Released September 16, 2016. Models A1661, A1784, and A1785. Available in 32, 128, or 256 GB configurations in Rose gold, gold, silver, black, jet black, and (Product)Red.

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Troubleshooting issues with iOS 11 and 3rd party hardware

I've been having trouble getting my iPhone 7 Plus working with iOS 11. The following hardware items have been replaced with 3rd party (non-Apple) components, all purchased from iFixit...

  • The screen and digitzer assembly
  • The front facing camera
  • The battery

Here's the problem: When I upgrade the OS from version 10.3.3 to version 11.0.1, the system becomes extremely sluggish. Every tap takes at least one second to respond. Scrolling and panning left to right on the home screen is smooth, launching any app (even settings) takes about two seconds for the phone to register a tap. At first I thought it was the digitizer not responding to touch, but I've come to the conclusion that it's just the system being bogged down by some sort of incompatibility between the new iOS 11 drivers and my 3rd party hardware.

Here's what I've tried:

  • Restoring via iTunes DFU as well as upgrading from the iPhone settings app.
  • I've reinstalled the original (cracked) Apple screen assembly before upgrading to iOS 11. This DOES NOT resolve the issue.
  • I've installed a second third party screen (different manufacturer)... no luck.
  • I've downgraded the OS back to 10.3.3, and everything works fine again (like new). Not a long term solution.

My troubles have lead me to think that the incompatibility is with either the battery or the front facing camera. Since I don't think that the battery requires drivers, my only conclusion is that the front facing camera assembly is not compatible with iOS 11.

I've been having difficulty finding any original OEM front facing camera assemblies online to test my hypothesis. Any ideas or solutions from the iFixit community would be helpful. Thanks!

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5 Answers

Chosen Solution

Try to update to 11.0.3 and see if that helps

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Good news here. I updated to 11.0.3 and everything is fine. I think Apple fixed the issue by disabling the ambient light sensor in phones with 3rd party sensors. I suspect this because under 11.0.3 the screen was not responding to changes in ambient light levels. I then replaced my 3rd party flex cable with an Apple OEM cable and everything is working perfectly.

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Most Helpful Answer

This has been a developing issue and there are all kinds of information out there. Most of it is focussed on touch problems. Unfortunately for end-users, a lot of the best info is on specialized discussion groups. So I have created a blog post that summarizes the most current and relevant information and I have been updating it almost daily.

The bottom line right now is that the problem is with aftermarket screens produced with Hancai or Tianma LCD's using the Aichungjia (a Flex/IC manufacturer) "copy" driver appear to be incompatible with iOS 11. This driver is said to be unable to handle the iOS configuration and therefore shutting down and causing the lack of Touch functionality.

The only real, practical solution right now is to either downgrade to iOS 10 while you still can or install an original/OEM grade replacement screen. I'm confident that the aftermarket screen manufacturers will correct this problem moving forward. In the meantime, contact your local repair shop (or vendor if you repaired it yourself) to see if they can offer you a replacement.

For those that are interested, you can click on my profile for a link to my blog.

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In my post, I mention that the problem persisted even after re-installing the original OEM screen and performing a DFU restore. Which leads me to think that in my case, the problem is not the screen, but the front facing camera. Have you seen this issue with 3rd party cameras?

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Yeah, I saw that but everything else you have experienced is "classic" iOS11/Touch issue. Have you tried just not connecting the camera to see if everything else works? I have not experienced or heard of camera issues in regards to iOS 11.

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Does it happen with all the third party screens? Like the ones produced by Fog. Cheers.

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It's not clear which aftermarket screens are affected. Suppliers have seen some screens affected and others not. It really comes down to the Touch Controller installed.

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I'm gonna plagiarize your blog ahaha but seriously I've been having these issues with my 6S. And I'm on 9.3.4 my previous aftermarket display was horrible. This is pretty good most of the time. Every once in awhile it hiccups. Also I didn't have any of these problems, until iOS 11 was released. I'll post a pictur in this thread. Apple is straight up saying that aftermarket displays won't work with their new iOS

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Here. Little jerks over at Apple, trying to keep us down, and the customer trapped financially and decision wise

*head shake*

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Will this solve my issue to?

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Solve? That's a problem that apple created. You can try upgrading to 11.0.3 which a few seem to have results with. Or some are downgrading to 10.3.3 and some are having that as a positive results

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Mine works great with 10.3.3, but since apple stop signing this version - i can't update before i know whats wrong.

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I would not update

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I smell a major law suit over this one that may go way up the ladder as it is monopolistic.

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Did you fix this problem ? I'm in the same situation, 3rd part screen and front camera and as you said, I think it's the camera flex that is the issue. I've spoken to apple and they did a diagnostic on my phone before I change and the ambient light sensor was broken on my original camera flex. Now I don't want to upgrade before I know it works. So, have you tried 11.0.3?

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I'm still working on my issue. I've ordered a new camera/flex cable directly from China (supposedly OEM) and will try it out tonight, but first I will update to 11.03 to see if the new software fixes it without a camera swap. If 11.03 does not fix the issue, I will try the OEM camera. If neither work, I'll take it to Apple to have it fixed because I will be out of options.

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Ah, please tell me how it's going

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Here are Apple's official comments on what is fixed on 11.0.3

iOS 11.0.3 includes bug fixes for your iPhone or iPad.

This update:

•Fixes an issue where audio and haptic feedback would not work on some iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus devices

•Addresses an issue where touch input was unresponsive on some iPhone 6s displays because they were not services with genuine Apple parts

•Note: Non-genuine replacement displays may have compromised visual quality and may fail to work correctly. Apple-certified screen repairs are performed by trusted experts who use Apple parts. See support.apple.com for more information.

There is a 11.1.0 slated to be released next week. Apple is releasing a new beta every day or so.

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The problem is that I don't know if it's the display or the camera flex that is the problem. I called apple support and they found that my old, original front camera flex was faulty. I accidentally ripped it when I changed the screen. The question now is - will the phone work with a 3rd part front camera flex or not.

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Kenneth, what symptoms is your phone suffering from? Is it functioning normally under 10.3.3? Did you ever try upgrading to 11?

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Upgrade your iPhone system to iOS11.03, this can fix your problems.

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Maybe or maybe not. The word case is that it doesn't work and then I'll be phoneless.

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cstarbird will be eternally grateful.
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