iPhone 4 Screen Flickers

iPhone 4 Screen Flickers

iPhone screen flickering? Give this a shot

I’ve had my iPhone 4 (work phone) about a year now. And just a few days ago I noticed I had a case of the iPhone 4 screen flickers. It’s a bit lighter and you can see lines like you would if you looked very closely to a TV set. I’ve added an image, but that doesn’t add anything because the flicker doesn’t affect it.

So my investigation begins as to why this is happening. I’m sure I’m just days or weeks away from having it go black out on me. But I’ll get into the store to see if I can take advantage of the warranty. We’ll see. I’ll keep you posted. If you’ve had the same problem, lemme know!

BTW: It’s in an Otter Box case so it’s very well protected so if it’s a loose connection inside, that’s a design flaw!

Update: iPhone 4 screen flickers

Go to SETTINGS > BRIGHTNESS and disable AUTO-BRIGHTNESS for a few minutes and then flip it back on. If that doesn’t work, disable AUTO-BRIGHTNESS and pull the brightness down just below max and leave it. Let us know if that works for you.

This post has become fairly popular so I wanted to provide some feedback that I’ve found on the web. While we don’t now the exact cause of the iPhone 4 flicker problem, many people have taken different routes in trying to solve it. here are a few forum responses from people facing this issue. The flicker issue affects mostly iPhone 4’s, but can be experienced in iPads as well. And some are getting this issue with the upgrade to the iOS6 software.

User Success Stories

Mattfl30: I had this issue and reboots didn’t worked. I turned down my brightness from full to just below. No more flickering.

JerrySFL: My fix was to do a complete reset of my iPad wipe out everything and restore it from the backup My iPad now works great and I didn’t lose any information I am shocked. Took four hours but I’m up and running again.

Alex_ionut2003: Today I’ve come along a strange issue with 1 iPhone 4s. Display was flickering in all 4 corners of the screen. Searched for a solution but with no success.  For anybody else that face this problem… this is a software problem that causes this strange hardware issue. To fix this problem just do the following. Go to SETTINGS—>BRIGHTNESS and disable Auto-Brightness for a few minutes and then re-activate it. Your screen should be back to normal.

Hope some of these things helped. Please leave your comments below and let us know what has worked for you.

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Josh Benson

Josh Benson writes about the web, technology, TV News and life in general. He's a self-admitted geek and loves being a Dad. He covers the day's news on WFLA-TV in Tampa, Florida. He struggles to learn code and work out but loves all things tech and web!

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  • Chris

    I also have an iPhone 4s and it’s approx. one year old. I started having problems with my screen a little over one week ago. The first time it happened the phone shut down and went black. It would not turn back on and I thought it was broke for sure. I plugged it in for about an hour and it finally came back on. Since then I have dealt with it flickering 3 or 4 times a day, almost to the point of shutting down again. I work offshore in the Gulf of Mexico and have no way of taking it in for about another 2 weeks. If you have figured out what is causing this, or a possible fix for it, please message me and let me know. I also feel like it is close to going black and not working at all. Thank you

  • Kelsi

    I am having this same exact problem! Have u figured out what the problems is yet?

    • Kelsi, this has been a tough one. A lot of the forums I’ve been reading all list it as a software issue – but I’m not so sure. There are even complaints that the new iPhone has some flicker problems in some phones. It’s not a wide-spread issue, but I’m assuming it may be limited to some phones hardware or perhaps a software glitch. You could try returning it to the store – because it’s NOT normal and you shouldn’t have to deal with it. Keep us posted and thanks for the post. I’ll post more here if I find any more information. Good luck!

  • Here is something you can try: Go to SETTINGS > BRIGHTNESS and disable Auto-Brightness for a few minutes and then re-activate it. Your screen should be back to normal. Hope that works! Let me know.

    • Melissa Cortez

      it worked for me 🙂

  • Timothy

    nope didn’t fix it I have the same problem

  • Mimi

    Thank you! Turning the auto bright off and then back on worked like a charm

  • Sarah Pechacek-Robinson

    Turning the brightness down and then back up worked for my iPhone 4S. Yay!

  • Noybi

    Thanks for this… The flickering was gone.. 😀

  • Chelsea gillis

    I’ve turned my brightness off, I’ve lowered the brightness and nothing is working. Idk what to do. My screen went completely white and I reset it and it’s been flickering ever since. Help!

    • Has your screen been replaced since you purchased the phone?

  • Sam

    Just had my iPhone 4s unresponsive to touchscreen… manual turn off and back on fixed it…

    Only to notice a flicker…

    Now this post helped me just turning brightness down and disable auto brightness helped!

    Thanks!

    • Has your screen been replaced since you purchased the phone? That’s the first thing to know.

