Why Apple can not help me get my data out when the phone is still alive?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by m78220s, Mar 20, 2015.

  1. m78220s macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2015
    I felt really uneasy yesterday when I visited the Apple store and was informed that even though my phone was alive, I still had to see all my data lost, just because the touch screen of my phone was out. They can hook up a display to the phone and clearly see the lock screen. However, since there is no way to punch in the passcode, they still can not unlock the phone!

    This is a 3-month old iphone 6.

    The touch screen all of sudden went dark while I was watching some youtube video the night before my visit to the Apple store. The phone was still responsive, however a hard reset still could not bring up the screen. I couldn't even see the "Apple" shown on the screen while the phone was rebooting. I immediately panicked. Gosh, haven't backed up the phone ever since it has 64GB and I have way too much spare space left. I jumped to the iTune and launched the backup. Sorry! had to unlock the phone using passcode before iTune can backup the data. But ~~~ there is no way I can input the passcode! Maybe it is just the screen, I told to myself, switching out the screen should fix this, I was comforting myself on my bed.

    An almost sleepless night.

    Unfortunately, the visit to the Apple store didn't turn out any better. The technician informed me that it is not only the screen, must have been a processor in charge of the video/graphics gone bad. He can see the lock screen when he hooked the iphone to a display but there is no way the phone can take the passcode. The phone can be swapped at no charge but anything on the phone will be lost.

    I don't buy this, as an engineer working in the embedded field. The phone is alive, all functions well except for the touch screen (aka a peripheral device). How can it be that no one can help me get the data out? It is the phone itself lock me out!

    On the process of handling this matter, how can Apple not enable the field technician by using a customized utility, with my authorization, to unlock the phone to retrieve the data out before the phone is returned/recycled back to other departments inside Apple? Ok, if Apple can't ensure if the unlock process is performed lawfully in a store, how about allowing the phone to be handled in a central facility with an signed authorization from the customer? After all, the phone is still alive, and the data is still on the phone!

    On the design of the so-called pass-code enabled security is sth debatable, if, in this case, the path to input the passcode is disabled due to the malfunction of the phone itself, shouldn't there be a way to work around the passcode under such a special circumstance?

    I have been a iphone 4/4s/5/5s/6 user, and have bought all versions of ipad up to this moment. This incidence indeed left a very bad mark for me.

    Apple, how can this be that your representatives told me that I have to see my data lost live?
  2. steve knight macrumors 68020

    steve knight

    Jan 28, 2009
    I can't help you but why did you not have your phone backed up? so who is the bad guy here? if you had iCloud backup you could have walked out with a new phone that was just restored.
  3. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
    Your touchscreen does not work therefore the phone is inaccessible.

    The problem here is that your data is not backed up. In this day and age that should not be the case.
  4. Ke1ington macrumors 6502a


    Dec 29, 2009
    What about Touch ID?

    I won't go the "should have backed up; too bad" route but this will certainly go into the "lessons learned" drawer.
  5. jdogg836 macrumors 6502


    Jul 28, 2010
    If you've had that many devices and this is the first to take a dump, then you are doing very well statistically. If this one faulty device is enough to leave a bad mark, I'm sorry to say that you will more than likely end up disappointed with all electronic manufacturer's because most have an equal or worse track record.

    If the bad taste is due to them choosing to *NOT* weaken security so that they can gain access to your device, then I simply cannot stand on the same side of the fence as you. I choose my security over their ability to retrieve my secure data. If Apple can gain access, then so can any number of governments and hackers. We have enough issues in the world with this as it is. Anyone who is not smart enough to back up their data gets zero pity from me. Think of it this way, if the device dies completely and cannot even turn on then what would you do then? Always, always make backups. Apple makes it easy, in fact it's nearly 100% hands off after the initial setup.
  6. T5BRICK macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2006
    Apple clearly states that the data on the phone isn't their responsibility. You're talking about custom tools and sending the phone to a special facility for data recovery. This is expensive, and Apple doesn't cover it.

