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It’s rare for iPhone X owners to discover that their screen is seemingly randomly unresponsive, with screen swipes and taps not registering at all, or they have a severe lag and there is a noticeable delay before the touch interaction is complete. Swipes and gestures suddenly have a huge delay and screen taps take a while to do anything or get ignored completely.
Sometimes the iPhone X screen freezes completely and becomes completely unresponsive to any involvement with the device.
These are rare issues, but when and if they happen to a user it’s understandably annoying. Luckily, there is a simple fix available so if you find that your iPhone X is randomly unresponsive and the screen doesn’t seem to work, you can fix the problem pretty quickly.
First of all, make sure that your iPhone X’s screen is clean and there is no ill-fitting screen protector or cover on the device that could prevent the screen from responding to touch. Assuming the iPhone X screen is clean and there is no obstruction, then you are in the realm of the unresponsive displays troubleshooting that we will discuss here.
So, what’s the best way to fix unresponsive iPhone X with frozen screen? The good old fashioned hard reboot! Yes indeed, force restarting iPhone X will cause the iPhone to reboot and once it restarts up again, the device’s display and touch interactions should respond to all inputs as expected.
How to Fix Frozen / Unresponsive iPhone X Screen
Here’s how to quickly fix an unresponsive iPhone X by force restarting the device, make sure to follow the sequence carefully to start the forced restart correctly:
- Press the volume Up button and let go
- Press Volume Down button and let go
- Press and hold the side Power / Lock button until you see the Apple logo appear on the screen, it may take about 10 seconds
- Once you see the Apple logo on the display, release the Power button and the device will boot up as usual
Once the iPhone X boots up again up, the screen should immediately work as you expect. All touch should be recognized immediately, and touch and swipe gestures should be recognized smoothly as usual.
Granted, restarting a device isn’t the most elegant solution, but since it works (and since no other solution is known) and it doesn’t take too long, this might be the best option available right now.
Next: Update iOS on the iPhone X
After forcing your iPhone X to reboot, take a moment to update iOS to the latest version, or at least make sure your device has the latest version available.
- Back up the iPhone X, support up to iCloud is simple or you can use a backupup to iTunes
- Open the “Settings” app and go to “General” then to “Software Update”
- If an iOS software update is available, download and install it as usual
Installing the latest version of iOS on iPhone X is important as every software update release often contains bug fixes, some of which can fix the unresponsive screen problem.
Why is the iPhone X screen freezing or unresponsive?
It is not entirely clear why the iPhone screen has stopped responding to touch, swipes, gestures and other touch inputs that are seemingly random. However, presumably the unresponsive screen issue is software related.
Interestingly, some time ago Apple had released an update to iOS for iPhone X, version iOS 11.1.2, which specifically mentioned the following in the release notes:
Fixes an issue where the iPhone X screen temporarily becomes unresponsive to touch after a rapid temperature drop
There are also several reports online that the iPhone X screen becomes unresponsive or freezes when the device is in a cold environment. In these situations, installing the iOS updates may fix the problem.
But skepticism about temperature as the sole cause of an unresponsive screen is justified as I have personally experienced the unresponsive screen problem on my own iPhone X in an indoor temperature controlled environment at a pleasant 72 degrees, and while running iOS 11.2. 6 use.
It’s quite likely that the iPhone X screen will occasionally freeze or become unresponsive due to some software glitch, be it a bug in a certain app, or iOS itself, or having a daemon running in the background and suddenly excessive resources consumed which lead the device to become so slow that it no longer responds to frozen. Since the screen responds again after a hard reboot, this makes sense.
Finally, it’s worth noting that since the iPhone X is fairly new, the device is backed by the normal Apple warranty, and so if you’re constantly experiencing freezing or unresponsive screen issues and the above tips of updating iOS and force restart doesn’t fix the problem for you, you should consider contacting an official Apple Support channel directly. Unresponsive screens are uncommon, but they are not entirely rare either, and a similar problem occurred a while ago with iPhone 6s models, as well as the occasional iPhone 7 and other iPhones, often involving a hard restart, software update or even a system restore.
Did this one tips help you fix your unresponsive iPhone X screen? Do you have another solution to this problem? Let us know your experiences in the comments below.
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