If you have recently found your iPhone’s Messages app crashes upon receiving a new messages, then you are not alone. Apparently a bug exists in the app where if a certain string of text is received, then the app will crash, and possibly result in your iPhone restarting. This bug is reminiscent of a problem where Safari would similarly crash when rendering a specific text string. Given that the problematic text is very specific, if you are experiencing this problem, then it is likely because someone has singled you out as a prank, or otherwise.
The text is a series of arabic and unicode characters, that cause the banner notification system in your iPhone to crash. What this means is if you are looking at your text messages then this problem won’t occur, but if you receive the message when performing other tasks, then the notification to view it will spur the crash and your iphone will likely restart. Continual reception of additional messages will cause the phone to reboot each time one is received.
Here is a video demonstration of the bug, courtesy of iClarified.
- Have anyone (including yourself) send you a message from another device to cancel the first message.
- If you can, go to Settings > Notifications, and turn off the “Allow Notifications” for the messages app.
Apple workaround: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204897