    How is it Apples fault that you didn't backup your phone?
  7. mKTank macrumors 68000


    Jul 2, 2010
    In iOS 8, data is encrypted before first phone unlock following a reboot. You pretty much locked yourself out when you rebooted it.
  8. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Apple has a hard rule about downloading any user data on there computers. Apple could get to your data but they will not do it.

    Backups are your friend.

    There are services that may be able to help you, but they will cost you some money. These recovery services might be able to help.
  9. MagicBoy macrumors 68040


    May 28, 2006
    Manchester, UK
    As an engineer working in the embedded field you should know the value of backing your data up.
  10. jdiamond macrumors 6502

    Dec 17, 2008
    Well, I for one sympathize with your situation. :)

    ... and I am so sorry you got a whole page of responses that were as callous as the Apple store. I know that hooking up your phone to your computer for a backup is a real pain (and somewhat risky), so you tend to not do it. And how many people have paid for 65 GB+ of iCloud storage?

    Here's the issue from a technical point - if Apple's done their job for security, then they shouldn't be able to pull out your data without your pass code. However, and this is the real point, Apple technicians should have some way to adjust your phone so that it is possible to enter the passcode. Your data is in non volatile flash. Best case - hook in a new screen chip or interface to your phone. Worse possible case, swap out your flash modules with those in the replacement phone.

    The bottom line is the Apple Store folks simply weren't trying hard enough to save your data. Look at all those PC shops that will retrieve data from your hard drive after the hard drive breaks and the files are deleted! IMO, that's a lot harder. But then again, Apple stores aren't really set up to be mechanics - for anything not completely trivial, they ship off your phone to California.

    Might just want to call up some third party Apple repair shops and see what they say.
  11. seadragon Contributor

    Mar 10, 2009
    Toronto, Canada

    This is where Touch ID could save the day. I take it that the fingerprint wasn't set up?
  12. srshaw macrumors 6502

    Aug 13, 2011
    Not sure this would help is the op said he rebooted the phone, so you need the passcode anyway.

    My other half lost her iphone and when I asked her for her icloud password, she said whats that. I guess some people really don't back things up.
  13. zone23 macrumors 68000

    May 10, 2012
    Thank god for iCloud backups am I right? Who's with me?

    Let me see I don't back my phone up... who can I blame, hmm...

    My data is the most important thing in the world too me what should I do... I know nothing.. I'll take my chances.

    Its all Apples fault, thats it..
  14. steve knight macrumors 68020

    steve knight

    Jan 28, 2009
    ICloud does not backup the whole 64 gigs music and apps and such are not backed up just re downloaded. ICloud backup is as reliable as Apple gets and is part of the phone setup.
  15. rick98761 macrumors 6502

    Feb 18, 2005
    Kansas City, MO
    I'm more confused that you say you didn't back up because you had a lot of free space left. That doesn't make any sense. Kind of scary that you work on the embedded field as an engineer to be honest. You should realize that a backup is not done just to free up space.

    Learn you lesson, use icloud or iTunes backup, and move on.
  16. m78220s thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2015
    It is shocking that so many people just take what Apple offers as the rules set by God.

    If I banged my phone and therefore lost all my data, I am the one to blame, period.

    The point is the phone is alive, and Apple refuses to offer to get the data out, despite the fact that only the touch screen malfunctions?

    Backup should not be the argument here. Can anyone guarantee that backup (being it hot or cold, or RAID enabled) will completely eliminate any kind of data loss?

    I think one gentlemen gets the point, the data is on a non valotile device, Apple at least should not just say it is lost without even give it a try under a special circumstance like this.

    I have yet to accuse Apple of anything, haven't I? I merely point out Apple needs to ack this can and should be improved in the future.

    Being in the storage industry, I can tell you the high end product line does offer the last resort shall a drive crash. As long as the data is still on the drive, it still can be saved.

    Last, this is not the only failed Apple product I have got. I have encountered 2 blue screened iPhone 5, no data loss there though.

