Some iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max Devices Won’t Start to Charge While Screen is Turned Off

A number of iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max owners in the Apple Support Communities and MacRumors Forums report that the devices fail to start charging when a Lightning cable is plugged in while the screen is turned off.


As with many crowdsourced issues, experiences vary. In most cases, the iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max begins charging once the user wakes the device by tapping or raising the screen. However, some users report having to both wake the iPhone and disconnect and reconnect the Lightning cable to get a charge.

In rarer cases, the iPhone stops responding entirely at some point after a Lightning cable is plugged in while the screen is turned off.

Lewis Hilsenteger demonstrated the issue on his popular YouTube channel Unbox Therapy today by plugging a Lightning cable into one iPhone X, four iPhone XS, and four iPhone XS Max units. While the iPhone X began to charge, it appears two of the iPhone XS units and three of the iPhone XS Max units did not.

Unbox Therapy's video uses the hashtag #ChargeGate

Affected customers have documented the issue in at least a dozen discussion threads across the web, including the Apple Support Communities, MacRumors Forums, Reddit, Twitter, YouTube, and other forums and platforms. It's unclear how widespread the issue is at this time, but not everyone is affected.

Some users have speculated the issue could be related to USB Restricted Mode, introduced in iOS 11.4.1, which prevents an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch from communicating with USB accessories via the Lightning connector if one hour or longer has passed since the device was last unlocked.


However, while USB Restricted Mode is enabled by default in iOS 12, Hilsenteger and others say disabling the feature does not help. Apple also has a support document that ensures "your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch charges as usual when it's connected to a USB power adapter" with the feature toggled on.

In the YouTube comments on the Unbox Therapy video, some users claim to be experiencing the same issue on older iPhones and iPads, so there is a decent chance this is a software issue that could be addressed in a future iOS 12 update. In the meantime, there does not appear to be a workaround.

If you are affected by this issue, we recommend contacting Apple Support. Apple frequently passes on device information and diagnostics to its engineering teams to address potential bugs like these, so all feedback helps.

Apple did not respond to multiple requests for comment, but we'll update this article if we receive any information.

Related Roundup: iPhone XS
Buyer's Guide: iPhone XS (Buy Now)

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Complex Passcode Bypass Method Exposes iPhone Contacts and Photos in iOS 12

A passcode bypass vulnerability has been discovered in iOS 12 that potentially allows an attacker to access photos and contact details on a locked iPhone.

The rather convoluted bypass method was shared in a video by Jose Rodriguez, who has discovered iOS bugs in the past that Apple has subsequently fixed.


With physical access to the locked device, the attacker first asks Siri to activate VoiceOver, sleeps the device with the Side button, and then calls the iPhone using another device. Once the call screen shows up, the attacker taps the Message button, opts to create a custom message, and then taps the plus (+) icon in the top right.

Next, on the other phone, the attacker sends a text or iMessage to the target iPhone, whose screen is then double-tapped when the message notification appears. This causes an odd behavior in the UI, since it highlights the plus icon underneath.

After a short wait, the screen goes white and the notification disappears, but the VoiceOver's text selection box is apparently still tappable and can now be used to access the Messages interface. Following multiple screen swipes, the VoiceOver is heard to say "Cancel," which reveals the original Messages screen.


Adding a new recipient to the message and selecting a numeral from the virtual keyboard then reveals a list of recently dialed or received phone numbers and contacts. Further, if one of the numbers or contacts includes an info ("i") button, disabling VoiceOver and tapping the button shows the contact's information. Performing a 3D Touch action on the contact also brings up call and message options, along with options to Add to Existing Contact or Create New Contact.

In a similarly complicated set of steps involving an invisible user menu, an attacker can eventually access a locked iPhone's Camera Roll and other photo folders, which can then be used to add profile pictures to contact cards.

The bypass methods work on all iPhones including the iPhone XS lineup, but Apple doesn't appear to have fixed the vulnerabilities in the latest iOS 12.1 beta. Thankfully however, all of the above can be easily prevented by disabling access to Siri from the lock screen.

Concerned users can do so by navigating to Settings > Face ID & Passcode (that's Settings > Touch ID & Passcode on iPhones with Touch ID) and disabling the Siri toggle under the "Allow access when locked" menu.


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Telegram 5 Gains In-App Notifications and Swift Code Rebuild for Faster Speeds

Telegram received a major update today that includes new in-app notifications and a complete rewrite of the encrypted messaging app in Apple's Swift coding language, resulting in all-round faster performance and better energy efficiency.


