A new bug in Apple’s operating systems can crash any Apple device with just one simple character

Tim Cook

Apple is not having its best week. Following a deluge of bad reports on its new HomePod speaker – mixed reviews , reports of stained furniture , and even somewhat scarce profits – it’s now the turn of yet another software issue.

The latest bug, discovered by Italian blog Mobile World , is focused on a single character of a local Indian language (Telugu), which once typed on any iOS device can cause it to misbehave, crash, or even end stuck in a bootloop.

If a user were to open any conversation in a text-based app like WhatsApp, Twitter, or Facebook Messenger, and type the character, the app will crash, and it will keep force closing each time you try to re-open it.

telugu character(via Mobile World)The Telugu character, which we are not posting as text for obvious reasons.

As The Verge reported , the bug also afflicts other third-party applications, such as Gmail and Outlook for iOS, while others like Skype and Telegram seem to be unaffected.

If someone else were to send the character as a text, the notification snippet containing the character could also freeze or restart the entire iOS springboard by itself; Mobile World suggests that, in that case, users wait for the device to reboot itself automatically, because forcing it to do so may result in a bootloop.

Mobile World also says that the bug afflicts platforms beyond iOS: watchOS and macOS apps like Notes, Safari, and the App Store all reportedly crash as soon as the infamous character shows up.

A recent community bug report over at OpenRadar confirmed as much: “Trying to insert [the symbol] in any system text renderer like TextField, Label, TextView [makes devices] always […] crash.”

The only safe operating system seems to be iOS 11.3, which is however only publicly available in beta form. You can watch Mobile World’s full demonstrative video (in Italian) below.