Apple HomeKit invitation ‘spinning wheel’ issue still lingering
It won’t be wrong to say that every new product/software/platform has some bugs or issues associated with it. While most of the times companies take care of these problems in timely manner, there are times when issues linger on for months and years.
Case in point: an Apple HomeKit related problem which users have been reporting for at-least a couple of years now. Basically, complainants say when they send a HomeKit invitation to someone their circle, the notification pops up, but the receiving member only sees a spinning wheel in the My Home section of their Home app.
To sender, however, it appears the invitation has been successfully accepted. Take a look at the screenshot below (notice the spinning when on the device on left).
Here’s how an affected user explains the problem:
I’ve got homekit working on my devices. I invited my wife – the notification pops up, but when we go into the home app, and homes, what’s there is “My Home (Guest)” with a spinning wheel. On her iPad, it has the correct home name, on her iPhone is has the default name – both as Guest and both with the spinning wheel.
I have tried:
1) Canceling the invitation
2) delete the spinning home
3) Reset her icloud keychain
4) hard device reset
5) restore the device from backup (Apple’s typical default troubleshooting step).
I have had a case open with Apple for almost a year now and this is no closer to resolution than the day I opened it
Judging from threads on the official Apple forum (1,2,3,4…I am sure there will be more), the problem has been around since 2016 and is still being actively reported. Some users have speculated it has something to do with users sharing a common Apple ID (either currently or anytime in the past).
I believe the root cause is the Apple ID’s in question were at one point shared between devices… before the Family Sharing plan. And now for some reason, Apple believes the Apple ID’s are the same. There are numerous threads in the Apple discussion forums which highlight this, yet Apple does not seem to want to resolve the issue
Can’t Invite my wife but does work for my sons device. Only thing I can think of is she used to use my Apple ID but switched to her own without setting up her iPad/iPhone from scratch
Some complainants specifically confirmed they are facing the problem on iOS 12 as well.
I’m having a similar problem trying to send my gf an invite keeps saying invite failed I have her email that she uses for iCloud still failed.. on same wifi network and all can’t find an answer…. iOS12 on Both iPhones…
This prompted me to check for iOS 12 release notes, and when I did, I found this is a known issue, just that Apple has described it in the following way:
Inviting iOS 11 users who have multiple email addresses associated with their Apple ID to a home might not succeed
And here’s the workaround the company has suggested:
Workaround: Send the invitation to a different email address or phone number associated with the Apple ID of the iOS 11 user
I came across many reports in Apple forum where users tried a similar workaround and reported success.
It’s 100% a problem with AppleID’s aliases I believe if you have any kind of alias or personal email as your AppleID it bombs out. I created a new Apple ID for both myself and my partner, no alias, just standard @icloud.com addresses. Worked perfectly. As soon as I go back to my normal AppleID and try to invite I’m back to a spinning wheel
Yes it is an alias issue. My AppleID uses my gmail email address, as does my wife’s AppleID. I could not get her phone to accept the invite when I sent it to her AppleID ending in Gmail.com. After I cancelled the invite and looked up her icloud.com alias on her phone, I sent the invite to that and it took about 10 seconds after I tapped accept on her phone and everything worked just fine
So there you go, it’s an officially acknowledged problem – the only difference being Apple says this behavior shows up when the recipient device is on iOS 11, while we’re seeing reports from iOS 12 users as well.
Although it’s sad the problem has been lingering for so long, what’s good is that there’s a workaround that has fixed the issue for many users. We suggest you try out this workaround, and let us know your experience in comments below. Rest assured, we’ll let you know when Apple officially fixes this problem.
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