Is your iPhone’s screen looking a little sickly lately? A software update might be just the medicine it needs.
Reports of green-tinted iPhone screens have been cropping up since as far back as June. According to users who experience the bug, the green display only shows up for several seconds when the phone is turned on or when it transitions to Dark Mode or Night Shift.
The bug seems to primarily affect the iPhone X and iPhone 11, 11 Pro and 11 Max, but it has also appeared on other iOS devices running iOS 13.4, 13.4.1, 13.5 or 13.5.1.
The good news is that you don’t need to send your device in to Apple’s repair service to fix the issue — just install the iOS 13.6.1 update and the green distortion should go away.
No one knows why your iPhone is looking green
The bug may be fixed, but its cause is still a mystery. According to Apple’s iOS/iPadOS 13.6.1 patch notes, a software-based thermal management issue causes the momentary display discoloration, but the exact mechanism that is giving your screen that peeked hue (and how Apple fixed it) remains unclear.
I’ve seen some forum speculation that there may be a hardware throttling issue involved, but the problem tends to occur when the screen is using less power, not more. So throttling the hardware to fix it doesn’t make much sense.
The iOS/iPadOS 13.6.1 patch doesn’t just alleviate the sickly screen tint. It also fixes a couple of other iPhone/iPad bugs, so it’s worth installing the patch even if you haven’t experienced the green display issue.
One of the squashed bugs is a frustrating data storage error wherein unnecessary system files were not being automatically deleted — something iOS is supposed to do when a device is running out of free storage space — causing iPhones to fill up with junk files. The patch also fixes a bug that disabled COVID-19 exposure notifications.
You can update and iPhone or iPad to the latest software version by going to Settings > General > Software Update.