17 Ways to Fix iOS 18 Eye Tracking Not Working on iPhone

Along with the Vehicle Motion Cues and the Music Haptics, Eye Tracking is the most notable iOS 18 Accessibility feature. What has given this new feature plenty of spotlight is the ability to let users control their iPhone or iPad with their eyes. Unfortunately, the iOS 18 Eye Tracking is not working as expected for some users. If you also can’t make it work on your device, now is the right time to resolve the issue and bring it back on track. Read on…

Fix iOS 18 Eye Tracking Not Working on iPhone and iPad 

What could be ailing the all-new Eye Tracking feature on your iOS or iPadOS device? To me, the biggest culprit of this Accessibility feature is the lack of a clear understanding of how it works. With the steep learning curve put in place, you must go through the grind and practice the art of following the dots meticulously in order to master the eye-tracking feature. Beyond these two core things, you shouldn’t take your eyes away from the prerequisites as they form the crust of the whole affair. Failing to check off a single thing will leave you perplexed.

1. Ensure That Your Device is on a Stable Surface

First and foremost, make sure your iPhone is placed on a stable surface while you are trying to control it using your eyes. Otherwise, the Eye-Tracking feature will fail to work. 

2. Make Sure You Have Placed Your Device at the Right Distance

Another important Eye-Tracking requirement that you must tick off is the required distance between your iPhone and your eyes. Bear in mind that your iPhone must be placed about one and a half feet away from your face.

3. Be Sure That the Front Camera Has a Clear View of Your Face 

Eye Tracking makes use of the front-facing camera to determine the spot where you are looking on the screen. Therefore, ensure that the selfie camera has a clear view of your face. Sit properly in a way that the front camera has an unobstructed view of your face. 

4. Clean Your Front Camera 

If the selfie camera is not clean or is blocked by dust or smudge, it may impact the performance of this Accessibility feature. Use a soft, lint-free cloth to clean the selfie camera, and try to use the eye-tracking feature to check if it solves the problem. 

5. Remove the Screen Guard 

Ensure that the screen guard is not interfering with the front-facing camera. If your screen protector or case is coming in the way of the front camera, it might affect the performance of the Eye-Tracking Accessibility feature.

6. Make Sure Your Room Has the Adequate Lighting 

It’s worth pointing out that the Eye-Tracking feature works only when there is adequate lighting. If you are in an environment with poor lighting, it won’t work – point blank!

7. Remove Face Mask 

Are you attempting to use the Eye-Tracking feature while wearing a face mask? If the answer is yes, remove the mask as it may be working as a roadblock. 

8. Ensure That You Have Set Up Face ID on Your Device

If Face ID is not enabled on your iPhone, it may have an adverse impact on the performance of the eye-tracking feature.

  • Launch the Settings app on your device -> Face ID & Passcode -> Now, follow the usual instructions to set up Face ID on your device.

9. Reset Face ID

Should the problem continue, reset your Face ID.

  • Open the Settings app on your device -> Face ID & Passcode -> Reset Face ID.
  • Now, set up Face ID from scratch and check if you have gotten the better of the problem.
Reset Face ID

10. Right Way to Use Eye-Tracking 

  •   When the Eye Tracking feature is in action, you need to carefully follow a series of dots onscreen.
  •   For accurate and enhanced Eye Tracking calibration, make sure to look at each dot and follow along with precision.
  • Once you have successfully calibrated the feature, the Dwell Control will activate. With the Dwell Control feature enabled, holding the cursor still for a specified amount of time lets you perform the desired dwell action.
  • In order to interact and control your iPhone, you must focus on a control for the dwell duration. Subsequently, the Dwell Control will tap that particular item.
Set up and use Eye tracking on iPhone
  • You will have access to a bunch of actions such as
    home, lock, control center, scrolling, and more in the AssistiveTouch menu.
  • For a more personalized experience, I would suggest you ideally customize the Dwell Control feature on your device.
  • Head into the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad -> Accessibility -> Touch -> AssistiveTouch -> Scroll down to find Dwell Control and then turn it on. After that, customize all the key components like fallback action, movement tolerance, hot corners, and extended predictions.