  • Sandra

    Great, problem solved; Thanks Josh!

  • Myke

    My flickering started when I tried adding a picture to a contact… the screen went white so, i restarted it. Changing the auto-brightness didn’t help at all. Just made it less noticeable. Going to try resetting my phone from the backup file… Hopefully this works. Stupid iPhone4 🙁

    • Tom Maene

      I have the same exact problem.. was it solved by resetting?

    • Maddi

      My iPhone 4 is about a month old now and today I was adding a photo to a contact and it went fully white with a few grey lines going through it. After reading a bit, I restarted it and it now has an outline of flickering white around the edge of my screen (curvy around the corners) Its bugging me so much and I dont know how to fix it. If anyone can please help me it would be much appreciated. Thanks.

      • rosie

        Im having the same problem!!!!! Have you figured out a way to make it stop?

  • Myke

    Just an update – I reset my phone from the back up file and that didn’t work either. The flicker is still there. Any other suggestions?

  • Luke

    By adjusting the Auto Brightness AND turning off motion control on my Icon Skins app, the flickering is gone.
    Thanks to all for taking the time to respond.

  • Kimberly Casey

    So my phone is doing the exact same thing have tried everything and the flickering still wont stop, If i reset my home screen layout will that make a difference or no?

    • That shouldn’t make a difference. My first question would be if you’ve had the screen replaced since you bought the phone. That’s usually 90% the problem. I’m afraid you may have to call Apple for a replacement. They should replace it for free because it’s a flaw in that phone.

  • Jessica Mauboy Fan C

    At first my IPHONE 4 went white added lines then didn’t do anything left it for a while and then big black thing came straight away i started stressing then got told to hold home and top button for 10 seconds did that about 10 times and in that time i had already found a new phone and became my new phone anyway then the lines were gone but phone was flickering then turned down brightness and now have the title of drama queen but just like you i was worried Thankyou…

  • JoAnne

    I simply turned off the Auto Brightness & lowered the brightness to minimum & wa-la ! It stops flickering !!

  • Melissa Cortez

    turning the auto-brightness off fixed my iphone 🙂 thank you!!

  • Jordan Hall

    I tried turning the auto-brightness off and adjusting the brightness. Flickering still there. I reset my iPhone 4 and it stopped for about a day atleast and it started back flickering again. It happens when I use the flashlight or go to pictures and Facebook. Any other solutions I could try?

    • Has your screen been replaced since you first purchased your iPhone? If so, that would probably be the culprit as your screen connection may be loose.

  • Amanda Anandita Rz

    thank you josh. firstly I got shocked when I saw my iphone flickering. I googled and find to your blog. I just turn off the auto-brigthness. Hope will work 🙂

    • Hope it worked! Keep us posted.

      • Amanda Anandita Rz

        Hi josh, I had turn off the auto-brigthness but my Iphone still flickering. I don’t know are my screen been replaced or not. because I bought from my friends. can you suggest me what should I do? This flickering make my sight tired

  • If you do not buy quality products for the gadget then most probably it will affect the functioning of your phone. For instance, the LCD layer will burn out in case you attach it with an iPhone 3gs replacement screen. Thus you should be very keen about the quality if want to make right choice while choosing the accessories for your gadget.

    • Very good point. I’ve replaced about 15 iphone screens of my own over the years. You can tell the crappy ones from the good ones. And yes, they will start flickering if it’s a bad one.

  • Tony

    I know that it happened to me when I was uploading pics into my Google Drive. It froze and slowly faded into white. It froze so I rebooted my phone holding down the power and home button an then releasing it when the Apple icon came up. That’s when the flicking was noticable. Disabling the autobrightness barely helped.

    • Tony

      It worked. My process was a bit different than some of you. I had to reset my settings. I just can’t waste my time with a factory reset. My iPhone and iTunes aren’t getting along than usual.
      But, after the resetting, the phone looked normal as usual with no flickering.

      • Good to hear, Tony. Thanks for the update.

  • Taylor

    I was assigning a picture to one of my contacts and that’s when things went awry. The screen turned whitish gray with little vertical lines. I rebooted it and then here comes the flickering in the corners. I need help because I’m FREAKING.

    • Did you buy the phone new or used? Have you ever gotten the screen replaced?

  • Miha Strumbelj

    I replaced the new screen and it works, but then i restore iphone in itunes and then starts flicking.I found video with the same problem http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=txB9idIJxmU&feature=youtu.be
    Help,please.

  • Guest

    I replaced the new screen and it works, but then i restore iphone in itunes and then starts flicking.I found video with the same problemhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v…
    Help,please.

    • Hmmm. Bizarre. Who did the screen replacement and was it a cheap screen or an Apple-issued screen?

