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iPhone 7 Plus users are reporting that their cameras are dying

Published Dec 21st, 2016 3:13PM EST
iPhone 7 Plus Problems With Camera
Image: Apple Inc.

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Every new smartphone that launches is bound to have problems that affect some handsets. After all, manufacturing is an incredibly complex process and regardless of how good your quality assurance programs are, issues will inevitably sneak through. As we learned with Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7, some manufacturing issues can be devastating. Luckily, however, no other smartphone has ever had such a catastrophic issue that would cause it to be cancelled entirely. All manufacturers have seen their fair share of production issues, including Apple — which certainly makes sense, since Apple’s manufacturing partners produce so many more smartphones per model than any other company. That doesn’t make the resulting problems any less frustrating for users, of course, and the latest issue involved the hottest new feature on Apple’s flagship iPhone 7 Plus.

Apple’s latest iPhones were labeled “boring” ahead of their release because they featured the same design we had already seen on the iPhone 6s line and the iPhone 6 line before it. Once the phones finally launched, however, it was immediately obvious that the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus were anything but boring. Apart from being the two fastest and most powerful smartphones in the world by a landslide, the iPhone 7 Plus also featured an impressive new camera that offered optical zoom and a nifty new “Portrait Mode.”

As it turns out though, the iPhone 7 Plus’s cool new camera is also causing problems for some users.

We first started receiving sporadic emails about three weeks ago from iPhone 7 Plus users who said that their cameras were dying. By “dying,” we mean actually dying — opening Apple’s camera app or any third-party camera app would display total blackness where on the screen instead of an image preview. Those emails have recently begun to come in a bit more frequently, so we did some digging around social media sites and Reddit. As it turns out, this is apparently a problem that several people are running into.

A Reddit thread posted on Tuesday explains the problem exactly as it has been described to us repeatedly in emails from readers. Basically, cameras are going haywire. ” I opened up the camera app only to be met with a black image preview, sometimes I can get an image however it’s either tinted green or purple and was once accompanied by a screen stating ‘Emergency iPhone needs to cool down’ when the handset wasn’t even slightly warm,” Reddit user teryakiwok wrote.

The good news is that we haven’t heard anyone complain of any issue getting their seemingly defective phone exchanged at an Apple store. So if you run into this problem on your iPhone 7 Plus, book a Genius appointment and it should be taken care of right away.

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.