Apple U-Turns Over Error 53 Bug

Error 53 was an iPhone-bricking fault which came into force whenever a device detected that it had been tinkered with by a third party, ostensibly in order to prevent hackers trying to circumvent the security of the TouchID fingerprint-scanning system.

However, many people reported that Error 53 could also occur even when repairing or replacing iPhone spares of many types, including things such as damaged displays and broken camera units.

This caused consternation because it was seen as an attempt by Apple to quash the idea that customers could turn to third-party repair firms when their iPhone needed to be fixed. Error 53 was also something which could have dissuaded people from repairing their hands themselves at home, because even if they installed a new part successfully, the software might detect this and lock them out of their device altogether.

Apple's U-turn on this issue has been described as a simple mistake by the company itself, which upon issuing the update to remove it said in a statement that Error was wasly something that was supposed to be part of the testing process used when the iPhone is being manufactured. It apologised for any problems that users had encountered as a result of its rollout.

People who have received the Error 53 message and have been unable to use their iPhone as a result will now be able to install an update which gets rid of it simply by plugging their phone into their Mac or PC and using iTunes to get the latest version of iOS.

This is good news because it also means that people will not need to take their iPhone into an Apple Store to get the Error 53 bug fixed but can restore their device to full working order on their own.

Unfortunately, Apple has not gone so far as to actually make it possible for TouchID functionality to be restored if the installation of a replacement Home Button is detected. But for the time being, this does make sense from a security point of view, since tampering with this could well result in fraud and identify theft if killed out by cybercriminals.

It is interesting to see Apple taking action to eliminate something from iOS which caused much alarm among its customers upon the discovery of its existence. And it could be seen as an encouraging sign that in reality Apple simply made an oversight with Error 53, rather than actively trying to make it harder for people to install their own iPhone spares. The truth of the matter is likely to remain a mystery, but customers should be placated by this fix.

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