We’re big fans of Apple’s iOS 12, and if you haven’t moved on to (infamously buggy) iOS 13 or the upcoming iOS 14 beta, there’s still a lot to love about this iteration – and Apple continues to keep it updated. But it’s not always perfect. Some people have reported problems with it, from slight irritations to glitches to show-stopping bugs, why we’ve put together this guide – to find the biggest iOS 12 issues and try to identify a way to fix them, or at least work around them.
Problem: End call and fail with the mobile connection
There have been several threads on Apple support forums about mobile connectivity issues, and sometimes also Wi-Fi. Many of them seem to focus on the iPhone XR, but there are other models mentioned as well. There is probably more than one problem here, but the troubleshooting steps are the same.
- Take a look Settings> Mobile data (or mobile data) and try turning off Wi-Fi Assist at the bottom and also Wi-Fi calling if they are on. This seems to have helped some people.
- Sometimes a simple restart will help, so try turning off and turning on your iPhone before you do anything else.
- Open Settings> General> About and if you need to update, you should get a popup saying that you can update your operator settings or that an operator update is available.
- Check that your operator settings are correct by looking in Settings> Mobile data (or mobile data)> Mobile data options (or mobile data options)> Mobile networks (or mobile data networks). You can Google your carrier̵7;s APN settings or contact them directly to make sure they are correct. Just click on each field to edit, if they need to be changed. Note You may not be able to access or edit these settings – it depends on your operator.
- Try going to Settings> General> Reset and press Reset network settings, then test to see if it helped.
- If nothing has worked, it’s time to contact your operator.
Problem: iMessage which combines threads from different contacts
We’ve seen some threads on the Apple Support forum about iMessage that combine conversation threads that come from different contacts. It seems to merge conversations into a single thread, and replying to the thread sends the message to the last person who notified you.
- It turns out that this is actually intended to be a feature of iOS 12 to create a unified message thread for contacts with multiple numbers or email addresses. The problem is that it combines messages from someone with the same Apple ID, provided they are the same person, which is often not the case, as many share the Apple ID. Apple reversed this automatic combination in iOS 12.1, so the easiest way to fix it is to update. Make sure your iPhone is charged and connected to Wi-Fi and go to Settings> General> Software Update. It’s worth noting that the issue may occur if not everyone in the message thread updates to iOS 12.1.
- Make sure everyone in the thread that is merged uses a separate Apple ID.
Glitch: The phone app freezes
We’ve seen some reports on the Phone app that freezes after people have been updated to iOS 12. The Phone app simply freezes and becomes unresponsive, even after people are forced to quit and reload.
- Turning off and turning on your iPhone seems to temporarily fix the problem, but the error may come back.
- Some report that they can still call Siri.
- Some report that the update to iOS 12.1 solved this problem. Try it via Settings> General> Software Update.
- You may need to update through iTunes to resolve the issue. If the OTA update did not work for you, then try connecting to your computer or laptop and use the latest version of iTunes to update your iPhone. You can find full iOS update instructions here, just scroll down to the iTunes section and install the latest iOS 12.1.
Problem: The battery is draining faster
We’ve seen some threads on the Apple Support forum about iPad and iPhone batteries dropping faster than before after updating to iOS 12 and subsequent versions like iOS 12.3.1. This is a very common problem that we always see picked up after software updates.
- Take a look Settings> Battery and scroll down to see Battery consumption per app. If there is an obvious cause for the drain, check for an update available for that app. You can check by opening App Store and tap updates on the bottom. If there is no update, consider uninstalling the app and trying to find an option.
- Check out how to save battery life on your iPhone for more tips.
- As a last resort, you can try to back up and then factory reset your iPhone.
Irritation: The display colors look off
A number of users on Reddit have reported that the display on their phones after installing iOS 12 looks a bit “off.” Colors look a bit washed out, and it’s just not as vivid as it used to be. The issue seems to be affecting iPhone X the most. Speculation suggests the problem has something to do with the new iOS display profile on iPhone X, but it’s far from a security issue.
