How to Fix Face ID not Working on iPhone 11, XR, and XR Max

iPhone Face ID not working could be life-threatening when your phone is just useless because you are locked out from your phone. That is why I prefer to use password or PIN over the Face ID and fingerprint unlock features. The Face ID and other lock features are to improve the security of your iPhone but your day could end in dismay when the Face ID is not responding or recognizing your appearance. That is a big slap because it could take you hours to fix if you are a novice.

The iPhone Face ID problem is common in the iPhone XR and iPhone XS Max. Some Apple iPhone user also experience iPhone Face ID not working after updating to 11.2. iPhone 11 users are also complaining. However, this guide will address all iPhones with Face ID.Face ID not working on iPhone X, XR, 11, and XR Max

iPhones with Face ID

Lower iPhones like iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6, 6 Plus, etc do not have the Face ID security feature. Apple started the introduction of the Face ID on September 12, 2017. This means that all iPhone produced on and after September 12, 2017, has the Face ID security feature and are partially waterproof. These phones include;

  • iPhone 11
  • iPhone 11 Pro
  •  iPhone 11 Pro max
  •  iPhone X
  •  iPhone XS
  •  iPhone XS Max
  • iPhone XR

As part of our commitment to this post. We’ll take a look at the general approach to fix Face ID problem in iPhone 11 (all variants) and iPhone X (all variants).

How to Setup iPhone Face ID

Meanwhile, the first approach that we’ll take a look in is to help you configure your Face ID. You don’t need to skip this, check through to see if there is something that you need to enable or turn off in your settings.

  • Go to your iPhone settings.
  • Click on “Face ID & Passcode”.
  • Enter the unlock code [IF] prompted.
  • Click on “Set up Face ID”.
  • Position your iPhone in portrait.
  • Click on “Get Started”.
  • Position your head into the frame facing the Face ID capturing and make sure that it fully captures your real look. Do not smile or frown or shrink your face. 
  • Click on “Continue” when you are done with the Face scan.
  • Move your head around gradually to the left and right when the second Face scan circle comes up.
  • Tap “Done” when completed.

Now, you will be prompted to set up your passcode if it has not been set to regain access to your Apple device when the Face ID is malfunctioning.

Note: When you are configuring your Face ID make sure you look as you always look. Apply too much makeover or putting on different look such as in your hairstyle can affect how your iPhone Face ID works.

Update your iPhone OS

You first need to find out that your iPhone has the Face ID unlock feature otherwise the security feature will not be available for you. Once your device has the Face ID but not working with the proper settings go ahead to check whether your device has a new update.

Note: Charge your iPhone to at least 50 – 70 % or connect it to a power source before you start the OS updating.

  • Go to your iPhone settings.
  • Click on the “General” tab.
  • Click on “Software” to search for the latest update (if there is any).
  • Click on “download and install”.
  • Done.

This should fix the Face ID on your iPhone 11 or other supported iPhones and if it doesn’t, move to the next step.

Note: If you have a free data at night or the network is too slow during the day select “install tonight” to install the OS update while you are asleep.

Confirm you Face ID Configuration

You Face ID settings must be configured properly otherwise you will have a problem using the unlock feature when you need it most.

  • Go to your iPhone settings.
  • Click on “Face ID and Password”.
  • Check if it’s properly configured.

If the Face ID is poorly configured the feature will be malfunctioning.

Face the Camera Squarely

If you are not facing the camera properly when the Face ID unlock security comes up the unlock feature will not be able to capture your face just like it did when you were setting up the Face ID.

You may also want to confirm that your look is no different from what the device has on its database. If it does you may find it extremely difficult to play a decoy with the device to accept what is not registered.

Reset Face ID Set up

This will erase the initial scan and you will start afresh set up if you ever want to use the security feature to unlock your device.

  • Go to your Apple iPhone XR settings.
  • Click on “Face ID and Passcode”.
  • Click on “Reset Face ID”.
  • Done.

Now, the previous Face ID that is not working will be erased after which you will need to set up a new one following the procedures above.

Face ID Alternative

When Apple introduced the AI to use Face ID to unlock iPhone they knew the time will come that the Face ID will need troubleshooting. However, with that in mind, Apple users are enjoyed to set up Face ID alternative in case the unlock feature isn’t working.

  • Go to your iPhone XR Max settings.
  • Click on “Face ID and Passcode”.
  • Enter your unlock code when prompt.
  • Click on “Set up an alternative appearance”.
  • Look into the Face ID scan frame and make sure your face cover the whole frame without a trace of your head hair and ears. Ths whole frame should be filled with your scape to your chin.
  • Repeat the same look in the circle frame as you did in the step above.
  • Click “Continue” when you have successfully scanned your face the second time.
  • Click “Done”.

This will help you to reconnect your appearance and the “Face ID” appearance when the unlock feature isn’t working on your iPhone 11.

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