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| 16 February, 2018

This Indian language symbol can crash your iPhone

Messages containing the symbol can effectively disable any chat or email app.

Image used for illustrative purpose.
A customer tests the features of the newly launched iPhone X at VIVA telecommunication store in Manama, Bahrain, November 3, 2017.

Image used for illustrative purpose. A customer tests the features of the newly launched iPhone X at VIVA telecommunication store in Manama, Bahrain, November 3, 2017.

REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

A new iOS bug which is a symbol in the Indian language known as Telugu, is potential to crash your iPhone. Whenever this symbol is placed into the text space of chat or email apps, the iOS 11 will struggle to render it and apps that try to do so will freeze and shut down.

In one such instant, the PC Mag sent messages with the Telugu symbol and the iPad immediately crashed when the messages were received. The iPad's iOS notification bar failed to process them, forcing the whole system to stop and reload.

Morever, messages containing the Telugu symbol can effectively disable any chat or email app that tries to fetch them on startup. Facebook Messenger, for instance, shut down whenever it came across a chat containing the symbol.

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Other apps like Yahoo Mail can constantly trigger the bug when iOS goes idle because the apps will try to display emails carrying the Telugu symbol as a notification and gets stuck in a cycle of periodic iOS freezes.

Warning about the bug, engineers at software maker Aloha Browser said the symbol is actually two Telugu characters that when translated mean the word 'sign'. The error is caused when the defaultSan Franciscofont across Apple devices tries to render the Telugu characters, PCMag quoted Aloha Browser as saying in a tweet.

Besides, iOS the bug can also be reproduced on macOS High Sierra (version 10.13), along with the new versions of tvOS and watchOS.

However, the silver lining is that the Telugu symbol doesn't appear to trigger an error when viewed over an internet browser, unless pasted into a text field like the web address bar. According to Apple, the company is currently working to fix the dangerous bug. While, Beta versions of iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS are free of the flaw.

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