How to Fix Common iPhone X Problems

The phone is great but it's not perfect

Photo of Setting up iPhone X on a table full of Apple products

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The iPhone X is a terrific, groundbreaking smartphone — but even great phones have problems. Luckily, almost all of these iPhone X problems are pretty easy to solve.

iPhone X Touchscreen Issues

iPhone X
image credit: Apple Inc.

The bright, gorgeous "edge-to-edge" OLED screen on the iPhone is one of its major new features, but the touchscreen can sometimes stop working correctly. The two most common situations are:

Non-Responsive Screen and "Ghost Touches"

Some users report that the screen on their iPhone X sometimes simply stops working. In those cases, the screen doesn't respond to touches or taps. In other cases, the opposite occurs: "ghost touches" seem to activate things on the screen even when they don't tap it.

If you're experiencing either of those issues, the cause is the same: a hardware problem with the touchscreen chips and sensors in the iPhone X.

Because these problems are caused by a hardware issue, you can't fix them yourself. Luckily, Apple is aware of the problem and is offering to fix it. Learn more about what to do on Apple's page about the issue.

Frozen Screen in Cold Weather

Another kind of iPhone X screen problem that some people run into is that the screen freezes up and becomes unresponsive for a few seconds when going from a warm place to a cold one (such as heading out into a wintery day). The good news here is that this isn't a hardware problem, so it's much easier to fix. Try this:

  1. Update the Operating System. This problem was fixed with the iOS 11.1.2 update, so make sure you're running that version of the operating system or higher. Learn how to update the iOS.

  2. Follow Apple's Cold-Weather Guidelines. Apple has tips and guidelines for the temperatures to use the iPhone in. It recommends not using it in temperatures lower than 32 degrees F (0 degrees C). Keeping your iPhone inside your clothes and close to your body heat is a good, simple fix.

iPhone X Screen Issues

iPhone X
Apple Inc.

The iPhone X was the first iPhone to use the brighter, more efficient OLED screen technology. The screen looks great, but it's prone to some problems that other iPhones using different technologies aren't. Most notable among these is "burn in." This happens when the same image is displayed on a screen for a long time, leading to faint "ghosts" of those images appearing on the screen all the time, no matter what else is being displayed. Luckily, OLED burn-in is easy to avoid. Just follow these tips:

  1. Lower Screen Brightness. The lower the brightness of your screen, the less likely an image is to burn into it. You have two options here. First, you can manually reduce your screen brightness by opening Control Center and moving the brightness slider down. Alternatively, let your screen brightness adjust to ambient light by going to Settings -> General -> Accessibility -> Display Accommodations -> Auto-Brightness.

  2. Set Screen to Auto-Lock. Burn in only happens when an image is on the screen for a long time. So, if your screen locks and shuts off regularly, the image can't burn in. Set your screen to automatically lock by going to Settings -> Display & Brightness -> Auto-Lock and pick 5 minutes or less.

Another screen problem that affects some iPhone X models is a green line that appears at the right edge of the screen after the phone has been on a little while. This is another hardware problem that users can't fix themselves. If you're seeing this, your best bet is to contact Apple to get support.

iPhone X Face ID Problems

Face ID on iPhone
image credit: Apple Inc.

Probably the single coolest feature of the iPhone X is the Face ID facial recognition system. This feature is used for security and convenience: it unlocks the phone, is used to enter passwords, and even authorizes Apple Pay transactions. But problems with Face ID and either the front or back camera can cause your iPhone X not to recognize you. If you're (ahem) facing this problem, try these tips:

  1. Adjust iPhone Angle. If Face ID sometimes recognizes you, but other times doesn't, consider changing the angle you're holding the phone at. While the Face ID sensors are pretty sophisticated, they have to be able to get a good view of your face to work.

  2. Clean "The Notch." The Face ID sensors are located in "the notch," the black cut-out at the top of the screen. If those sensors get covered with dirt, dust, or even enough grease from your skin, their normal operation could be diminished. Try wiping "the notch" clean.

  3. Update the OS. Apple regularly improves the speed and accuracy of Face ID, as well as fixes bugs, in new versions of the iOS. If you're having Face ID problems on iPhone X, make sure you're running the latest operating system.

