If you notice your iPhone camera blinking or flashing on and off intermittently, there are several troubleshooting steps you can try to fix the issue before contacting Apple Support. An iPhone camera that keeps blinking can often be resolved through software resets, app updates, or by disabling certain camera features. However, in some cases, it may indicate a hardware issue and require service.
Try the following solutions to resolve an iPhone camera that won’t stop blinking:
Restart Your iPhone
Restarting your iPhone is one of the simplest yet most effective ways to fix software glitches causing camera problems. When you restart your iPhone, it clears out your device’s memory and refreshes the software. Here’s how to restart your iPhone:
For iPhone 8 or later: Press and release the Volume Up button. Press and release the Volume Down button. Then, press and hold the Side button until you see the Apple logo.
For iPhone 7 or 7 Plus: Press and hold the Volume Down button and the Side button at the same time until you see the Apple logo.
For iPhone 6s or earlier: Press and hold both the Home button and Sleep/Wake button at the same time until you see the Apple logo.
Close All Background Apps
Having too many apps running in the background uses your iPhone’s resources and can sometimes cause camera issues. Close all open apps on your iPhone to free up memory and potentially fix the blinking camera problem. Here’s how to close background apps:
If you have an iPhone X or later: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and pause in the middle of the screen. Swipe left or right to find the app you want to close, then swipe up on the app’s preview to close it.
If you have an iPhone 8 or earlier: Double-click the Home button to show open apps. Swipe left or right to find the app you want to close, then swipe up on the app’s preview to close it.
Update to the Latest Version of iOS
Outdated or buggy software may have issues that affect the iPhone’s camera functions. Updating your iPhone to the latest version of iOS can help resolve many software-related problems. Here’s how to update iOS:
Go to Settings → General → Software Update.
If an update is available, tap “Download and Install.”
Tap “Install Now” or “Install” to install the latest iOS update.
Clean the Camera Lens
If dirt, debris, or a scratch is obstructing the iPhone camera lens, it could cause the blinking issue. Carefully wiping down your iPhone camera lens may fix the problem. Use a soft, lint-free cloth like a microfiber cloth to gently wipe the lens clean. Make sure the cloth is slightly damp but not soaking wet. Be very gentle around the lens.
Disable Camera Features
Certain iPhone camera features like Live Photos, filters, or HDR can sometimes cause software glitches resulting in a flashing camera. Disabling each camera feature one at a time can help identify and resolve the problem. Here’s how to disable camera features:
Open the Camera app on your iPhone.
To disable Live Photos: Tap the Live Photos icon, which looks like a circular icon with concentric circles inside. Tap “Off.”
To disable camera filters: Tap the filter icon, which is three overlapping circles. Tap “Original” to disable filters.
To disable HDR: Tap “HDR” at the top of the screen. Tap “Off” to disable HDR.
Turn off Live Photos
Live Photos is an iPhone camera feature that captures a brief video clip of the moments just before and after you take a photo. While Live Photos add a fun, lively effect to your shots, this feature can sometimes cause issues that lead to an iPhone camera blinking or flashing.
Disabling Live Photos is an easy fix you can try to resolve a malfunctioning iPhone camera. Here’s how to turn off Live Photos:
Temporarily Disable Live Photos
To temporarily turn off Live Photos for your current Camera session:
Open the Camera app on your iPhone.
Tap the Live Photos icon in the top right corner of the screen. It looks like a circular icon with concentric dot circles inside.
Tap “Off” to disable Live Photos. Live Photos will remain disabled until you close the Camera app.
Permanently Disable Live Photos
To disable Live Photos from the Settings app for all future Camera use:
Go to Settings → Camera → Preserve Settings.
Toggle on the “Live Photos” option.
With Live Photos disabled in Settings, it will remain off whenever you open the Camera app.
Turning off Live Photos, whether temporarily or permanently, prevents the camera from capturing the brief video footage that can sometimes interfere with the iPhone camera’s functionality and cause it to blink. If disabling Live Photos resolves your iPhone camera blinking issue, you’ll know the cause was related to the Live Photos feature. You can then avoid using Live Photos when taking still photos in the futur
Take Off Your iPhone Case
If you have an iPhone case on, it’s possible it could be physically obstructing the camera causing the blinking issue. Remove your iPhone case and see if the problem continues. If removing the case fixes the blinking camera, you may need to replace or modify the case.
Turn Off Low Power Mode
Low Power Mode reduces power consumption on your iPhone for increased battery life. However, it also slows down some system performance, which can potentially affect the iPhone camera. Turning off Low Power Mode may resolve a flashing camera issue. Here’s how to turn off Low Power Mode:
Go to Settings → Battery → Low Power Mode.
Toggle the switch next to Low Power Mode to turn it off.
Force Restart Your iPhone
Forcing your iPhone to restart refreshes the entire device and can clear up software glitches that a standard restart may not fix. This should be one of the first major troubleshooting steps you try for an iPhone with a blinking camera. Here’s how to force restart your iPhone:
For iPhone X, XR, XS, 11, or SE (2nd generation): Press and quickly release the Volume Up button. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button. Then, press and hold the Side button until you see the Apple logo.
For iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or X S Max: Press and quickly release the Volume Up button. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button. Then, press and hold the Side button until you see the Apple logo.
For iPhone 7, 7 Plus, 6s, SE (1st generation) or earlier: Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button and Home button together until you see the Apple logo.
Reset Location & Privacy Settings
Resetting the location and privacy settings on your iPhone restores them to default and fixes issues related to app permissions that could potentially cause camera problems. However, it will reset any custom location and privacy settings you have configured. Here’s how to reset location and privacy settings:
Go to Settings → General → Reset → Reset Location & Privacy.
Tap “Reset Settings” to confirm.
This will reset location and privacy settings for the camera, location services, diagnostics and more.
Update or Uninstall Third-Party Camera Apps
Third-party camera apps installed on your iPhone could potentially interfere with the native iOS Camera app and cause issues like a flashing camera. Try updating any third-party camera apps to the latest version, or uninstalling them altogether. You may need to disable access to the camera for some apps as well. Check each app’s Settings to disable camera access if necessary.
Contact Apple Support
If you suspect a hardware issue is causing your iPhone camera to blink, it’s best to have it examined by an Apple technician. Here are two options for hardware support:
Contact Apple Support: You can call Apple Support or start a live chat with an agent to discuss your iPhone camera blinking issue. They can run initial diagnostics and may advise you to bring your iPhone to an Apple Store or Apple Authorized Service Provider for testing and repair.
Schedule an appointment at the Genius Bar: Make an appointment at your local Apple Store’s Genius Bar and have a technician physically diagnose what’s causing your iPhone camera to malfunction. They may possibly repair or replace components if there is confirmed damage or other hardware issues.
While software-related problems are often the culprit for an iPhone with a blinking camera, if resetting and disabling various functions do not resolve the issue, it’s wise to consider hardware damage or defects could also be the source of the problem.
The only way to properly diagnose and fix hardware issues is by consulting with an Apple technician, either over the phone through Apple Support or in person at the Apple Store Genius Bar. They can conduct diagnostic tests, service the camera or other iPhone components if necessary, and get your iPhone camera working properly again.