Your beautiful, sleek iPhone 6 lies abandoned in a box on your desk. Its smooth screen is cold and black. You receive a text on the second-hand HTC smartphone your Android-using friend lent you.
“Plug in your phone,” the text reads, before linking to this article. “Apple fixed Error 53.”
Earlier this week, as Apple battled the FBI, thousands of phones lay idle, unwitting victims of Error 53, a so-called “security feature” that shut down phones operating iOS 9 that had been repaired by a third-party technician.
The problem affected so many people that a Seattle lawyer brought a class-action lawsuit against the company, which had done nothing to make customers aware of the fact that using a third-party repair service to fix their phone would instead silence it forever.
But on Thursday, Apple quietly released an update to its software and a list of instructions telling users how to resurrect their Error 53’d phones.
“Error 53 appears when a device fails a security test. This test was designed to check whether Touch ID works properly before the device leaves the factory, and wasn’t intended to affect customers,” the support post reads, and then lists a series of steps to follow. At the end of them, you can rejoin the masses, revel in the small blue bubbles of successfully sent iMessages, have undisturbed sex and, if all goes well, refresh the kibble bowl in your Neko Atsume backyard.
You can click here for the full instructions on how to restore your iPhone.