life.

If you can’t find a fix for your issue in those walkthroughs, you’ll want to check Apple’s discussion forums for potential fixes.

If you’d prefer to get in touch with Apple, you can do so via the company’s support account on Twitter. You can also get in contact with Apple Support via the company’s website.

If Apple’s frontline customer service can’t fix your problem, you might want to take your phone into your local Apple Store or your local carrier location to see if they can diagnose your issue.

If you’ve got an Apple Store in your area, schedule a Genius Bar appointment and have them run diagnostics on your device to see if they can pinpoint the problem.

Your iPhone XS is under warranty so they might offer you a replacement if they determine there’s a serious defect.

How to Downgrade the iPhone XS

Once you move your iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max to iOS 12.4, you’re stuck there.

Apple is no longer signing on iOS 12.3.1 or iOS 12.3 which means there’s no way to downgrade to either of those updates in an effort to improve your phone’s performance.

If you’re unfamiliar with the process our guide to the iOS 12 downgrade will walk you through everything you need to know for next time.

What’s Next

iOS 12.4 could be the final version of iOS 12.

Apple hasn’t confirmed iOS 12.4.1 or iOS 12.5 which means the iOS 13 update might be next in line for the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max.

Apple confirmed iOS 13 in early June at WWDC 2019 and the update is currently in beta for both the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max.

If you’re really struggling on iOS 12.4 and can’t wait for the next version of iOS, you might want to give the iOS 13 beta a shot. There’s a chance it improves your device’s performance.

We expect the final version of iOS 13 to arrive in September alongside new iPhones.

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 12.4 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iOS 12.4 for Better Security

Install iOS 12.4 for Better Security

If you're on the fence, here's one of the best reasons to install iOS 12.4.

If you value your device's security, you'll want to download iOS 12.4 in the near future because it brings important security patches for your device. 

iOS 12.4 brings 19 security patches to the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. If you're interested in the specifics, you can read about them on Apple's security site

If you skipped iOS 12.3, your iOS 12.4 update carries iOS 12.3's security patches on board. The iOS 12.3 update brought 23 patches and you can read about all of them right here

If you skipped iOS 12.2, you'll get its security patches with your version of iOS 12.4.

iOS 12.2 brought a whopping 41 security patches to iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch in March. You can read more about the iOS 12.2's patches over on the company's website

It's important to note that Apple's iOS 12.2 update patched up an exploit that allowed websites to use motion sensors to "fingerprint" devices.

The exploit, discovered by researchers in Europe, uses JavaScript to snag data from a device's accelerometer, gyroscope, and magnetometer when the user visits an infected website. If the attack is successful, a device can be tracked around the internet. 

Fortunately, Apple's patched up the issue. If you skipped it, you'll probably want to move to iOS 12.4 soon.

If you skipped iOS 12.1.4, you get four important security patches including fixes for a widespread FaceTime eavesdropping bug that lets you call someone via FaceTime and hear the audio coming from their phone before they pick up the phone.

If you skipped iOS 12.1.3, you get some additional patches with your version of iOS 12.4. Again, they're baked into your upgrade.

Apple lists a grand total of 23 patches on board iOS 12.1.3 and you can read about all of them over on Apple's website. 

If you skipped iOS 12.1.1, you'll want to install the iOS 12.4 update on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch today. 

The iOS 12.1.1 update brought 17 patches for potential security exploits. They'll will help protect your phone. You can read about them here.

If you skipped iOS 12.1, you'll get the 24 patches from that update with your version of iOS 12.4. If you skipped iOS 12.0.1, your iOS 12.4 update brings two additional patches. Both patches are for potential lock screen exploits.

If you skipped iOS 12.0, and you're still running iOS 11.4.1 or below, your iOS 12.4 update comes with a longer list of security updates. 

The iOS 12.0 update delivered 16 patches for security issues. You can read about all of them over on Apple's security page.

In addition to those patches, iOS 12 delivers new security features aimed at protecting you and the data you store on your device. These include:

  • Enhanced Intelligent Tracking Prevention in Safari prevents embedded content and social media buttons from tracking cross-site browsing without your permission
  • Suppresses ad retargeting by reducing advertisers’ ability to identify iOS devices uniquely
  • Strong and unique passwords are suggested automatically when creating an account or changing a password in most apps and in Safari
  • Reused passwords are flagged in Settings > Passwords & Accounts
  • Security code AutoFill presents one-time security codes sent over SMS as suggestions in the QuickType bar
  • Sharing passwords with contacts is easier than ever using AirDrop from Passwords & Accounts in Settings
  • Siri supports quickly navigating to a password on an authenticated device 

Long story short, if you store sensitive data on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you have some really good reasons to upgrade to iOS 12.4 today.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Steve

    03/22/2019 at 12:18 am

    With all of the issues you have reported here with iPhone Xs and the software problems why would I want to buy into this nightmare? I’ve been with Apple for years now but it’s probably time to move on. The days of reliable hardware and software are gone. Their vision and support for the customer just isn’t what it used to be. I remember the focus on simple and intuitive software with attention to hardware that lasted years. They have lost it some where along the way….. I’m done with them after reading your articles and everyone else’s opinions online. Too much to deal with for sure. Thanks for the information.

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