1970 Stories March 7, 2016

Not long after Apple fixed one 1970-related iPhone glitch, a second one appears to be at work. A number of iPhone and iPad owners are tweeting screengrabs of ghost emails arriving from 1st January 1970. The emails have no sender, subject or content, and cannot be deleted, reports the Telegraph.

The good news is that this glitch doesn’t do any harm. The date is simply the Unix equivalent of zero, so the iOS Mail app would default to this if for some reason the correct date and time were missing, as one Reddit user explained …

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1970 Stories February 16, 2016

PSA: There appear to be two reliable fixes for the 1970 date bug, but you’ll need skill or patience

While an upcoming software update should soon eliminate the 1970 date bug, that doesn’t help if you currently have a bricked phone. There have been varying reports of fixes that do or don’t work, but experiments by Macnn suggest that two approaches do the trick – both of which are apparently being done by Genius bar staff when people take in their bricked phones.

The ‘simple but not easy’ approach is to remove and replace the battery. This forces a full reset of the phone, but is not for the faint-hearted.

This is either just hard, or very difficult, and may require tools not generally found in the home. Yanking the battery for even a short period of time will force a reset of the phone. Sound scary? It can be, and if you mess something up in the disassembly, or tear a ribbon cable, you’re out of luck.

Obviously don’t do that on any phone still covered by warranty, and then only if you know what you’re doing.

Method 2 is to put the phone into DFU (Device Firmware Upgrade) mode. While some people have reported that this doesn’t work, Macnn reckons this is because they didn’t wait long enough.

This is where the recovery time has varied for us. We’ve done the restoration ten times. Three times, iTunes recognized the need for a recovery right away, and times on the other seven varied somewhat up to an hour. So, the moral of the story is, as long as the phone is in DFU mode, be patient. Also, if the recovery doesn’t work, wait an amount of time after your clock was set to Jan 1, 1970, and your deviation from Greenwich Mean Time (also sometimes referred to as Zulu time). Eastern time is currently five hours off of GMT, then try again.

Either way, you’ll need to restore from backup afterwards.

You can take the phone into an Apple Store, but don’t expect much sympathy. A friend reports that when his son did so after one of his mates thought it would be amusing to brick his phone, the Genius was rather unfriendly – probably because he’d been spending most of his time fixing this problem.

1970 Stories February 15, 2016

Last week, it was discovered that setting your iOS device system date and time back to January 1st 1970 would crash your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch effectively bricking it. Setting the date back this far would prevent the iPhone or other iOS device from booting up until the battery died.

AppleCare has been flooded with people bringing in their devices after trying out this bug … Now, Apple has officially acknowledged the problem on its Apple Support website. The company says it will release an upcoming software update to prevent this issue from affecting iOS devices in the future.

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