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iPhone typing bug in iOS 17 is infuriating users – but there’s a workaround

Published Dec 5th, 2023 7:27AM EST
iMessage RCS iPhone
Image: José Adorno for BGR

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A persistent iOS 17 bug haunts users since day one of the iPhone’s major 2023 update. As spotted by MacRumors, an increased amount of iPhone users have been reporting over Apple Community forums and Reddit that while they’re typing a message –whether on first-party or third-party apps – they get kicked out from there and find themselves on a new app.

This weird iOS 17 bug has been reported with all existing system versions, including the recent iOS 17.1.2 release. That said, it’s unclear if iOS 17.2, currently in beta, fixes this annoying issue, but most likely nothing.

A month ago, on the iOS Reddit forum, a user wrote: “Whether it’s iMessage or website, doesn’t matter, whenever I’m typing on anything, periodically it will activate the app switcher as if I’ve swiped the bottom of my screen. I’m not swiping anything, just normal texting or onscreen keyboard clicks.”

Fortunately, BGR staff didn’t experience this bug. However, we heard from a few people that the keyboard might go missing when opening Spotlight, but you could still type on an invisible keyboard.

What’s interesting about this iOS 17 bug is that new versions didn’t fix the issue but actually continue to spread to more iPhone owners. That said, a workaround, which doesn’t seem to have anything in common, can prevent this error from happening.

Here’s how to fix iPhone typing bug that switches apps in iOS 17

Believe it or not, turning off Reachability is the best way to prevent this error. This feature was first released with the iPhone 6 and would help users reach the top of the display by bringing the apps halfway down.

On iPhone models with Touch ID, you just need to double tap (not press) the Home Button, while on iPhone models with Face ID, you must slide down your finger from halfway through the dock.

To turn off this feature, follow these steps:

  • Open the Settings app on your iPhone;
  • Tap Accessibility;
  • On the PHYSICAL AND MOTOR section, tap Touch;
  • Turn off Reachability.

Although it’s a shame you’ll lose such a handy feature, it seems this is the only thing preventing this bug. BGR will let you know if Apple fixes this annoying iOS 17 bug.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.

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