Apple promises a fix for iPhone bricking stemming from date and time bug

Apple today officially acknowledged the date bug in iOS that can potentially brick an iOS device when its date is set to May 1970 or earlier on its Support website. The bug was discovered last week and has since then caused quite a headache for Apple employees.

According to the document, a permanent fix for the problem will be released as part of a future software update. Meanwhile, the affected iPhone owners are advised to contact Apple Support.

“Manually changing the date to May 1970 or earlier can prevent your iOS device from turning on after a restart,” notes Apple.

“An upcoming software update will prevent this issue from affecting iOS devices. If you have this issue, contact Apple Support,“ reads the support doc.

The issue was first reported last week in a Reddit thread and has since blown up.


To reproduce the issue, you would need to go to Settings → General → Date & Time and flip the switch next to the Set Automatically to the OFF position.

You would then need to change the date to January 1, 1970. You should be able to hit this date by scrolling up to get to year 2000, then go back, into Date & Time settings again and repeat the process until you reach 1970.

This bug affects all iOS devices running iOS 8+ and powered by a 64-bit chipset. As reported on many forums, a successful solution to fix an iPhone ‘bricked’ by this bug is to manually disconnect and re-connect its battery, though this requires opening up the phone.

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