Enabling and Disabling FaceTime

When I first started using my iPhone 4 yesterday in its default factory-fresh state, FaceTime worked just fine. But then after restoring from a backup of my old iPhone 3GS, FaceTime was no longer available. No FaceTime button during phone calls, no FaceTime button in my Contacts listings.

The problem: after restoring from that backup, FaceTime was disabled. After toggling it back on in Settings → Phone, FaceTime was back to working as expected.

Theory on the bug: my iPhone 3GS had already been updated to iOS 4.0, which perhaps meant the preference setting for this toggle was turned off because that phone isn’t FaceTime-capable. I’ll bet if I had restored from a backup of a device still on iOS 3, the FaceTime setting would have stayed at the default value of “On”. Update: Based on comments from several readers, that’s not it — some have restored from a 4.0 backup and FaceTime was on by default, and others have restored from a 3.1.3 backup and had it off by default. Best guess now: it depends whether you restore from backup the very first time you connect the phone to iTunes. If you do, FaceTime is on by default; if not, it’s off. (I didn’t restore at first, because I wanted to use it right away.)

Friday, 25 June 2010