iPhone Microphone Not Working? Try these Fixes

It’s super frustrating when your iPhone microphone is not working as you cannot make phone calls, use Siri or send voice memos.

Also, you might be in an important class or meeting recording the lecturer’s presentation. With a faulty microphone, you’ll end up with low-quality audio.

You probably would have a clue about the issue. However, your immediate reaction might be to take your iPhone to the nearest Apple Store for repair.

Before you do that, check the troubleshooting tips below. They could possibly solve your iPhone microphone not working problem.

Check Your Microphones

The newer models of iPhones come equipped with three microphones. One is located at the top, another at the bottom, and a third is at the rear around the camera. You should try to test each microphone to determine which one is malfunctioning.

Start with the microphone at the bottom and record an audio file using the voice memo application. Since the other two are implemented for the front and rear camera, all you have to do is record two short videos using the selfie and rear camera.

After that, you should check the audio quality of the recorded file and the videos. As you review each file separately, you know which microphone is faulty. Then, you should consider the following solutions to fix the microphone.

1. Try Restarting Your iPhone

It is not surprising that we advise you to restart your phone first. Some software bugs might lead to microphone problems. Some of these bugs could be fixed simply by attempting a restart.

2. Update Your iOS

Updating your operating system is always worth a try. With every new update, the developers are actively trying to eliminate bugs and glitches.

Your microphone problem might be one of those glitches that have been addressed in the latest update. To update your iOS:

  1. Go to Settings.
Open settings app
Launch iPhone Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Tap on General.

General Menu in Settings
Go to General. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Then select Software Update.

Software update in General menu
Tap on Software Update. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

There, you can download the latest version of iOS on your phone. If your iPhone microphone still not working, proceed to the next solution.

3. Clear the Microphones

Check if your iPhone’s screen protector or case is blocking the microphones. Usually, the suitable models are designed perfectly to consider the microphone openings.

However, incompatible third-party cases or incorrectly installed screen protectors could cause problems with the microphones. So removing the case and the screen protector is worth a shot.

4. Clean the Microphones

Over time, dust and debris might accumulate in the microphone openings of your iPhone, which could affect the audio quality considerably.

That could be the reason your voice sounds muffled to other people on phone calls or recorded videos.

You can use any brush (like a toothbrush) to clean the microphone hole. However, avoid using compressed air as much as possible since it could cause damage to the internal components of your phone.

It goes without saying that inserting sharp objects into the microphone hole could further damage your iPhone, so strictly avoid doing that.

5. Disconnect All Accessories

It might be that your wireless headphones or earbuds have automatically connected to your phone, in which case your iPhone’s microphone wouldn’t function.

So, make sure that all the devices are disconnected. Keep in mind that all other wireless devices (such as your car’s Bluetooth system and an external Bluetooth speaker) that might connect to your phone could be the source of the problem. So, to disconnect all the devices:

1. Head over to the Settings.

Open settings app
Launch iPhone Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Then touch Bluetooth.

Bluetooth in Settings app
Go to Bluetooth settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Now turn it off.

Disabling bluetooth
Disable Bluetooth. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

You could also do that through the control center.

6. Try Turning Noise Cancellation Off

Your iPhone’s operating system automatically turns on Noise Cancellation to decrease ambient noise when you make a phone call.

It might be that this feature is not functioning properly and is muffling your voice instead of the intended ambient noise.

To make sure that this feature is not reducing your audio input, turn it off from Settings. To do that:

1. First, open Settings.

Open settings app
Launch iPhone Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Next, scroll down to Accessibility.

Open Accessibility in Settings app
Accessibility in iPhone settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Select Audio/Visual.

Audio and Visual in Accessibility
Select Audio/Visual in Accessibility. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

4. After that, Phone Noise Cancellation.

5. Turn it off.

Note that if you have an iPhone 13 model, you will not see this feature because it is not available on these devices, according to Apple support.

7. Make Sure the Intended Application Has Access to the Microphone

It is often overlooked that applications need to have permission from the user to access the microphone on the device.

If specific applications have problems with the microphone, check your settings to see if they are granted access to the microphone.

1. Go to Settings.

Open settings app
Launch iPhone Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Then find and tap on Privacy.

Privacy in Settings app
Go to Privacy. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Touch Microphone.

Microphone Settings in Privacy.
Microphone Settings in Privacy. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

There, you can see which applications have access to the microphone and which don’t. If the problem persists while making phone calls, try turning all applications’ access to the microphone off.

Microphone-enabled apps
Microphone-enabled apps. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

Then, have somebody call your phone and check if they still have any problems hearing your voice.

8. Restart the App That Has Problems with the Microphone

It is possible that a communication app like WhatsApp or Telegram might have problems with your device’s microphone. Try reopening that application.

However, if your iPhone microphone not working, proceed to the next step.

9. Reset Your iPhone to Default Settings

The last step in every troubleshooting process is to reset your phone to the default settings. There is a chance it could resolve your problem.

1. First go to Settings.

Open settings app
Open Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Then tap on General.

General Menu in Settings
Head over to the General menu. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Scroll down to Transfer or Reset iPhone and touch it.

Transfer and Reset iPhone in General menu
Tap on Transfer or Reset iPhone option. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

4. After that, select Reset.

Reset in Transfer or Reset iPhone
Select Reset Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

5. Select Reset All Settings from the pop-up menu.

Reset All settings
Tap on Reset All Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

Even though such a reset wouldn’t erase your data, you should certainly back up your iPhone before resetting all settings.

Conclusion

In this article, we’ve walked you through some solutions for when your iPhone microphone is not working. It is worth noting that the microphone malfunction can be fixed with a simple phone restart in most cases. So don’t forget to try this solution first.

Last but not least, if the solutions mentioned so far don’t fix your microphone problem, feel free to contact Apple support or take your phone to the nearest apple center.

As a technophile, Farhad has spent the last decade getting hands-on experience with a variety of electronic devices, including smartphones, laptops, accessories, wearables, printers, and so on. When he isn't writing, you can bet he's devouring information on products making their market foray, demonstrating his unquenchable thirst for technology.

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