    For the folks told me it is me at the fault, good luck with your data unless you back it up every second you have got something new, and your PC never fails, and iCloud is solid 100 percent. That should never happen?
  17. Tubamajuba macrumors 68020

    Jun 8, 2011
    Done with MacRumors, the trolls have won
    Nobody can ever guarantee that anything is 100% flawless. But is that really how you want to argue the statement that you should have backed up your device? Nothing can 100% prevent me from ever getting into a car accident, so should I stand up through my moonroof, drive with my feet, and fly down the freeway at 100 mph?

    That said, none of that changes how much it must suck to not be able to get data off your phone. I really do feel sorry for you, as we all make mistakes. As I type this, I remember that I haven't backed up my Mac in over a month. So I'll do that in just a minute.

    Did you ask the Apple Store if they can simply replace your screen? I'm pretty sure they do that for the iPhone 5, don't know about later devices though.
  18. MagicBoy macrumors 68040


    May 28, 2006
    Manchester, UK
    Says earlier in the thread that they tried this.
    By default all iPhones are now encrypted, hence the issue with getting the data off. It's somewhat more complicated than drag and drop and it's not something the local Apple store will be proficient in. In my opinion its a little unreasonable to expect an encrypted data recovery service when OP can't be bothered backing up using the provided tools either to a computer or iCloud. If that backup was corrupted then OP might have a more persuasive argument.

    We can't let personal responsibility get in the way of a good old fashioned rant now, can we?
  19. Tubamajuba macrumors 68020

    Jun 8, 2011
    Done with MacRumors, the trolls have won
    Alright, thanks for pointing that out. And yeah, I do think the responsibility lies with device owners to backup their devices regularly. Especially in this day of "set it and forget it" backups, everybody should get in that habit.
  20. yaboyac29 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2014
    is this a troll thread?

    if the display is not working, all they have to do is put in another display assembly and it will be fine.
  21. MagicBoy macrumors 68040


    May 28, 2006
    Manchester, UK
    I would suggest reading the thread before hitting the reply button next time.
  22. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    What are you going to do if you phone is stolen? Or falls in a lake? Or is damaged to the point where it won't turn on?

    You are acting like your situation is normal (the phone is damaged, but only slightly) but in reality you're in they vast minority here. The next time something bad happens you won't be able to make the argument that the data is still there and just needs rescuing. That's an extreme fluke. You should not be making your future plans based on that being the usual outcome. It's not.
  23. NT1440 macrumors G4


    May 18, 2008
    Before getting all defensive...can I ask how you think Apple can get into your phone? The device is encrypted after a reboot until the passcode is entered...you can't enter the passcode. What magical wand or backdoor do you think apple should put in? The whole problem here is that the device is actually secure...which isn't a problem.

    The problem is you haven't backed up the data that is important to you...apparently ever on this device. What solution should Apple have that doesn't completely undermine the whole point of the secure system? :confused:

    Don't get me wrong, the situation sucks, I'm just not sure what you think Apple can do here for you.
  24. pdxmatts macrumors 68000


    Jan 12, 2013
    Portland, OR
    I back up all our iPhone's to iTunes using Wifi, no need to hook it up anymore, unless you don't have Wifi.
  25. rick98761 macrumors 6502

    Feb 18, 2005
    Kansas City, MO

    I'm pretty sure I am 100% protected. I backup all my macs to a time capsule. All my important data is stored on dropbox, which is synced to 4 computers. One of those computers acts as a home NAS (with raid), which is also backed up to crash plan, and an external drive. All these backups are real time, with versioning. In order for me to have any data lose of significance the following would need to happen: my time capsule dies, dropbox looses all my data, my NAS dies, along with its backups stored on a local drive and crash plan.

    If all that happens there are bigger issues in the world, such as WW3.

    I'm not arguing everyone should have that in depth of a backup plan, but for someone that claims to work in the storage industry to trust apparently very important data to their iPhone, with no backups is foolish. I can sympathize with someone who doesn't know better a little bit, but you should know better.

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