The Apple iPhone 5s was announced on September 10, 2013. Repair of this device is similar to the previous models, and requires screwdrivers and prying tools. Available as GSM or CDMA / 16, 32, or 64 GB / Silver, Gold, and Space Gray.

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Touch screen will only work for 1-2 sec before becoming unresponsive

My phone was working perfectly fine when suddenly it became slow to respond (to touch) and then stopped working altogether. I did a hard reset, a restore in DFU mode, even took the thing apart to look for corrosion or loose connections, nada. My husband figured out that the screen would work for just a few seconds if you let it sit with the screen black for a bit, but it quits responding very quickly.

Our current theories:

Something is heating up really fast to cause a short of some sort

The digitizer is going bad

Does anyone have any clue what is going on?

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2 Answers

Chosen Solution

Was the screen recently replaced?

Are the corners of the iPhone metal housing frame dented in pushing against the screen?

Is the screen cracked?

Is there a visible gap / lift up between the screen's plastic frame and glass?

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Screen was not replaced recently, screen is not cracked and frame is not dented. No lifting between the glass and plastic.


Okay this one is very weird, I've never heard of one like this before.

You might want to get another screen tested on there. It's extremely rare for the touch screen to go bad for no apparent reason.


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I have seen this kind of problem a few times and diagnosed the screen to find no faults with it.

In my experience this is caused by the memory (or storage) on the device being faulty, full or close to capacity.

Faulty - As your phone is a iPhone 5s, then it is relatively old (around 4 years old), the phone stores it's data on something called solid state memory, 4 years ago the technology for solid state memory was not good compared to now. The MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure) of the memory was quite low initially and over-usage promoted the MTBF to become shorter by constantly using read/write cycles of the memory. Unfortunately this causes things like data corruption and bad sectors, which ultimately cause slowness and eventually total failure, it is inevitable.

Full or close to capacity - If the phone is not running on the latest firmware then your phone may be trying to download the latest firmware updates. If there is no room for the update the phone will constantly recycle the last block of memory with the latest block of the update causing the phone to slow to halt. If the phone is full, then there is your problem. In both of these cases removing unneeded apps and data (music / photos) may free up enough room for the phone to work again properly.

Hope this helps, good luck.

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