11. Make Use of the “Snap to Item” Feature 

With the “Snap to Item” feature enabled, “Eye Tracking” automatically moves the pointer to the nearby items which helps make navigation a smooth sailing affair.

  • Dive into the Settings app on your iPhone/iPad -> Accessibility -> Eye Tracking -> Turn on the toggle for Snap to Item.

12. Use the Eye Tracking Auto-Hide Feature With Precision

Eye Tracking comes with an auto-hide functionality that allows you to automatically hide the cursor. Based on your convenience, you can adjust the auto-hide duration. Additionally, there is also a neat way to reduce the visibility of the pointer during auto-hide.

Initially, I would suggest you disable the auto-hide functionality as it may bring a ton of confusion. Once you have gotten a good hold of the feature, then you can experiment with it.

13. Disable/Enable Eye Tracking 

Should the “Eye-Tracking” feature be embroiled in a minor software glitch, you can bring it into action by just turning it off and on.

  • Navigate to the Settings app on your iPhone/iPad -> Accessibility -> Under the Physical and Motor section, select Eye Tracking and turn it off 
  • Now, restart your device and turn on Eye Tracking. 
Set up Eye tracking in iOS 18

14. Is Your Eye-Tracking Pointer Less Responsive?

Note that if you have increased the Eye Tracking pointer responsiveness above the normal level, it could be the prime reason why the pointer has become less responsive.

  • Go to the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad -> Accessibility -> Eye Tracking.
  • Now, use the slider to perfectly adjust the smoothing. For best result, keep it at around 50%.

15. Force Reset Your iPhone

As you may have already guessed, I’m not going to miss out on an incredibly useful troubleshooter “Force Reset” that has enabled me to crush many frustrating iOS issues in a jiffy. If you are not sure how the force reset/hard reset is done, check out this quick hands-on guide.

Hard reset iPhone

16. Update Software 

If the Eye-Tracking feature continues to misbehave on your iPhone, go for the software update as there is a high chance that a hidden bug could be affecting this all-new Accessibility feature. 

  • On your iPhone or iPad, launch the Settings app -> General -> Software Update.
  • Now, go through the usual way to download and install the latest iOS/iPadOS update. 
Update Software in iOS 18

17. Factory Reset Your iPhone or iPad

Haven’t been able to resolve the eye-tracking feature yet? No worries! Now, we will go for the factory solution as it has clicked for a handful of users. 

For folks who are unaware of how the factory reset works, it gets rid of all the custom settings including your Home Screen/Lock Screen designs, and Wi-Fi passwords. Though it makes sure all your files, photos, videos, and notes stay as secure as ever.

Bear in mind that if you have the Stolen Device protection enabled on your iPhone, you may have to wait for an hour before being allowed to reset all settings. 

  • On your iPhone or iPad, head into the Settings app -> General -> Transfer or Reset iPhone/iPad -> Reset -> Reset All Settings. 
Reset All Settings

Wrapping up…

There you have it! Hopefully, your eye tracking has come back on track and so has your lost smile. Before you go on to track all the cool iOS 18 features and make them your very own, make sure to share your invaluable feedback.

Read more: 12 Ways to Fix iPhone Contacts Disappeared After iOS 18 Update

Posted by
Rajesh Mishra

Editor-in-Chief: Rajesh Mishra (Your beloved “R.K” 360 Reader Voice) is a Shakespearean poet at heart who turned a tech nerd while having a secret rendezvous with iPhone 4. When that rendezvous turned obsession, he let go of his hard-core political journalism in favour of the lifelong love-affair with technology. In a career spanning one and a half decades, Mr. Mishra has crafted over 8K articles and around 2K YouTube videos. He is probably the only journalist alive with this unique achievement. When he is not at his desk, you may find him either engrossed in a Deathmatch or chasing Wordsworth!

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