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Got a new grey iPhone SE for Christmas from the Verizon store. Seems to work fine except for one issue. When the phone is off (standby), any sudden motion turns the phone on, as if the home or power button were pressed.

Let me be clear: Nothing is in contact with the power button or home button when this happens. The phone isn't getting any calls or messages or other notifications.

There's a passcode, so nothing bad happens, but it's unsettling to open the pocketbook and see the phone screen all lit up.

Is this something deliberate? Can it be configured? Or is the phone just defective?

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  • The question already explains how it is different. 247159 says it wakes randomly, this one says it wakes on motion. 247159 says that it's an intended feature and asks how to disable it; I didn't know if it was intended or not.
    – Snowbody
    Dec 29, 2016 at 3:25

3 Answers 3

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The iOS 10 update brought the new Raise to wake function to the iPhone 6S, 7, and SE. It's completely normal but can be annoying at times. You can disable it from Settings -> Display & Brightness -> Raise to Wake.

Learn more about Raise to Wake and disabling it.

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It is completely fine! I have an iPhone SE and it does the same thing. It is normal, you can disable it in settings.

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It's deliberate, not any sort of malfunction, and you can disable it. Leaving it enabled drains your phone battery as it uses gyroscopic sensors.

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  • 2
    It's part of the Core Motion system which remains active regardless of settings. It's also used for step counting. The motion coprocessor (which processes motion data) is very efficient and the total energy used by the occasional screen wake-up should be negligible compared to normal use. Dec 28, 2016 at 12:33

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