August 13, 2020

Facebook bug causing Spotify, Tinder and Pinterest apps to crash

July 10, 2020

The iPhone apps for Spotify, Tinder and Pinterest are crashing for users around the world, apparently due to a Facebook bug.

The core issue is in Facebook's software developer kit (SDK) for iOS which embeds Facebook functionality within other apps, for instance allowing people to log in to Tinder using their Facebook accounts.

Launching the apps in airplane mode with WiFi off appears to let the apps boot without crashing, although as soon as airplane mode is turned off the apps will again crash.

The apps are crashing because when they launch they are trying to reach Facebook's servers to authenticate any logins, even if the user isn't logging in with their Facebook account.

This call isn't made when iPhones are in airplane mode, and so the apps continue working - although few of them have any functionality without internet access.

The underlying services of these apps are still functioning and so users can play Spotify music by visiting its website using a web browser rather than the app.

Uninstalling and reinstalling the apps won't fix the issue, companies are warning.

When app developers embed Facebook's SDK in their apps they can access the company's business intelligence features, tracking and measuring data on how people are using their apps.

It is the second time this year that a bug in Facebook's SDK has impacted other apps, causing them to crash when launched, after a similar incident in May.

"We are aware and investigating an increase in errors on the iOS SDK which is causing some apps to crash," Facebook said in a post on its developers forum.

In a statement sent to Sky News, a spokesperson repeated: "We're aware that some applications are currently affected by an issue in our Facebook iOS SDK.

"We're working to get things back to normal as quickly as possible," they added.

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