This is attributed to the fact that some iPhones users specifically running iOS 11.1 have lost the ability to type the capital letter “i.” Instead of an “I” character, the iPhone keyboard will display an exclamation point and a boxed question mark, or a capital “a” with a series of lines.
This error first surfaced about a week ago, following the release of iOS 11.1, a software update that brought bug fixes as well as introducing a whole range of new emoji.
However, no one could actually pin point the genesis of this bug as it is not everyone who updated to the latest software is affected by the problem. And this has brought about different suggestions from many angles.
Emojipedia’s Jeremy Burge for example suggested that the issue is most likely caused by an auto-correct bug in iOS 11.1.
“What’s really going on is that the letter ‘I’ is being appended with an invisible character known as Variation Selector 16 when auto-correct kicks in to replace the lowercase ‘i’,” he explained in a blog post .
“This VS-16 character is intended to be used to make the previous character have emoji appearance. When used in conjunction with the letter ‘I’ it displays in some apps as ‘A ⍰’.”
Another suggestion linked the bug to iOS’s predictive text feature and specifically the cloud synchronization for text predictions. Apple’s machine learning algorithms can pick up new words used by its customers and sync those words to other iOS or macOS devices.
The “?-within-a-box” symbol is usually representative of an unprintable Unicode character, though sometimes it can appear as several lines instead. According to The Guardian, some Apple users are reporting seeing the “i” character in the emoji picker, while others are actually seeing the strange Unicode character.
Obviously this kind of bug would undoubtedly be so frustrating, since affected users claim that the bug affects every app that uses the keyboard including Messages and Safari as well as third-party apps like Twitter and Instagram.
Apple acknowledging this issue was quick enough to at least bring forward a quick fix to affected users, the tech giant suggested a “Text Replacement Setup” for the letter “i” until the bug is fixed in a future iOS software update.
There are two methods to fix this bug i.e the official Apple method and the second method involves using a third party App but both methods fix the bug.
HOW TO FIX THE BUG WITH APPLE’S METHOD
Apple recommends in a new support page that users set up a Text Replacement for the letter “i.”
★ Go to Settings
★ Tap on General
★ Tap on “Keyboard” and then “Text Replacement”
★ Tap the “+” plus to add a new replacement
★ For Phrase, type an upper-case “I.”
★ In the Shortcut box, type a lower-case “i.”
Obviously, this is not a perfect solution, however, since it’ll replace all lowercase “i” characters with an uppercase “I” character, it’ll be grammatically incorrect. But, at the very least, your messages and posts will make sense.
HOW TO FIX THE BUG WITH (THE THIRD PARTY METHOD)
The other way to fix the glitch in the interim is to download and use a third-party keyboard app. There is a slew of these apps on the App Store, but some highly rated (and free) options include Google’s Gboard and SwiftKey.
★ Download the keyboard app of your choice from the App Store
★ Once it’s installed, go to Settings > Keyboard
★ Tap on Keyboards
★ Tap on Add New Keyboard
★ Tap on GBoard or SwiftKey
In any app where the Keyboard is present, tap on the Glove icon to switch between available keyboards.
Again, it’s not an ideal solution, but it’ll work until Apple fixes the issue. Which, judging by the fact that “I” is a relatively important letter in the English language, will probably be sooner than later since Apple are always quick in releasing software updates.
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