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These iPhone functions work with a dead battery
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Even if your iPhone dies, it can still do these 3 things

Your mobile phone is a lifeline to many daily activities. It is often the first thing we reach for in the mornings to check social media or pour over the latest news with a cup of coffee. It also keeps us in touch with family and friends.

So, when you forget to charge your iPhone overnight and it dies unceremoniously at lunchtime, you might feel lost or incomplete. Luckily, it doesn’t mean that all the functions are dead. There are a couple of handy features on your iPhone that still work.

Read on to see the functions that remain operational on your iPhone, even though its battery has died.

Here’s the backstory

No power on your iPhone means that you can’t receive calls, check emails, or scroll through social media. When you press the power button, the only graphic on the screen is the depleted battery with a red line.

It could be enough to send you into a mild panic, especially if you rely on your phone to access bank cards and keyless entry into your vehicle. Fortunately, that is one less thing you can worry about. Here are functions that remain active with a dead battery.

Find My feature

When an iPhone dies, it isn’t genuinely empty of battery power. Instead, a small percentage remains to power its wireless chips that can be used with the Find My feature. If you’ve ever lost your iPhone, you know that you can utilize the feature to track its location.

Few know that it works even when the device is switched off or the battery is dead. That’s because the chips never deactivate, even when the phone enters power reserve mode. So, you can still ping your iPhone to track or locate its position through a desktop computer or another device.

Express cards and car keys

With Apple’s Express Mode, you can use transit or payment cards, passes, student ID, car keys, and more without waking or unlocking your device or authenticating with Face ID, Touch ID, or your passcode.

Where it previously used Near-Field Communication (NFC), your iPhone now uses Bluetooth in Express Mode for access to the new Digital Car Key (DCK) system. So, even when you can’t phone, you can still get into your car.

If Express Mode isn’t turned on automatically for your pass or key, you can turn Express Mode on. Here’s how:

  • On your iPhone, open the Wallet app.
  • Tap the pass or key.
  • Tap the More button.
  • If you have the option, turn Express Mode on or off.
  • If you don’t see this option, tap Express Mode.
  • From the menu:
    • Tap a pass or key to turn Express Mode on.
    • Tap None to turn Express Mode off.
  • As needed, authenticate with Face ID, Touch ID, or your passcode.

Apple says, “You might be able to use Express Mode on your iPhone, even when your device needs to be charged. With compatible iPhone models, you might be able to use power reserve with transit or payment cards, some passes, student IDs, and car keys that have Express Mode turned on for up to five hours when your iPhone needs to be charged.”

Now for the bad news

It’s great that you can access some functions when your battery is dead, but hackers can exploit this, too. Researchers at Germany’s Technical University of Darmstadt found that malware can remain active even when the phone is off.

Researchers demonstrated that hackers could use wireless chip access to install malware on mobile phones. Since the technology is dependent on the internal hardware, an operating system update won’t remove the malware.

One of the best ways to stay protected from malware is to have trusted antivirus software on all of your devices. We recommend our sponsor, TotalAV.

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