Bug Affecting Conversations Between iPhones and Android Phones

Avatar publsher | May 19, 2023

bug affecting iPhone and Android conversations

This peculiar glitch is disrupting the flow of conversations between iPhones and Android phones.


An enigmatic addition of a plus sign to phone numbers is deceiving iOS into perceiving them as international.


A singular formatting anomaly is causing complications in text exchanges between iPhone and Android users, leaving everyone uncertain about who should be held responsible.


Numerous reports across multiple Reddit threads and other platforms voice grievances regarding Android or Google Voice user numbers appearing on iPhones with an additional + sign at the start. Consequently, iPhones become perplexed and interpret them as international numbers. For instance, if the area code’s initial two digits were 44, it would transform into the +44 international code for the United Kingdom once the iPhone applies its automated number formatting.


This misidentification can lead to various vexatious issues. Chat threads may fracture as the phone mistakes newer messages for those from a different individual. Furthermore, if you initiate a conversation with someone for the first time, they may hesitate to read your message due to the unfamiliar number, assuming it to be a scam.


Certain commentators have speculated that this problem may be somehow linked to iOS 16, and indeed, the occurrence appears to align with Apple’s iOS 16.5 update. However, interestingly, a nearly identical issue was reported several years ago by an individual using iOS 13.1.2. It is possible that the confluence of problems with versions 13.1.2 and 16.5 is merely coincidental, but it is difficult to fathom that Apple would resolve the original glitch only to allow its recurrence after all these years.


Previously, Apple allegedly confirmed to me that they in no way change/provide/etc any of the incoming phone data. They said that it all from the carrier. However, if the carrier is indeed to blame, it is peculiar that T-Mobile drew the ire previously, whereas MacRumors’ coverage now indicates that the majority of complaints originate from AT&T users.


At present, the entire situation remains shrouded in mystery. Nevertheless, while various solutions have been proposed—sending oneself a text, performing a hard reset, resetting networking settings—the most reliable approach is likely to ensure that contacts are entered with the correct international code included. For contacts within the United States, this entails including the +1 prefix.


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