iOS versions 11.0.3 and 11.1 are affected by a bug that replaces the letter "I" with "A[?]" in text messages.
The weird character combo appears as the primary entry in the iOS recommended predictive auto-correct text feature, which is turned on by default in the iOS Messages app.
This means that in most cases, the letter "I" gets replaced with "A[?]". Unless users noticed the error, they end up sending malformed messages.
Hoards of users spotted and reported the error last week and over the weekend, on Twitter and Apple user forums.
Does anyone know how to fix this iPhone glitch that changes the letter i into A + this question mark box? (I’ve already updated to iOS 11.1) pic.twitter.com/E6dmudOEFz— Crystal Leigh (@crystalleigh) November 2, 2017
Apple has acknowledged the bug and is recommending that users set up a text replacement rule for the letter "I" with the letter "I".
Users who followed Apple's advice confirmed it to work.
for everyone that’s phone is replacing the letter “i” with weird characters go into your text replacement settings & add this. It’ll fix it pic.twitter.com/2zXhA9cVb3— StarkGang (@missodessa) November 2, 2017
While these instructions may be over the top, users will likely have better success with disabling the predictive text auto-correct feature. The weird "I" to "A[?]" replacement does not take place in this situation.
Several Mac support forums are also recommending that users install custom keyboard apps, which use their own predictive text features.
Apple said it plans to address the bug in the next version of iOS.
Please let other users know in the comments field if you find new ways to prevent or correct the bug.