One of the most exciting features Apple introduced in its button-free iPhones since the iPhone X was released is Face ID. The feature replaced Touch ID that appeared on all iPhones since the iPhone 5s through the 8 series. It is easy to set up and merely requires the user to look into their device. From there, Face ID unlocks the iPhone X, Xs, Xs Max, XR and iPhone 11 series simply by holding the phone up to your face so the sensors can recognize you. When Face ID works properly, it can determine the user whether they are wearing glasses, a hat, makeup or even a beard.
Unfortunately, just like with anything in technology, there may be times when Face ID is not working on your iPhone. Every so often, it might have hiccups such as not immediately recognizing your face, but this is usually remedied by moving the device slightly further away or due to something momentarily obstructing part of your face. When Face ID stops working, the first thing you have to do is manually enter your passcode to gain access to your phone. The next step is to troubleshoot and fix the potential issues causing Face ID to malfunction.
How To Fix Face ID Not Working on iPhone X, Xs, Xs Max, XR, iPad Pro 2018, 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max:
There are a few things you need to ensure first. The TrueDepth camera should not be encased or have a screen protector covering it. Be sure to also check to see whether there is any dirt or debris covering the camera.
Next, make sure that your entire face, including your eyes, nose and mouth are fully visible to your iPhone’s camera.
Face ID is meant to work even if you are wearing sunglasses or if you wear regular eyeglasses that have lenses that darken in sunlight. At the same time, if your lenses block certain types of light, you might have to remove them to effectively use Face ID.
Always use your iPhone in portrait position to use Face ID. On the iPad, however, you can use it in portrait or landscape.
While outdoors in bright sunlight, you should make sure the sun is not directly behind you when using Face ID on your phone.
After you have verified all of the above potential issues, you can then move on to solutions to troubleshoot your Face ID to get it working again. Try one and see if it fixes the problem and then try the next and those subsequent if they don’t work.
1. Turn Face ID Off and Then Back On
The first way to troubleshoot Face ID when it is not working on your iPhone is to turn the feature off and then back on. To do this, go to your Settings app and access the Face ID and Passcode Option. Enter your passcode and then you can toggle off Face ID for all features that use it.
It’s important to note that if you use Face ID for Other Apps, once you toggle that option, it will bring you to a new screen listing all third-party apps that use Face ID. Toggle those off as well.
Afterward, you should turn off your iPhone and turn it back on. Once it’s back on, go back to Settings and Face ID and Passcode and then toggle on all the options. Go to Other Apps and toggle Face ID back on.
Try to use Face ID on your iPhone again to see if it works. If it does, great! If it still isn’t working, however, there is another troubleshooting method you can try.
2. Reset Face ID
The next step you can try in troubleshooting Face ID when it malfunctions is to reset it. This will erase all previous scans you have made of your face to unlock your iPhone, which means you will have to set it all up again. Many users who have encountered Face ID problems swear that this method works wonders. While it might seem drastic, it might be well worth starting all over again, especially if it gets your Face ID working again.
To reset Face ID, go to your Settings app and access Face ID and Passcode, then tap “Reset Face ID.” Your iPhone will prompt you to set up facial recognition once again. After you are finished setting it up, try using it again. It should work normally.
3. Reset All Your Settings
The next troubleshooting step may be an annoyance, but if the previous tips have proved unhelpful, you should try it regardless. Sometimes, when a feature like Face ID stops working, you might have to simply reset all the settings on your iPhone. Unfortunately, this method will eliminate all your current settings such as Wi-Fi passwords and website login information, so always be sure you have this information handy to reenter it into your phone.
Once you are ready to go ahead with this step, go into your Settings app and tap “Reset.” Tap “Reset All Settings” and then enter your passcode and confirm your choice.
Once you have finished resetting the settings on your iPhone, you can then enable Face ID and try to use it again. If it works, you don’t have to worry about doing anything else. Otherwise, you should move on to the fourth and final troubleshooting option.
4. Update Your iPhone to the Latest Version of iOS
If you have not already updated your iPhone to the latest version of iOS, now is the time to do so. This is the most likely troubleshooting option to ultimately work so that your Face ID starts working like normal again if all else has failed thus far. Keep in mind that Apple continuously works out the bugs in the software and always improves upon iOS. If you’ve been putting off updating for any reason, it’s definitely worth trying, not only to fix Face ID but to squash all those bugs and security holes as well.
To update iOS, go into your Settings app and go to General, then Software Update and download and install the latest version of iOS. Depending on the update, this can take a few short minutes or considerably longer. Once the update is complete, check your Face ID. It should be working like normal again.
Still Having Trouble?
If none of these tips work to bring back your Face ID, you may have to contact Apple. You can do so online or go to your local Apple Store and inquire within.
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