iPhone 7 static while making calls

iPhone 7 static while making calls

Nice thing about having the Next package with AT&T is that I’m eligible for a phone upgrade every two years. AT&T has recently annoyed me to the Nth degree with issues that belong in an entirely different post. So we’ll stay on task. This year I took advantage of Next plan and picked up a shiny, new iPhone 7 Plus. I was terrified to upgrade to such a massive phone. I was perfectly happy with the standard size of the iPhone 6. But we’re Americans. We always want bigger…better…more. What I didn’t want was the iPhone 7 static experience – keep reading.

So far so good, I guess. I’m getting used to the size of the phone, how to transport it with my ‘standard’ work phone and how not to drop it.

For the most part the phone has delivered a nice experience full of features that will most likely take years to discover.

But wait. Yesterday the phone did something I didn’t like much. I clicked to make a call, held the phone to my ear and it let out a static shriek that damn near took the little hearing I have left.

My Tinnitus just got Tinnitus.

I made a few more calls. I discovered a few things:

1. The static sound was made when it was in normal phone mode (not speaker)
2. When I clicked on speakerphone, I could hear the caller, but they couldn’t hear me
3. I quickly solved the problem by shutting the phone off and back on (for now!)

So what causes this iPhone 7 static?

To be honest, I’m not sure. I’m almost certain its a software issue. The fact turning the phone on and off solved the issue was a relief. But if that doesn’t seem to work, you should perform a ‘hard restart’.

But wait, I can’t hard restart my iPhone 7!

Yes, you can. The process has just changed a bit. Apple’s iPhone 7 and 7 Plus may choke and require a forced reboot from time to time. With the iPhone 6s and earlier, pressing the Sleep/Wake button along with the Home button did the trick, but not so with the iPhone 7.

Here is some info from The Mac Observer on how to force reboot your >iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus.

iphone 7 static

Press the Sleep/Wake and Volume Down buttons together to reboot the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus.

Why the change, you ask? It’s because the iPhone 7’s Home button is solid state and requires your iPhone to be on and functioning before it can work. That’s not a problem with the physical Home button on older models, but technology marches on and now our Home button needs some software to do its magic.

Let me know if you’ve had this issue yourself. I’m curious as to if this is simply an iOS 10 issue and will resolve itself, or if it’s a hardware issue. I’m hoping the former. Either way, thanks for reading! And good luck with your new iPhone 7.

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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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  • Matthias Steinbauer

    We have a similar problem over here with an regular iPhone 7

    • Thanks for the comment. We can make a note that regular 7’s are also having the issue.

      • longtimecitychick

        My husbands phone just started having static after d/l iso 10 att told him he might need a new phone and that there would be a deductible(hasn’t even ad the phone 2 months) so we ARE NOT going that route. goin to the apple store let you know how he makes out

        • longtimecitychick

          went to the apple store today and the static they said was caused from the speakers. I still think it has something to do with the iso 10 . I have heard so many people had so many problems with the iPhone after the upgrade. But they gave him a new phone and he was very happy with the service and the outcome Gale

  • Christina

    Just had this exact problem after 3 days with new iPhone 7. Could not make a call out – just static. Had someone call me, and when I answered it was static. Data worked fine. Sadly, I returned the phone to Verizon (14 day warranty). It was unfortunate the salesperson didn’t actually even test the phone in this state, but immediately reset or rebooted. Nonetheless, back to my trusty 4 and I’m going to see if this is a phone I really want.

    • Crazy story! Sorry to hear about it. Mine fixed itself so I’m happy – but the static was ridiculously loud. Good luck and thanks for the comment!

    • Roy Lee

      Just my new iPhone 7Plus a week ago… and yesterday a weird thing happened. The other party cannot hear me but just static. I tried re-setting but didn’t work. The weird thing is that if I use Whatsapp Call, it’s ok.

  • TudorC

    Had a similar situation with a brand new iphone 7. So far I managed to find a connection between vibrate mode and the static noise that some times appears at the beginning of a call and lasts for a couple of seconds. It happens only when the iphone 7 is the one receiving the call. Also the noise appears when, during the call, you need to press the home button to navigate through some apps while still holding the call active.
    What I can tell from my tests is that if you disable vibration for incoming calls, the noise never appears. Would really help if any of you guys could confirm or not so I can tell if its just my device problematic or something software related.

  • J

    I have the iPhone 7 and I’ve had the same issue a few times now. First time was after having the phone for less than a day. Made a phone call and all I heard was static, on ear piece, as well as on speaker. Happened again recently where I received a call and the static started after a few seconds into conversation, switched to speaker, then back to ear piece and it went away for a second, but came right back. That’s happened twice now.

    Turned the phone off and seems to fix it for the time. I hope it’s a bug fix and not the phone itself.

  • PM

    I have exactly the same issue with the Iphone 6. Tried everything. Hard reset. Backup. Upgraded OS’s. Clean install. Even changed the phone twice. Still the problem persists. Always on the start of a new call. Also have hearing damage – and thanks to this, I suspect even more. Due to the fact more users have it, and with me it persisted over multiple divided, I suspect this problem is triggered by a specific app (and/or) setting. Apple is blissfully unaware of this problem, although I have been providing them with links, youtube vids, and even recently, this page. Apple is now finally investigating my issue using the log and exact times of the “sound panic” triggered in the phone. Took a year before they agreed to do so. Will share if I have more to report.

  • PM

    Hi Guys, just had an update from Apple. After long research, they concluded it can’t be the IPhone, since no other issues are brought under their attention. So the issues are “environment related”. I argues that even with environmental issue, the iPhone should not react like this. If you guys have this issue, please file a support request with them under “Loud Static Noise” and post your Support Issue number here. Tnx

  • Linda

    I also have had the static issue. AND, sometimes while on a call, my phone shuts off?! And the person I am talking to can’t hear me. I can hear them. What is up with that?

  • Stephanie Mathurin

    Hello everyone. I have been experiencing this static issue with my iPhone 7 since I upgraded a 2 month ago in January. Static would happen right before I made a call, or while I’m on a call and there would be times when the other person couldn’t hear me. Took the phone back to T-Mobile and they swapped it out with another brand new IPhone 7 (was still within my 14 day warranty) that didn’t help. They then changed out my sims card, that didn’t help. Called their tech line and they performed all their “diagnostic test”, that didn’t work. Finally I was really getting fed up with this static crap so yesterday 3/1/17 I took the phone to Apple. The young lady took my phone and performed their “Apple diagnostics”. Everything came back tip top with my phone. They found no issues. Afterwards she made a few calls and no static. So couldn’t figure out what was causing it. I was thinking to myself maybe they performed a more thorough diagnostic and that somehow took care of the problem…… until I slapped my phone back into its case and made a call and guess what? Static was back. Made a few more calls and you guessed it…. more static. Took the case off and made a call…. no static. So turns out for some reason some cases block the antenna reception. WTF?!?! Guess I’m just stuck.

  • PM

    Hi everyone – update from my side. I have spend months with apple on this issue and they came back with a very disappointing explanation. “influences from the outside” triggered this (which is a diplomatic way of saying it’s not their fault). Reason for this: they said NONE else reported this problem, but surely some of you here reported the same problem to Apple. Could you be so kind to post your support ticket numbers in this blog so I can communicate that to them. As I communicated to Apple: they should make a phone that under no circumstances (from the outside or otherwise) will send out a sound so loud it can (and will) cause hearing damage. PS any of you have “phone noise cancellation” switched on? (preference in accessibility menu)

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