Apple Fixes Group FaceTime Bug; Promises to Improve Bug Reporting Process

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On its servers, Apple has fixed a nasty Group FaceTime bug that allowed callers to eavesdrop on fellow Apple users. Next week it will release a software update to re-enable Group FaceTime.

What is the best way to report a general bug? I have a weird thing happening on my machine in which coming out of sleep my screen is briefly visible before the login screen appears. That is unquestionably a bug, and a rather serious one, too. But I have no idea how to alert someone technical enough to track it down (other than perhaps seeing whether someone I might know at Apple could help.) The idea of getting a developer account and then dealing with all that seems onerous. Plus, it is really inconsistent and without being able to provide steps for reproducing it, I can see it ending up in the “closed” bin.

Your best bet is AppleCare, but if you didn’t spring for that or your coverage expired you’ll have to pay for phone support.

Apple Genius Bar is next best. They should be willing to discuss with you when you show them.

Agree that developer account isn’t worth the effort. Writing Product-Security probably won’t work without a demonstration.

The Apple Feedback web site Is close to worthless for such situations.

I’m not sure I agree that this is a serious bug without actually seeing it though, as it doesn’t seem to me that a glance at your screen is at all exploitable.

Sent from my iPad


Does Apple ever charge for phone support anymore? I’ve never been asked in the slightest if what I’m calling about is somehow covered by a warranty.

In terms of reporting a general bug, the best way to do it is via Apple’s Bug Reporter, but that currently requires a Developer account. Someone who has one could do it for you, if you don’t. I’m sure there are some people here who are in the program.

Dev account? LOL. This thread nicely describes the problem. Why should anyone jump through hoops to report a bug to Apple?

What Apple should have is a nice and simple form on their website for anybody to enter. Ideally it should indicate important information that should be included so less savvy users (like the mom in this story) are assisted in reporting all relevant details to Apple’s engineers. The existing feedback form could be used for this, it’s anybody’s guess why Apple hasn’t implemented that.

Sure, Apple will collect spam and the submitted information will be noisy, but I’m sure their $250B can help with that. Bottom line, the very public display of Apple’s inability to get important information from an affected user to their engineers is far more expensive (not to mention outright embarrassing) than supplying a low-threshold reporting link. Considering how Apple has grown fond of advertising their take on privacy, this bug illustrates that they still have ample work left in terms of putting their money where their mouth is. I get it, a feedback form isn’t something Schiller can put on a Las Vegas billboard to sell gadgets. But if you really want to walk the walk…

Yeah, this is exactly the question—what will Apple do to make general bug reporting available to the public. I was blanking on the context slightly when I replied above and was thinking about purely this group.

I can see some of Apple’s thinking. You want to make the true bug reporting easy to do, but not a dumping ground for what people think are “bugs” but are technical issues or user problems that should be handled in support. A good screening team would help on this.