Is Your iPhone 7 'Hissing'? Mysterious Noise Heard From Some Handsets

The noise is known as 'coil whine'.

A very small number of iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus users are reporting that their smartphones are ‘hissing’ when performing very complex tasks.

The barely-audible noise can reportedly only be heard from the Apple device in a silent room and when you hold the phone to your ear and no-one is reporting any adverse side-effects.

Lucy Nicholson / Reuters

While it might be frustrating to some users, the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are enormously powerful pieces of silicon capable of performing tasks at incredible speeds.

To put that another way, both phones are 120 times faster than the original iPhone.

What’s happening then? Well while Apple hasn’t yet openly commented on the issue, it seems highly likely that this is a case of ‘coil whine’. It’s a phenomenon which takes place when any piece of computer hardware is pushed to its limits.

It’s a common issue that affects most modern computers and takes place when the silicon is working extremely hard, causing tiny vibrations which then translate into sounds.

The Verge reports that while they can’t hear it on their iPhones, they can for example, hear it happening on the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge when held up to the ear in a silent room.


Now it’s important to note that this is all speculation and considering how small the issue appears to be, it’s unlikely that Apple will comment on it.

‘Coil whine’ does seem to be the most likely explanation though and as smartphones reach a level of computing ability that surpasses what many of us thought possible, this could become a more common theme.

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