How to fix Apple iPhone screen unresponsive to touch that’s randomly freezing, not responding

Several factors can trigger touchscreen problems in smartphones. Some factors are software-related while others involve damaged components. Software-related touchscreen issues are those symptoms that occur when apps go rogue or bugs strike and cause the system to crash. The problem could be isolated to a certain application or operating system of your iPhone. Hardware-related touchscreen problems are usually due to previous drops or liquid exposure thus can occur from physical or liquid damage. iPhone screen unresponsive to touch. 

Troubleshooting iPhone XS Max with screen unresponsive to touches issue.

Among the widespread touchscreen problem symptoms is on random freezes or unresponsiveness. This is when your phone gets stuck and doesn’t respond to touch input commands. Before rushing to a service center, there are a few workarounds you can try to fix the problem on your end. Feel free to read on and refer to this walkthrough whenever you need help dealing with stuck or frozen iPhone XS Max touchscreen.

Before we move on to our troubleshooting, if you are looking for a solution to a different problem then visit our iPhone XS Max Help Guides as we already solved some of the most common issues with this device. We may already have published articles that could help you.

First solution: Clear all background apps to fix iPhone screen unresponsive to touch issue.

Background apps that have gone rogue can also cause the system to act up. As a result, the device becomes sluggish and may get stuck as apps or firmware crashed. To fix the problem, clearing all background apps is recommended. Doing so forces all running apps to quit and therefore allows your device to run smoothly and faster. To clear all background apps, simply follow these steps:

  1. From the Home screen, swipe your finger up and then pause.
  2. Swipe right or left to navigate through the apps preview.
  3. Then swipe up on an app preview to close individual apps.

If the problem started only after installing a new app, then that app must be the culprit. Try to disable the app temporarily or delete it from your iPhone completely. To delete an app on your iPhone XS Max, refer to these steps:

  1. From the Home screen, tap and hold on an app icon until the icons start jiggling.
  2. Tap the X on the rogue app’s icon.
  3. Read the warning prompt, and then select Delete to confirm deletion of the app.

Reboot your iPhone XS (soft reset) after deleting rogue apps. Then use it as you normally do and see if the problem is gone. If the screen still freezes, try the next method.

Second solution: Force restart your iPhone XS Max.

Performing a force restart ends all background apps including those that had crashed and caused conflicts to the touchscreen system. It also forces iOS to quit and allows it to reboot with no more glitches. Similar to a soft reset, a force restart does not affect saved data on the phone memory, thus creating backups won’t be necessary. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Press and quickly release the Volume Up button.
  2. Then press and quickly release the Volume Down button.
  3. Finally, press and hold the Side/Power button until the Apple logo appears.

Allow the phone to finish rebooting and once it boots up completely, use it and see if the problem is gone.

Third solution: Update apps and iOS to fix iPhone screen that is unresponsive to touch commands.

Fix patches to bug-inflicted issues on the phone are often found in updates to apps and iOS. Should the problem be triggered by an application bug, installing pending updates for your apps will likely fix it. That said, check for, download and install pending updates for your apps with these steps:

  1. Open the App Store.
  2. Navigate to the Updates section to view list of apps with pending updates.
  3. To update individual apps, tap the Update button next to the name of the app.
  4. To update multiple apps at once, tap the Update All button on the upper right side of the screen.

To rule out system bugs, try updating your iPhone XS Max to the latest iOS version.

  • To get started, go to Settings-> General-> Software update menu. Wait for the new update details to populate then follow the onscreen instructions to start downloading and installing new iOS update.

Your iPhone must have a stable Internet connection and sufficient power to complete the update installation. Reboot your device after successfully installing new update to iOS and see if that fixes the touchscreen problem.

Fourth solution: Reset all settings on your iPhone XS Max.

Settings that aren’t configured properly can also trigger these symptoms to occur. If your iPhone XS touchscreen started to act up after modifying some settings or customizing system options, then that must be the err. To rule this out, perform these steps to reset all settings on your iPhone XS Max. Doing so deletes all customized settings and then restores the original values without affecting any saved data on the phone memory. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Tap Settings from the Home screen.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down and tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Reset all Settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode, when asked to proceed.
  6. Then tap the option to confirm settings reset.

Wait for your iPhone to reboot, then reconnect your iPhone to Wi-Fi for you to use online apps and services again. Try and see if that fixes your iPhone XS Max touchscreen issue.

Fifth solution: Restore your iPhone XS Max to factory defaults.

The problem might be very complex that it won’t be resolved by any of the prior methods. To deal with persistent software issues caused by complex system errors on the phone, performing a factory reset or master reset is recommended. This however should only be deemed as the last resort since it will wipe everything from the phone system. Should you wish to take a chance at this method, back up all critical data from the memory to iCloud or iTunes. Then continue with these steps:

  1. Tap Settings from the Home screen.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down and tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Erase all content and settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode, when asked to continue.
  6. Then tap the option to confirm factory settings reset.

After the reset, your iPhone reboots automatically and then reloads the factory defaults. To use your iPhone XS Max as you normally do, continue with the initial setup process to enable necessary features, reinstall valuable apps, and restore important files on your device.

Other options

If your iPhone screen is still freezing or unresponsive to touch and swipe commands, you may opt to troubleshoot further and resort to iOS restore either through recovery mode or DFU mode. Otherwise, escalate the problem to your device carrier or Apple Support for further assistance and more advanced solutions.

You may also consider opting for service and take your iPhone to the nearest Apple-authorized service center and ask the technician to examine your device. The touchscreen problem you’re dealing with may be attributed to some sort of physical or liquid damage on the touchscreen components and that therefore needs physical repair.

I hope that this how-to post has helped you one way or another. Please help us spread the word by sharing this post to your friends or people who may also have similar problems. Thanks for reading!

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