  • zimfinest

    Thanks Josh, it worked like magic for me. Settings>general &brightness>turned off auto brightness nd the flickering on the bottom if my screen stopped

    • Awesome, ZimFinest. Glad to hear it worked out! Thanks for commenting.

  • Annabelle

    Hey, I got my screen replaced a while ago now, about 4-5 months ago? I’ve only recently experienced all the glitching in my screen, about a month now. It glitches A LOT when I do anything to do with a camera, e.g uploading a photo on instagram, on snapchat etc. I can’t even take pictures now without it going crazy. I can’t turn off/ update/ reboot my phone because the past two times I’ve done that, when I turn it back on it just shows a grey screen with the odd coloured lines. The first time this happened I turned it back on after about an hour and it started working again. The second time it wouldn’t turn back on so I had no phone for about 2 weeks and then I tried it again and it started working. I’ve tried adjusting the brightness and it’s done nothing. Help 🙁

  • kim

    My phone was flickkering when i woke up and it scared the hell out of me. I tried doing the brightness thing to the max but that didnt work so i tried minimizing the brightness. its okay now and can only go till medium brightness with flickkering.. @kimsuyin on twitter

  • Carlie

    My phone is doing the same as all of theirs but I have done everything everyone is saying to do but it’s still happening. I’ve re-started the thing at least 10 times now… I’m about ready to just throw it out the damn window -.- Try to help me please? The screen has never been replaced and the only place it’s cracked is on one of the back corners. It’s done this once before but i don’t remember what I did to fix it ):

  • Elenore

    thank you! Turning off the auto brightness worked for me. I had to leave the auto off a good 5 minutes for it to work though… you can’t just flip it off and on, that didn’t work for me.

  • Aziz

    thank you! Turning off the auto brightness worked for me.

  • Herby

    I had exactly the same problem, it’s a software fault, not hardware!
    If you installed Weblock (Adblock for iOS), remove it and reboot.
    I put my iPhone into DFU mode and restored it, the flickering returned.
    Then I decided to remove Weblock and all the problems dissapeared!

  • shae

    thanks so much it was fine all day until the screen went completely white so I restarted the phone and turned off auto brightness and is slowly but surely going away you just saved me $$$

  • lashawn

    this didnt work for me it been doing it for weeks now it did all of it . Now it has gotten worse

  • Lashawn

    this didnt work for me it continues to do this for a while and wont stop , i have did this 10 times and problems continues … what do i do

  • Randy

    I had my iPhone 4 for 4 years – no issues at all. I bit the bullet and upgraded to the crappy ios 7 yesterday. I got the white screen of death. As manual reboots didn’t work, I had to wait until the battery completely ran out. I then plugged it in and, thankfully, the phone started to charge. Now, the screen is flickering. My auto-brightness has always been turned off. I’m trying a restore from iTunes – will let you know how it goes. ios 7 sucks and it may move me to purchase a Samsung Galaxy S5 or and HTC One M8.

  • Randy

    Update – did a full restore from iTunes. Changed the brightness to about 1/3 of max. The flickering is still there at 40% or more of brightness but seems to be ‘okay’ at 1/3. If you haven’t yet upgraded your ios – DON’T. Apple really screwed up 7.1.2. My guess is they’re busy fixing other bugs and too blind to see the other bugs they’re creating. I really want to wait for the iPhone 6 before changing phones. What sucks is the my iPhone 4 was fine for 4 years until the moment I decided to upgrade to ios 7.1.2. Not a fan of Apple at the moment (then again, I never really was). Hoping Samsung and HTC continue to refine and improve their product offerings.

  • firewis

    i had just replaced my old iPhone 4s yesterday because i had cracked my screen and i got a new iPhone 4s and i hadn’t upgraded to 1.7.2 on the old one but did have a 1.7 update on my last backup so i had to update the new one to get the backup and now my screen flickers like crazy i didn’t have auto brightness on in the first place nor did i have it on full brightness i just came home from work and well its flickering like crazy

  • Jamal

    Hey hi i hav tried the method of turning off autobrightness and puling down brightness just below max..bt still i am facing the same probs..and including to that my screen is changing its colour in such a way tat inverting colour..when i tried to make a screen short of it the pic came as normal with out any invertion.. Can any one please giv me a solution for this problem.

    • Hi Jamal: Did you purchase your phone brand new? Or was it used? Are you sure it has a factory screen on it? Many time screen replacements are loose and start to do what you’re explaining. They can be fixed by opening the phone and tightening the plugs (warning: you’ll void the warranty and don’t do it unless you know what you’re doing). Taking a screen grab wouldn’t be affected by the screen itself.

