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Apple iPhone SE Camera Issues: Blurred photos, out of focus, flash not working, camera app unavailable [Troubleshooting Guide]

Need help with certain issues on your #Apple iPhone SE (#iPhoneSE) camera? This post contains standard troubleshooting procedures and recommended workarounds used to deal with camera app issues on the iPhone SE. Should you come across this page while searching for solutions to a pertinent issue on the same device, then you better read on and give any of our suggested solutions a try.

Camera is among the key features of today’s smartphones. As a matter of fact, most buyers would look into the camera specs before picking the best phone brand to procure. That is why if something goes wrong and the camera app suddenly fails to function as it should, then you will definitely not like it.

Apple’s high-end mobile devices like the iPhone SE sports great camera features especially with the iOS 10 platform. While many users are bragging about every camera shots they’ve produced, others are not getting the same positive experience with the phone’s camera app. In fact, some owners have claimed that after a number of instances of normal usage, the iPhone SE’s main camera has started to deliver an unexpected error while others have their iPhone camera not working after failed attempts.

Other Relevant Camera App Symptoms

  • Camera app stopped working or keeps crashing
  • Flash not working, won’t turn on or no flash at all
  • Front and back cameras are completely black
  • Photos are blurry, poor quality
  • Photos are out of focus
  • Camera app missing on the Home screen
  • Camera app freezing or unresponsive

But before you continue, you may also want to visit our official Troubleshooting Page for iPhone SE if you are looking for a solution to a problem. We’ve already addressed some of the most common issues reported by our readers and there might already be solutions to your problems. So, find issues that are similar with yours and use the solution we suggested. If they don’t work, then feel free to contact us by completing our iPhone issues questionnaire.

Possible Causes

There are several factors that can cause problems or error occurrences while using the camera app on your iPhone. Some camera issues/errors could occur due to misconfigured settings within the app. In some cases, third-party apps and accessories are to blame. Meanwhile, some owners of the iPhone SE have encountered problems with the camera following the iOS 10 update. All these are associated with the software, and so hiring a technician for repair wouldn’t be necessary.

In worst case scenarios, the camera malfunctions could manifest due to a faulty hardware. Unfortunately, if the problem is caused by the latter, your only option is to take your iPhone to an Apple technician for hardware check-up and/or repair unless you are up for an iPhone camera overhaul challenge. But then again before you do any hardware fixing matters, you can try any of the following solutions, for who knows the problem might have just been triggered by some software glitches.

Manufacturer-Recommended Solutions and Workarounds for iPhone Camera Problems

Considering the main problem only lies within the software, you still have a higher chance of getting it fixed without taking your iPhone to an Apple Genius bar and pay for repair cost. Highlighted below are potential solutions and widely used workarounds to deal with camera app issues on the iPhone SE smartphone.

Feel free to refer to the following workarounds and standard troubleshooting procedures recommended by Apple to those who are dealing with Camera problems on your iPhone.

Fixing Closed Lens or Black Screen on the Camera app

Follow these steps if you are seeing a closed lens or black screen when you launch or open the Camera app:

  1. Ensure the camera lens is not blocked. If you are using a case, you can try to remove the case and open the camera app again. Also make sure you are not holding anything behind your iPhone as you are trying to take a picture as it could be your finger that is blocking the camera lens.
  2. Force-close the camera app and then open it again. To force close an app, double-click the Home button to view your most recently used applications. Next, swipe right or left of the screen to find the Camera app. Finally, swipe up on the camera app’s preview to close it.
  3. Reboot your iPhone and then open the camera app again. Majority, if not all app issues triggered by minor software glitches are resolved by a simple restart or reboot on the device. To reboot your iPhone, press and hold the Power button until the red slider appears. Drag the slider to turn off your iPhone completely. After a few seconds, press and hold the Power button again until the Apple logo appears.

Fixing Blurred Photos or Photos that are out of focus

Here are some things you can try on if your photos came out to be blurred, out of focus or have dark spots:

  1. Ensure the camera lens is clean. If necessary, clean the lens with a microfiber cloth. However, if you are seeing some dirt or debris, scratches or cracks inside the camera lens, then you should take your iPhone to an authorized Apple technician to have it repaired or replaced.
  2. Remove any case or magnetic lens and take a picture again. Try to take a picture with your iPhone not having any case or magnetic lens and compare the quality of the results. This way, you can eliminate the possibility of a case or magnetic lens is interfering with the optical image stabilization of your iPhone camera.
  3. Adjust the focus manually. In order to focus on a certain object, you need to tap that object or person on the preview screen. As the camera adjusts, you will see the screen pulse, or shortly go in and out of focus. While in photo mode, try to stay steady when adjusting the focus. The camera won’t automatically refocus to the center if you move too far in any direction. If you are in video mode, you can adjust the focus before you start recording a video.