On the face of it, the Telegram 5.0 interface looks just like the previous version, but the developers say that rebuilding the app in Swift has made it "faster, sleeker and more battery-friendly," and has also removed a bunch of persistent bugs.

The speed improvements should be immediately noticeable, particularly when viewing animations in chat threads and syncing messages across multiple devices. At the same time, the new in-app notifications allow users to keep on top of new messages without leaving conversations. From the Telegram blog:
The new expandable in-app notifications will help you focus on whatever you're doing in the app without having to ignore incoming messages. When a notification arrives, pull it down to open the relevant chat. When you’re done with the interruption, simply close it to get right back to what you were doing.
Elsewhere, the app now includes streaming support for audio files and improved navigation for busy chats, while the app icon message counter has been tweaked so that it no longer shows the number of unread messages in muted chats, which should make it a lot more informative.

Telegram is a free download for iPhone and iPad from the App Store. [Direct Link]


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Watch the Apple Watch Series 4 Smoke Older Apple Watches in Speed Comparison

The Apple Watch Series 4, launched last week, features a new dual-core S4 chip that's significantly faster than the S3 chip in the Series 3, and, of course, the chips used in older Apple Watch models.

We did a side-by-side comparison of the Apple Watch Series 4 to the original Apple Watch, the Series 1 models, the Series 2 models, and the Apple Watch Series 3 to see how far the Apple Watch has come since it was first introduced in 2015.

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According to Apple, the fourth-generation dual-core 64-bit Silicon-in-Package or SIP chip in the Apple Watch is twice as fast as the previous-generation S3 chip. Its improved efficiency and speed allow for better battery conservation and new health-related features like ECG readings.

In our testing, we compared Apple Watch tasks like booting up, opening apps, and activating Siri to demonstrate the speed differences between each generation.

Unsurprisingly, the Series 4 was the fastest, but for a lot of tasks, there weren't huge speed differences between the Series 4 and the Series 3.

When comparing the Series 4 to the Series 2 and older, though, you can see the impressive improvements Apple has made to the processor over the course of the last three years. While it took the Apple Watch Series 4 40 seconds to boot up, it took the Series 2 almost four minutes, the Series 1 three minutes, and the Series 0 five minutes.

When opening up apps, we didn't see a huge difference between the Series 3 and Series 4 for most tests, but the Series 4 was always just a little bit faster. On Series 2 and older, apps took a good deal longer to open, and in some cases, like with the original Apple Watch, apps took so long we gave up.

So, what can we learn from this? You may not see major speed changes when upgrading to Series 4 from Series 3, though everything will feel snappier.

You will, however, notice an incredible difference upgrading from an original Apple Watch, Series 1 model, or Series 2 model, which makes upgrading from one of these older devices worthwhile.

In our opinion, if you're considering upgrading from a Series 2 or earlier to the Series 4, do it. The speed changes are so drastic that using the Apple Watch Series 4 is an entirely different experience than using an older Apple Watch.

Have you upgraded to a Series 4 from an older Apple Watch model? Let us know what you think about the new device in the comments below.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 5
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Buy Now)

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iPhone XS Users Complain About Skin-Smoothing Selfie Camera

Over the course of the last week, the front-facing camera in the iPhone XS and XS Max has been receiving a lot of attention because the selfies captured on the new devices are drastically different from those captured with the iPhone X or earlier iPhone models.

In a MacRumors forum thread and on Reddit, Apple has been accused of using a skin-smoothing feature or a "beauty filter" for prettier selfies from the front-facing camera. The effect was demoed by a Reddit user in the image below:


We covered the issue in our recent iPhone XS Max vs. iPhone X camera comparison, where we did see the smoothing effect, but the front-facing camera's performance has garnered so much attention since then that we wanted to more prominently highlight the problem.

When taking a selfie in a situation where lighting is less than ideal, such as indoors or outdoors in areas with lower lighting, the iPhone XS Max appears to be applying a drastic smoothing effect that can hide freckles, blemishes, and other issues.

In full outdoor lighting the problem is less apparent, which has led to speculation that the skin smoothing is actually a result of some heavy-handed noise reduction techniques.

You can test the new camera yourself with an iPhone XS Max and an older iPhone like an iPhone X model by taking selfies indoors and outdoors and comparing the differences between the two. In almost all cases where the lighting is low or uneven, photos captured with an iPhone XS Max look dramatically different.