      • Jo Loubin

        Josh what do you mean with “tightening the plugs”? I have this problem with my dother’s phone after i replaced the screen 2 months ago, now it flickers and turns into diverted colors, it even go’s black.

  • Not sure if this helps anyone, but some guy tried this and it apparently worked:

    My wife’s iPhone 4S had a screen flickering problem after installing iOS 7 GM, but has since stopped. I did do the trick of going into a dark room, turn off the auto brightness, slide to minimum setting, lock and unlock the phone, turn the auto brightness on again, turn on a light (held it close to the light to get the full brightness slider deflection), lock and unlock the phone and it will auto set the brightness properly. Not sure if this resolved the problem, but it hasn’t flickered since I did those steps…who knows?!

  • Shelby

    I plugged my 4s into a new charger and all the sudden it began to flicker. It only stops when the brightness is extremely low. I’m looking for a long term solution because having a dim screen 24/7 is not what I’m looking for. Any suggestions because I’ve already turned off auto brightness and reset the phone with the home and lock button.

  • Apple guy

    Just replaced screen to my 2 year old iPhone 4s, problem solved

  • Jerry

    I just replaced my screen problem still persists

  • Ronica

    Hi my phone started flickering out of the blue while at work. The screen was never replaced. I tried reducing the brightness and still flickering.

  • Gradius

    That is so true, only started having this problem after upgrading to 7.1.2. No problems before upgrading. Guess apple screwed up on the software. Lets wait for ios 8 see whether will it fix this or make it worse.

  • Mandy

    I tried turning off my iphone a few times but still the flickering continued then I also turned the brightness on and off a few times and that didn’t work BUT… I combined the two and now the flickering is gone! So I turned off the auto brightness and also reduced the brightness to under half. Then I turned of my iphone and left if off for about 5 mins. Turned everything back on and the flickering is gone! I hope this lasts.

    • Neihane

      I did the exact same thing but it didn’t work. I turned off and on the brightness and turned my iphone off but still flickers. It only stops when I adjust the brightness on its lowest. But when I put the brightness a lil higher, it flickers again.

      • hannah

        same with me I really need help to stop this 🙁

  • yasmin_pixie

    Just had my screen replaced why is it doing this?

  • Random Guy

    My iPhone just burnt the previous image to the screen and it stays there. It goes away after I turn it off for 5 minutes. But it happens again when I turn it back on. The phone’s graphic is really affecting me. Anyone knows how to solve this?

  • natrx

    This worked for me:

    As others mentioned, turn down your brightness all the way, turn off that auto Brightness.

    Turn off by holding the main push button and top button.

    Leave off for several minutes. Maybe 10 minutes. Turn back on.

    • Vishal விசால்

      Thanks .It worked for me too. I turned it off for 10 minutes and the flickering reduced. Then i tried turning it off for 30 minutes, it completely got well.

  • What is happening

    Hey guys I rebooted my IPhone and when I turned it on it was shaking please help

  • jen136

    I had the same problem, my iPhone 5c screen was flickering and was turning weird colors. It eventually just turned black and wouldn’t turn on for about 30 minutes, but after I rebooted it, it worked fine, but was still flickering and turning gray and green. I fixed the problem by turning down the brightness just a notch under full.

  • Sarah531

    Yes that worked for me. I always have auto brightness off anyway(because it zaps my battery) but taking the brightness right down and leaving it for a while and then increasing it seemed to sothe trick.

  • Zeinab

    The flicker stopped when I turned it all the way down but when I turn it up even a small bit it’ll keep glitching

  • Acurafiller

    Just adding to the conversation and hopefully to give a bit of confidence to people who encounter this issue with ipad 4: the procedures, as described, did the trick. My iphone 4 is now flicker-free. The circumstances: iPhone 4 (not S) / iOS 7.1.2. / Froze up during an attempted Skype phonecall. After numerous unsuccessful attempts to stop Skype the screen went slowly to a very pale blue with a couple of blank lines as if a line of pixels were dead. A hard reset (both buttons pressed) brought the phone back to life but the flicker was very noticeable. Remedies: I used the described procedure (turn down brightness all the way, turn off auto Brightness…etc) and the flicker became less noticeable but was still present. Retried the same procedure again and again and finally put the phone aside with brightness to minimal during a function that lasted several hours. after that I switched brightness back to normal and then to max and the flicker had disappeared.
    While performing my numerous attempts I browsed through your website and found your advice to free up some memory by removing/reinstalling apps. Theoretically this has no effect on the flickering but one can never be sure. Thanks for your excellent advice, Josh

  • jack

    turning the brightness down just makes it to you cant even see the colour pretty much lol, if your phone is glitching you have fault with your phone.

  • fay

    reset your settings and play around with the brightness and it should slowly decrease and go away

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