Do Not Disturb Feature Takes Itself a Little Too Literally
The “Do Not Disturb” feature that was unveiled with the advent of iOS 6 is a handy feature that is enjoyed by many iPhone users for a variety of reasons. The main reason is that a user can set hours during which alerts and calls (except for certain calls, as defined by the user) do not sound.
During the time DND is active, the screen remains dark. Everything DND does allows for a peaceful night of sleep, but sooner or later the alerts and calls need to come through.
Normally, the famous half-crescent moon that shows the feature is active appears and disappears on its own during the appointed hours, but for the past two days, users across the world have noticed missed calls and alerts, all because the feature didn’t turn off at the appointed hour.
Some users have reported on forums that they were able to eliminate the problem by turning off DND and then turning it on again, or by rebooting their iPhone.
We observed during some rather intense testing today that, at first, neither of these fixes worked. An hour or so later, however, we noted that toggling DND to “On,” and then “Off” in the Settings menu, and then “Off” back to “On” in the notifications menu, and tweaking the time parameters to sort of “flush out” the sytem did work.
Normally, such intense reconfiguring is not necessary, but with the arrival of 2013 came problems for the feature. It’s not the first time this sort of thing has happened; in 2010, users expecting their alarms to go off were disappointed after Daylight Savings Time went into effect.
The bug appears to affect those who have upgraded their devices to iOS 6, so iPhone 5 users are apparently immune from this particular bug.
There is some good news and bad news here. The good news is that it is indeed a bug, and nothing is wrong with your iPhone. There’s more good news: Apple is aware of this bug, and their crack team of coders is breaking a sweat to get the problem fixed for us all. Right? Right?
Well, no. Now for the bad news: Apple isn’t planning to do a thing about it.
Rather than roll out a fix, Apple is planning to let the problem ride until January 7, according to a support article posted on Apple’s website. At that point, apparently, whatever bug exists will mysteriously ride off into the sunset.
“Do Not Disturb scheduling feature will resume normal functionality after January 7, 2013. Before this date, you should manually turn the Do Not Disturb feature on or off,” the article states.
That’s the sum and whole of Apple’s solution to the problem, at least for now. This is a surprising response, because the bug couldn’t come at a more embarrassing time. Today, Apple unveiled a new ad extolling the virtues of DND, featuring the tennis-playing Williams sisters.
But we digress.
So what are we, the loyal iPhone users, to do until the 7th? Grit our teeth and manually activate and deactivate DND, just as the article says. While this problem is most aggravating indeed (full disclosure: the problem made this reporter literally see red this morning, and steam reportedly emerged from said reporter’s ears), let’s keep it in perspective: iPhones are still awesome.
Truthfully, not much effort is required to manually turn on and off the feature, or just flip the switch on the left side of the iPhone.
Hopefully, however, this problem will be fixed once and for all in an upcoming iOS upgrade.