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FaceTime shows random, old pictures when initiating a call

61589 Views 52 Replies Latest reply: Sep 23, 2012 2:05 PM by cme2se RSS
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kar0786 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
Mar 22, 2011 8:04 PM
My boyfriend and I have both recently experienced this problem several times - when one of us is calling the other via FaceTime, an old picture freezes on our screen, while the person receiving the call only sees a black screen. It's kind of creepy, because it brought up photos of both of us at work, where I have used FaceTime a few times but he never has. We're just wondering how/why this is happening, and if there is a fix. It's not terribly inconvenient, but it's definitely unsettling, where is seems that even if we haven't taken a picture or used FaceTime, the camera is keeping images. If anyone else is experiencing this, we'd love feedback. Thanks!
iPhone 4, iOS 4
  • -MrGQ- Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    This is very weird. I am experiencing the exact same issue recently. Most notably just minutes ago when i called my GF and i saw a "picture" of myself from today when i was at the office. I know it was from today because i had the exact same shirt. The weirdest thing is that picture is not stored on my iphone. Anyone else experiencing this?
    iPhone 4, iOS 4
  • Bunnyeater Calculating status...
    Same happens to me when I start a call so I hav to wait for them to pick up and then call them back again for it to work

    P.s do you have Problems with ur mic not working for very long only un FaceTime ??
    iPhone 4, iOS 4
  • nasetron Calculating status...
    I'm having the exact same problem. Very creepy for my phone to be taking pictures of me when I haven't told it to. I've talked with Apple support about this, and they had me restore my iPhone and set it up as a new device... so instead of reloading everything from a backup, I manually reinstalled all my apps and settings.

    The problem didn't go away after that, so they actually had me return it to an Apple store and swap it out for a new one. This also didn't help. In my mind, I think these facts narrow the issue down to either the firmware (I'm on 4.3, haven't yet updated to 4.3.1) or some app I have installed. In the interests of isolating the problem, I'm appending a list of the apps I have installed. Do you folks see anything in common with your own setup? Hopefully we can narrow it down to just one or two apps (or if we don't all have anything in common, narrow it down to a firmware bug). Here's the list:

    Alien Blue
    Beejive IM
    Bejeweled 2
    Bit Trip Beat
    Cabela's Recon Hunt
    Checkword
    Cut the Rope
    Doodle Jump
    Facebook
    iBooks
    Kindle
    Netflix
    Pandora
    Shazam
    Southwest Airlines
    Tetris
    The Weather Channel (paid version)
    Tilt to Live
    Tiny Wings
    Urbanspoon
    Winchester Ballistics Calculator
    Word Lens
    Words With Friends (paid version)
    iPhone 4, iOS 4
  • maddad Calculating status...
    I have had the exact same problem. My Bf and I both have the 4 but I have the newest OS update and he doesn't. I am the only one whose phone does this. I will try to facetime him and a "picture" of my from the last facetime call I made shows up and sometimes it does it several times in a row. He hasn't had a single problem with his yet though so we are pretty sure its in the software somewhere.
    iPhone, iOS 4
  • Detroit313 Calculating status...
    This just happened to me yesterday.

    I have a dashboard mount for my phone. I had left the phone in the car when I ran in to get my sandwich. This was at a strip mall that I had never visited before and never connected to any WiFi. I parked in the middle of the lot, about 75ft from the doors to Subway. Ran it, got my food, hopped back in the car. I hit the button to see if anyone called me (no one did) and drove off. After I got in to where I was working and ate my sandwich, I tried to use FaceTime and saw a frozen image of me in the car from 20-30 minutes prior!

    iPhone 4
    iOS 4.3.1

    The apps that I have that match the other post are:

    Cut the Rope
    Facebook
    iBooks
    Netflix
    Pandora
    Shazam
    Shazam (Paid)
    The Weather Channel (free version)
    Urbanspoon
    Word Lens
    iPhone 4
  • sandbox32 Calculating status...
    kar0786 wrote:
    My boyfriend and I have both recently experienced this problem several times - when one of us is calling the other via FaceTime, an old picture freezes on our screen, while the person receiving the call only sees a black screen. It's kind of creepy, because it brought up photos of both of us at work, where I have used FaceTime a few times but he never has. We're just wondering how/why this is happening, and if there is a fix. It's not terribly inconvenient, but it's definitely unsettling, where is seems that even if we haven't taken a picture or used FaceTime, the camera is keeping images. If anyone else is experiencing this, we'd love feedback. Thanks!

