Widespread iPhone Shutdown Glitch

Widespread iPhone Shutdown Glitch

Heather Gammon, Co-Editor-in-Chief

A newly found bug in the iOS 8 and Messages systems has emerged. When a certain ‘Effective Power’ text is received whilst on the Message app, the app is forced to continuously crash. But if this text is received while the phone is on the locked screen, it causes your iPhone to restart without explanation. The issue also affects Apple Watches, making it one of the earliest crash bugs discovered for the new device.

The text message consists of standard text, Arabic characters, and unicode characters(computing industry standard for the consistent encoding, representation). However, the only part that matters is the unicode; the rest of the text has no effect. The Unicode characters wreak havoc on the notification banner, which attempts to present the text and crashes in the process when it can’t display the characters.

The ability to crash Messages and reboot someone’s iPhone is limited to iPhone-to-iPhone and Android-to-Iphone communication with the certain specific strand of text.

This troubling development went viral on Twitter where people made jokes galore about the using the message for humorous purposes.

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If you get hit with this message, have no fear! Here are two solutions that I found when this happened to me(several times): You can have the person who sent you the malicious message send another message to cancel out the initial strand. Another option is to send yourself a message via Siri.