It makes sense that we'd see differences between the iPhone XS Max and say, an iPhone 8 because the front-facing cameras are different, but as far as we know, the iPhone X and XS are using the same 7-megapixel front-facing camera. Apple detailed several changes to the rear-facing camera in the iPhone XS models, but beyond a new Neural Engine, there were no announced changes to the TrueDepth camera system.

Because the camera is the same, Apple is doing something different with the way photos are processed after being captured, which could be related to the new HDR features that have been implemented. Apple has a new A12 chip and next-generation Neural Engine that are aiding in photo processing to enable a Smart HDR feature that applies to both the rear and front-facing cameras.

Turning off HDR does not remove the smoothing effect, nor does tweaking any other camera setting, so if the ultra skin smoothing is a result of something like unintentional excessive noise reduction, it needs to be tweaked on Apple's end through a software update. YouTuber Unbox Therapy recently demoed the issue with a series of selfies.


While it's mostly the front-facing camera that's been under scrutiny, this is a problem that affects both the front-facing and rear-facing cameras and it's not entirely limited to skin. Excessive smoothing can be seen affecting other images as well.

There has been speculation that Apple intentionally implemented the skin smoothing feature to mimic the beauty mode that's popular in Asia and common on some other smartphones, but it's not clear if that was Apple's intention.

Many MacRumors readers and Reddit users have reported the issue to Apple, and given that this issue has received so much attention, we may see front-facing camera tweaks in a future iOS update.

Related Roundup: iPhone XS
Buyer's Guide: iPhone XS (Buy Now)

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U.S. International Trade Commission Declines to Block iPhone Imports in Ongoing Apple v. Qualcomm Case

The United States International Trade Commission will not be blocking imports of the iPhone in the ongoing Apple v. Qualcomm case, reports Reuters.

Qualcomm had asked the ITC to ban imports of the AT&T and T-Mobile iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X models that use chips from Intel, citing multiple patent violations.


Qualcomm did not ask for a ban on iPhones that use Qualcomm LTE chips, with the reasoning that a more limited exclusion order was more likely to be granted.

An ITC judge said on Friday that while Apple's iPhones infringe on a patent related to power management technology, a ban will not be put in place. The judge cited "public interest factors" as one of the reasons why the court ruled against Qualcomm.

Neither Apple nor Qualcomm have commented on the decision as of yet, but it marks a major victory for Apple in its months-long legal battle with Qualcomm.

The two companies have been embroiled in an increasingly tense legal feud that kicked off in January 2017. Qualcomm and Apple have filed several more than a dozen lawsuits against one another since then.

Apple has accused Qualcomm of charging unfair royalties for "technologies they have nothing to do with," while Qualcomm claims that its inventions form the "very core" of modern mobile communication.

Earlier this week, Qualcomm further escalated the dispute by accusing Apple of providing confidential trade information and trade secrets stolen from Qualcomm to Intel.


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Apple Shares New ‘Growth Spurt’ iPhone XS and XS Max Ad

Apple this afternoon shared a new iPhone XS and XS Max ad called "Growth Spurt," which is a nod to the larger screen size of the 6.5-inch iPhone XS Max.

In the minute-long spot, everything that's photographed with the new iPhone XS Max grows to an enormous size, including a cat, an avocado toast, a corgi, a woman, a golf ball, a pot sticker, a cookie, a fish, and more.


AdWeek got the inside scoop on the ad, which was directed by John Hillcoat, who also directed Cannes Lions-winning film Corazón. The video uses the song "Catch My Breath" by Confidence Man."

Since the launch of the iPhone XS and XS Max, Apple has shared several videos showing off the two new devices, including a guided tour, a feature video, a video focused on photography, and more.

Apple's two new devices, which feature an upgraded A12 chip, better photography capabilities, Face ID, and more, launched last week and are now available for purchase online and in Apple retail stores.

Related Roundup: iPhone XS
Buyer's Guide: iPhone XS (Buy Now)

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MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Futuristic ‘Tap’ Wearable Keyboard

For this week's giveaway, we've teamed up with Tap to give MacRumors readers a chance to win one of the company's Tap Keyboard & Mouse setups.

The Tap, priced at $179, is a futuristic keyboard that you wear on your hands, using a series of finger taps to type different letters, numbers, and symbols.


Tap fits over your thumb and each of your fingers, with adjustable rings that can fit a wide variety of fingers. Sensors are built into each finger ring to detect the movement of your fingers, translating gestures into words for a novel, type anywhere experience.


There are different taps for each letter. A single tap of the thumb, for example, creates an A, while a tap of the index finger makes an E. To create a K, you tap your thumb and ring finger, and to create a B, you tap your index and pinky fingers at the same time.