    Take a look at this comment on Hacker News (reproduced below): http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2414054

    I haven't developed on iOS but I remember reading someplace that when an app is loading it can display an image of what it looked like when the user most recently left it, in order to give the appearance of loading more quickly. I think it was one of Marco Arment's blog posts, but his site isn't available right now.
    Anyway I also don't have an iPhone 4, but FaceTime for OS X shows the camera view whenever it's on so that you can see yourself whenever starting a call. I imagine FaceTime for iOS does something similar.
    If you combine those two things, you get one possible explanation for what's going on. One that's pretty benign, but should probably still be avoided because it obviously spooks users. Oh, and it should probably be at the API level so that the last thing an app saves is never camera data.
    MacBook Pro (13”, mid-2010); 16 GB 1st generation iPod touch, Mac OS X (10.6.7)
  • nasetron Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    @sandbox32

    That's not a bad thought, but it's not what's going on here. Some of the images that have been coming up on mine are from times and places when I know without a doubt that I haven't been using facetime.
    iPhone 4, iOS 4
  • Detroit313 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Same as nasetron. I most definitely wasn't and in fact couldn't have been using FaceTime when the image was captured.
  • drStrangeP0rk Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Hi all, I have not been able to duplicate the issue so here are some things to try and some questions I have.

    Does it happen when the phone locks, when you switch to another APP, or when you have many APP's open?
    Are you using any service for photos or Apple's ME.com Photo gallery. Any services such as that?
    Are you phones un-altered, namely not jail broken or unlocked?

    1. Report the issue here to this Apple discussion thread indicating what applications are running, hardware and software on the device. Details help allot!

    2. Make sure you are running the latest firmware and iOS version. Use iTunes and update the device.

    3. Remove the APP from iPhone and iTunes and then do a restart of the device. This will ensure that settings are removed. Do not restore from backup...

    4. Download any APP updates or software updates for your device.

    5. Install FaceTime from the APP store again after completing step 3.

    6. Clear the photos on your device saving them to your Mac/PC and then reload them using iTunes.

    Lets try to clear it off the phone and see what happens. Make sure we have all the latest and greatest.
    Xserver,all, Mac OS X (10.5.6)
  • The_Mac_Daddy Calculating status...
    Hahahaha, what is this, a late April Fool's joke? This is obviously not true, considering it's impossible.
    MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.7)
  • nasetron Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Right, it's both an early and a late April fools joke. We've been rolling with it since March 22, and here it is April 6 and we're still not giving up.

    I assure you that while this is a strange bug, it absolutely is possible. Did you have anything to add, or did you create this account just for trolling:

    TheMacDaddy
    Posts: 1
    Registered: 4/6/11
    iPhone 4, iOS 4
  • pvm25 Calculating status...
    I am having the same problem. I have a latest update iOS 4.3.1 while my girlfriend hasn't updated yet. When we facetime many times my video displays some random pic it has taken during day and she sees black screen. It is happening randomly, sometimes when my phone is locked and I get facetime call from her or sometimes during regular call when one of us starts facetime. I think there is a bug in latest firmware because it is happening from my side only, her cam works fine all the time.
    iphone 4, iOS 4
  • superbungalow Calculating status...
    I've had this before. I think what's happening is FaceTime simply accesses the last image taken by the front camera. For example if I use skype and then FaceTime occasionally an image will appear from when I was on skype. So the creepy thing here I think is that other apps are taking photos using the front camera at random times. I don't know why this would be but based on what I've seen it's either that or the actual OS taking photos which would be a lot weirder.
    iMac 2.8GHz 24", Mac OS X (10.5.6), 1 Dead Pixel :(
  • The_Mac_Daddy Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Lets see a video of it happening. Post it on YouTube and give us the link. Prove that you're not trolling.
    MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.7)
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