Also make sure to take your time to watch what is in the focus before pressing the shutter button to snap the photo. It is also possible that you might just be focusing incorrectly.

Fixing camera flash that is not working

Several factors can cause your iPhone camera flash to not work as it should. The flash may not function if the LED flash is damaged or when you are using an incorrect setting.

Try the following workarounds if your iPhone’s camera flash is not working:

  1. Test the LED flash. To do so, go to the Control Center and then turn the flashlight off and on. If the LED does not work as a flashlight, then it could be an indication of a hardware problem. In this case, contact Apple Support for further assistance and other recommendations.
  2. Check your flash settings. You can first check your flash settings if the flash is not working or goes off every time you take a picture. To do so, tap the flash or lightning bolt-shaped icon located in the upper left of the screen to select a different setting.
  3. Let your device to cool down. If you are seeing a message prompt saying the flash is disabled, or you’re using the device in a very warm environment while taking extended video with the flash on, all you have to do is to wait until your device cools down. The message will automatically disappear by then.

Your iPhone is programmed to disable the LED flash when it gets too hot as it can increase heat output in itself. No need to worry though because it will pass after the iPhone cools down enough.

Fixing a camera app that is not available or missing

In case you don’t see the camera app or the app is missing on your Home screen, it’s possible that the Camera app is blocked in your Settings. Here’s what you can do first:

  • Method 1: Use Spotlight Search and search for Camera. This is a how you perform a quick search of anything within your iPhone database. To do so, drag down from the center of the Home screen, type in “Camera” in the search field, then tap the Camera app.
  • Method 2: Check iPhone Restrictions Settings. For some reasons, your access to the Camera app might have been restricted thus, the Camera app is not available on the Home screen. To eliminate the possibility of the Camera app being blocked, you can go to Settings-> General-> Restrictions-> then scroll to the Allow section and make sure that Camera is turned ON. The camera app should appear back on your Home screen after that.

Note: You may need to enter the passcode to un-restrict the app so be sure to have it ready.

Another possible reason as to why the Camera app is missing on your Home screen is that it might be moved to a differently page or a new folder that were not aware of. This is a common problem for those who share their device with more than one person because often times other person will customize the Home screen app icon layout the way he wanted. In this case, try to check all your other pages and folders.

User-Recommended Solutions and Workarounds

The following workarounds are suggested by other iPhone SE owners who have encountered and fixed certain camera problems with the same device. While there is no guarantee that these solutions would always work as it does to other owners, you may still consider giving any of these methods a try for now.

Step 1. Clear the Camera App Cache.

Many users were able to deal with camera failures by clearing the cache partition on their iPhone SE. It does make sense because caches may sometimes contain corrupt files and thereby causing irregularities to your iPhone’s functionality, particularly on the camera software.

Here’s how to clear the camera app cache on your iPhone SE:

 

  • Navigate to Settings-> General-> Storage & iCloud Usage.

 

    • Tap Manage Storage.

 

  • Tap to select an item in Documents and Data.

 

  • Slide unnecessary or unwanted items to the left and then tap Delete.
  • To remove all app’s data, tap on Edit, then select Delete All.

Note: Do not select the option to Clear Data because if you do so, you will lose all the information stored in the Camera app.

Step 2. Uninstall and reinstall the application (optional).

If you are using a third-party software as alternative to your iPhone’s stock camera, then you can try performing a complete app uninstall, to remove all related files, settings, and data from your iPhone SE. After then uninstall, re-install the app to try to fix any download errors and to ensure the app is running the latest software version available.

Step 3. Force your iPhone to restart.

If the camera app is frozen and the screen is unresponsive, then you can force your iPhone to restart. To do so, press and hold the Power button and the Home button simultaneously for 10 seconds until the Apple logo appears.

Step 4. Restore your iPhone.

If the problem started to emerge after getting the latest iOS patch for your device, then most likely it is an iOS bug that’s causing it. In this regard, you may opt to restore your device to a previous backup or set it up as new through factory reset. Again, please note that all your personal information and settings will be erased in the process.

More Helpful Tips

Below are some tips to help you make the most of your Camera app and photos that you take with your iPhone SE camera:

  • Be sure to manage your photo storage so as to ensure you always have enough space for your photo and video collections.
  • Keep your photos and videos updated on all of your devices with iCloud Photo Library.
  • Delete any unnecessary or unused photos to free up some storage space for more photos and videos.

If the problem continues even after performing all the recommended workarounds and troubleshooting procedures, then a hardware problem is most likely present on the device. In this regard, contact your carrier or Apple Support to escalate the problem. Otherwise, you may take your iPhone SE to an authorized technician/servicer center for hardware check and/or repair.

Engage with us

If you have other issues with your Apple iPhone SE, we are always willing to help. Contact us through our iPhone issues questionnaire and provide us with all necessary information about your problem so we can find a solution to your issue.

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