Apple’s most recent software updates have reportedly broken FaceTime compatibility with older iPhone and iPad models, preventing many users from making voice or video calls during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The issue affects devices running iOS 13.4 and macOS 10.15.4 when they attempt to connect with devices running iOS 9.3.5 or iOS 9.3.6 – or vice versa. There is no fix at this time.
Video calling services like FaceTime have become extremely important to millions of us as we are stuck at home unable to visit our friends and loved ones. The last thing we need is for those services to be lacking.
Unfortunately, this is exactly what is happening for a specific group of iPhone, iPad, and Mac users.
FaceTime broken on old iOS devices
“Since updating my iPhone 11 Pro and iPad Air 2 to 13.4, I can no longer FaceTime an old iPad running iOS 9, the one my elderly grandparents use during this difficult time,” Ali Kahn explained on Twitter.
“After upgrading my iPad Pro 2018 to iPadOS 13.4, I get stuck on the ‘Sign In’ screen when I call my parents who are using iPad 3 running iOS 9.3.5,” another user wrote on the Apple Communities Support Forum.
The issue first arose when Apple rolled out its most recent updates on March 24. Devices still running iOS 13.3.1 or macOS 10.15.3 can still connect with iOS 9 devices through FaceTime, but that’s just not possible after the update.
Apple generally recommends updating its latest software to resolve issues, but for many iPhone and iPad models still in use, iOS 9.3.5 or iOS 9.3.6 are the latest supported versions. The list of devices blocked on these versions includes:
- ipad 2
- iPad (third generation)
- iphone 4s
- iPad mini (first generation)
- iPod touch (fifth generation)
There is no solution
âWe have received reports on this problem and I want to make sure that we get
this problem was fixed as quickly as possible, âan Apple support representative explained to a user. They promised to pass it on to the engineering team.
As of yet, however, there is no complete solution – and no temporary workaround. It is no longer possible to downgrade an iPhone or iPad that has been updated to iOS 13.4 or iPadOS 13.4, so there is no way to go back.
So there are two options: either you have to wait for Apple to deliver a fix when it’s ready, or you have to replace old iOS devices with new ones that can run newer versions of its operating system.
Just a bug?
What’s not clear at this point is whether this is indeed a bug, or whether Apple has intentionally stopped supporting older versions of iOS due to unknown compatibility issues. He certainly didn’t say it was.
We have contacted Apple for more information and will update this post if we get a response.