New Apple Bug: iPhone 4S Mutes Outgoing Calls

Have you made a call on an iPhone 4S and couldn't hear anything on the other end? Chances are your phone could have a bug that's plaguing the new iPhone that mutes outgoing calls. The bug could be embarrassing because the caller hears nothing, but the person called hears everything just fine.

This could lead to some potentially awkward situations:

Caller #1: Hello? I can't hear anything. The call must not have gone through. (To companion) Joe! Yeah, I'll call the whiny cow later. She probably just wants to complain about my work anyway. Let's take a two-hour lunch.

Caller #2: Hello? Hello? Nope, nothing. (To friends)  I'll just call her from the strip club parking lot and say we're at a sports bar.

Caller #3: Hello? Helllloooo? (To companion) My phone's not working, Boo. Yeah, but I need to let him know I'll be working late or there will be trouble. He already suspects something's going on, so it's important. After that, it's on like Donkey Kong, Tiger.

Apparently the mute bug has been a problem since the iPhone 4S came out earlier this year, but it hasn't received as much attention as other problems, notably battery life. That, and with so many outgoing calls, perhaps users didn't notice a pattern that affected only about 10 percent of calls, according to GigaOm. It's also likely that because the glitch mutes others, the caller wasn't even aware it was happening.

However, that has changed with complaints piling up in Apple Support Communities forums --  now about 112 pages and counting. While Apple hasn't commented officially or acknowledged the problem, there have been a few fixes suggested by users. These were compiled by the Atlantic Wire:

  •  Use a headset. Many reported the problem only happens when making calls directly into the phone. 
  •  Press the speakerphone button. This is in the same family as the on-off trick. For some, putting the call on speaker and then off of speaker makes it all better. But not always. 
  •  Get a new phone. Or 4. Some users have reported that carriers are giving new phones, hoping a hardware swap will do the trick. Sometimes it works. For others it took multiple phones.  
  •  Stop using Siri. Some guess it has something to do with Siri, saying it happens less often with Siri turned off. 
  •  Use Siri. Another fix suggests making the call through Siri and doing a full phone restore.

Because of the interest and publicity about the muting glitch, a response from Apple is likely coming. But until Apple comes up with a solution, you can use these fixes or continue to successfully call people 90 percent of the time.

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