Unfortunately, there seems to be a solution to this problem right now. It is possible that Apple will solve the problem in a future iOS update.
- Check in Settings> General> Accessibility to make sure that Increase the contrast is off.
Problem: Bluetooth is not working
After the update, some people notice that the Bluetooth icon has disappeared from the status bar. While not a problem in itself, others report that Bluetooth simply doesn’t work on iOS 12.
- Go to Settings> Bluetooth and turn Bluetooth off and then on again.
- If that doesn’t work, go to Settings> General> Reset> Reset Network Settings, then try connecting again. Note that this also requires you to reconfigure your Wi-Fi connections.
- Try removing old Bluetooth profiles from the device you are connecting to, make sure the firmware is up to date, and make sure you enter pairing mode correctly.
Glitch: Apps crash more than usual
There have been some reports suggesting that the update to iOS 12 causes some apps to crash much more than usual. The problem may be due to several reasons. For example, the apps in question may not have been tested or updated properly to work with iOS 12.
- Open App Store and press updates from the menu bar. Update all apps that have updates available.
- Force quit the app and then restart it.
- Restart your iPhone.
- Try uninstalling all problem apps and then reinstalling them.
Glitch: Group FaceTime is not available or working properly
Some of the iOS 12 2019 updates included serious Facetime issues, including a bug that makes people eavesdrop. Much of this has been addressed, but the 2020 updates still include some FaceTime issues.
- Make sure you have the latest update. Apple blocked Group FaceTime from working for a while, and unless you have newer iOS 12 updates, it’s probably off for you.
- Remember that everyone else in a group must have the latest update as well.
- Turn off FaceTime completely and restart it.
- If FaceTime freezes or crashes, try a full power switch and restart your iPhone to see if this helps the situation.
Glitch: Touch ID does not work
Some of the latest updates to iOS 12 may affect Touch ID. If your Touch ID suddenly stops working, don’t worry: Log in with your password and try these solutions to make sure everything works correctly.
- First, go through the basics. Is your phone on? Does your battery have power? Is the Touch ID button covered with oils, debris or dirt that needs to be cleaned? Are your fingers wet?
- If none of the basics work, it’s time to redo your fingerprints. Go to iOS settings, also enter Touch ID and password section. You may need to log in again at this point for security reasons. In the new window, you will see the fingerprint profiles on your device (usually just one for most iPhone users). Choose your profile and choose to Delete fingerprints. You then need to add a new fingerprint, which of course can be the same as the old one. This tends to solve Touch ID problems.
- If nothing works, it could be a hardware problem (did your phone get wet recently?) And you should probably arrange to take it to an Apple Store.
Issue: iOS 12 gets stuck in landscape mode
When you change the phone you can see that it gets stuck in landscape mode (for example when taking a photo) and refuses to go back to portrait mode. It’s a problem that has become more common with the latest versions of iOS 12, but fortunately the fix should be fairly simple.
- Turn off the phone and turn it back on. Just going to the lock screen is usually enough.
- Shut down and restart.
- Sometimes this problem can be caused by iOS’s visual effects. If that continues to happen, go to yours settings, go to Generaland go to Availability section. Here you are looking for an alternative that says Reduce Exercise. Make sure this is turned off and see if it helps.
Issue: The latest iOS 12 update does not work
Another recent problem users have experienced is a problem installing the latest 2020 iOS 12 updates. When this happens, people try to install an update and it freezes or crashes their iPhone. They may also receive a message that an error occurred while trying to install the update, or the update may just never seem to end.
- Perform a hard reset. There is really no other way to get out of a frozen update, and a reboot can help iOS clean the spider web and install the new version properly. On most iOS-12-era iPhones, you can do a hard reset by holding down the Home button and the power button for several seconds until the screen turns black and the iPhone starts to restart.
- Make sure your Wi-Fi Internet connection is working.
- Connect your iPhone to a charger and try again.
Hopefully, your iOS 12 problem is resolved and your iPhone or iPad returns to normal. Now you can learn how to make the most of it with our handy iOS 12 tips and tricks.