  4. Reset Face ID. The problem might not be with Face ID itself, but instead with the original scans of your face created when you set up Face ID to begin with. If the other things haven't helped, get rid of your old face scans and make new ones. Get into a bright, well-lit place and then go to Settings -> Face ID & Passcode -> enter your passcode -> Reset Face ID. Then set up Face ID from scratch.

  5. Contact Apple. If none of these things has helped, there could be a problem with the hardware in your iPhone X (it could be a problem with the cameras, the Face ID sensors, or something else). In that case, you should contact Apple to get a diagnosis of the problem and a fix.

You may have seen stories on the internet claiming that Face ID has been hacked. These are almost all bogus. Face ID is an extremely sophisticated system that relies on tens of thousands of data points to detect a face. Yes, it's possible that identical twins may be able to defeat Face ID (it makes sense; they have basically the same face!). Other family members that look very similar to each other may also be able to trick it. But for the most part, the likelihood of Face ID being tricked or hacked is very, very low.

iPhone X Speaker Problems

Man listening to iPhone speaker
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The iPhone has always been a great multimedia device, but some users report diminished enjoyment of media on the iPhone X due to speaker problems. Here are two of the most common.

Speakers Sound Muffled

Speakers that sound quieter than they should, or whose audio sounds muffled, can often be fixed by doing the following:

  1. Restart iPhone. Restarting your iPhone can solve all kinds of problems, including audio issues.

  2. Clean the Speakers. You could have dirt, dust, or other gunk built up on the speakers that's causing the quietness. Learn how to clean iPhone speakers.

  3. Check the Case. If you use a case with your iPhone, make sure there's nothing stuck between the case and the speaker, like pocket lint, that could be causing the issue.

Speaker Crackles at High Volumes

On the other end of the spectrum, some iPhone X users have reported that their speakers make an unpleasant crackling noise when their volume is too high. If this is happening to you, try the following:

  1. Restart iPhone. It may not help in this case, but it's quick and easy, so it never hurts to try a restart. You can even try a hard reset, if you'd like.

  2. Update the OS. Since the latest version of the iOS also contains the latest bug fixes, make sure you're running it.

  3. Check with Apple. Crackling speakers are most likely to be a hardware problem that you can't solve. Get support from Apple instead.

Some people have encountered problems using Wi-Fi on their iPhone X. This probably isn't an issue with the iPhone X itself. More likely, this has to do with software settings or your Wi-Fi network. Learn more about the causes and fixes in How to Fix an iPhone That Can't Connect to Wi-Fi.

iPhone X Charging Problems

An iPhone on a wireless charging stand
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The iPhone X is the first iPhone to include support for wireless charging. That's cool, but it's not cool if the phone won't charge properly. If you're facing that problem, try these steps to fix it:

  1. Try a New Charging Cable. It could be that the charging problem is with your cable, not your phone. Try another cable that you know for sure works. Make particularly sure to either use an official Apple cable or one that's certified by Apple.

  2. Remove Cards From Case. If you're trying to charge wireless and have a case that also stores things like credit cards, remove the cards. The wireless payment features of the cards can interfere with the wireless charging.

  3. Remove Case for Wireless Charging. Removing the entire case may be a good idea if you're charging wirelessly. Not all cases are compatible with wireless charging, so they could be preventing normal function.

  4. Restart iPhone. You never know what kinds of problems a restart can solve. This could be one of them.

iPhone X Battery Life Problems

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Nothing is worse than not being able to use your phone because it's running out of battery too soon, but that's exactly the thing some users complain about. And with all of its cool, power-hungry features — the OLED screen, for instance — it's not a surprise that there might be some iPhone X battery problems.

Luckily, battery issues on the iPhone are fairly easy to resolve using the settings built into the iOS. Here are some tips:

  1. Learn to Conserve Battery. We've got 30+ tips on how to extend your iPhone's battery life. Use some of these and your iPhone will run longer between charges.

  2. Update the OS. In addition to bug fixes, new versions of the iOS often deliver improvements that make the battery more efficient. Install the latest update and you may see your battery last longer.

  3. Get an Extended Life Battery. Maybe the easiest way to get your battery to last longer is to get more battery. There are all sorts of extended life batteries on the market, from external dongles to cases.