Learning to use the Tap Keyboard takes just a few days thanks to a well-developed iOS app that walks you through each gesture one by one and then gamifies the learning experience by requiring you to beat tapping mini games.

We reviewed the Tap Keyboard earlier this year and were able to learn the taps in about a week with 30 minutes of practice per day.


Mastering the Tap keyboard will take some time, weeks to months, perhaps, but your typing will get faster as your fingers get used to the gestures. Some Tap users can type up to 60 words per minute, mimicking traditional keyboard speeds. Tap can also be used as a mouse replacement in a special mouse mode that involves using the thumb.


Tap works as a keyboard replacement on all of your iOS and Mac devices, like any other Bluetooth keyboard. There are also select Tap games that have Tap support and are played using unique tap gestures. Tap is fully customizable, so you can create Tap Maps for different games and use cases.


We have two of the Tap Keyboards to give away to MacRumors readers. To enter to win, use the Rafflecopter widget below and enter an email address. Email addresses will be used solely for contact purposes to reach the winners and send the prizes. You can earn additional entries by subscribing to our weekly newsletter, subscribing to our YouTube channel, following us on Twitter, or visiting the MacRumors Facebook page.

Due to the complexities of international laws regarding giveaways, only U.S. residents who are 18 years or older and Canadian residents (excluding Quebec) who have reached the age of majority in their province or territory are eligible to enter. To offer feedback or get more information on the giveaway restrictions, please refer to our Site Feedback section, as that is where discussion of the rules will be redirected.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
The contest will run from today (September 28) at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time through 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time on October 5. The winners will be chosen randomly on October 5 and will be contacted by email. The winners will have 48 hours to respond and provide a shipping address before new winners are chosen.


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Facebook Uncovers ‘Security Issue’ Affecting Nearly 50 Million Accounts

Facebook this morning announced that its engineering team on Tuesday discovered that hackers have exploited a vulnerability in its code, allowing hackers to steal Facebook access tokens for almost 50 million accounts.

According to Facebook, hackers took advantage of security flaws in its "View As" code, which is a feature designed to let people see what their profile looks like to someone else. The Facebook access tokens that were stolen are digital keys that allow people to stay logged in to Facebook.

This attack exploited the complex interaction of multiple issues in our code. It stemmed from a change we made to our video uploading feature in July 2017, which impacted "View As." The attackers not only needed to find this vulnerability and use it to get an access token, they then had to pivot from that account to others to steal more tokens.
It is not clear whether the accounts affected were misused or have had information accessed at this time, and Facebook does not know who executed the attacks.

Facebook says that the vulnerability has been patched at this time, and authorities have been informed. Facebook has reset the access tokens of the nearly 50 million accounts that were affected along with another 40 million accounts that have been subject to a "View As" lookup in the last year.

Customers who have been logged out of their apps will receive a message about what happened once they log back in.

While a security review is conducted, Facebook is turning off the "View As" feature that was used for the hack.

Facebook says that it is "sorry this happened" and that people's privacy and security "is incredibly important." No one needs to change their passwords, according to Facebook, but those concerned can visit the "Security and Login" section in settings to log out of all devices at once.

Today's Facebook hack comes just a day after Facebook was found to be using phone numbers that customers provided for 2-factor authentication for ad targeting purposes and shadow contact building.


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Front Camera Lens on Future iPhones Could Be Invisible With Special ‘Pure Black’ Coating

iPhone camera lens supplier Largan Precision is developing a special black coating for front-facing smartphone camera lenses, according to Jeff Pu, an analyst at Chinese investment firm GF Securities.


Pu's research note, shared by Taiwanese publications Economic Daily News and MoneyDJ, claims that one or two smartphone makers could adopt the technology as early as 2020. Given that Largan already has a relationship with Apple, it is speculated that the special coating could be applied to future iPhones.

A translated version of the Economic Daily News report says the special coating would allow the front camera lens to "completely disappear." A translation of the MoneyDJ report says the coating will be "pure black," eliminating the "small spots" like those visible in the notch on the iPhone X and newer.

The front camera lens already blends into the notch pretty well on iPhones, but it is visible from certain angles and lighting conditions. The special coating would presumably make the lens completely invisible to the eye.

Apple design chief Jony Ive has long dreamed of an iPhone that resembles a single sheet of glass, and hiding the front camera lens would be yet another step towards that goal, even if it sounds like an insignificant change. This is the first time we've heard this rumor, however, so treat it with some skepticism.


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