iPhone 5S Users Report ‘Blue Screen Of Death’ Bug

Some iOS 7 users have encountered a bug that reboots the iPhone 5S when using iDrop or iWork

Apple iPhone 5S users continue to discover new bugs in iOS 7, the latest of which has been dubbed the “blue screen of death”, or BSOD.

As early as 24 September, users began posting to online discussion boards in confusion about the BSOD, which appears to be tied to iDrop, “an entirely new way to quickly and easily share content with people nearby”, as Apple described the feature in a 10 September statement, and iWork, the productivity suite that it made a show of offering for free – with iLife, iMovie and iPhone – on 10 September.

Blue screen

“We were having troubles getting anything to show up, and while I was messing with the settings, my screen flickered to a bright blue blank screen and then power-cycled,” wrote user GeekMoxie on iMore Forums on 24 September. The user was trying to get AirDrop to work between two iPhone 5 devices.

AppleStoreLogoReverseGeek.com reported on 11 October that several other users have encountered the BSOD when switching between iWorks applications.

On the Apple Support Communities forum, another user posted, “How do I resolve the blue screen error while using iWork on my iPhone 5S? When I use Pages, for example, and press the home button to switch apps, my iPhone restarts after a blue screen.”

Another forum user sympathised with this: “I am having the same issue. I tried the ‘turn off Pages access to iCloud’ but that did not solve the issue, and I am still getting the blue screen of death with Pages on the iPhone. Pages runs fine on my iPad.”

A fix, said forum user Gurinders, is to turn off Pages, Numbers and Keynote from iCloud’s documents and data. “It worked on mine,” he wrote.

User Data Wrangler added that “double [clicking] to switch apps also appears to work”.


Geek.com was kind enough to point out that the offending screen could be more offensive. “In fairness to iOS honcho Jony Ive, it’s a minimalist take on the BSOD. There’s no bothersome text output cluttering up the screen, just a bright blue hue from edge to edge.”

Apple has yet to comment on the matter.

BSOD is hardly the only bug that’s been found in Apple’s latest mobile platform. Days after its release, one user discovered a way to bypass the lock screen – by swiping repeatedly to the Control Centre and then opening the alarm clock and holding down the phone’s sleep button.

Another bug was discovered involving the Touch ID fingerprint sensor. The Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg pointed it out while reviewing the iPhone 5S. “Sometimes, while trying to use a finger to authenticate an online purchase, the phone asks for a password,” he wrote on 17 September. “Apple says it expects to fix this bug very quickly.”

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Originally published on eWeek.