How to fix problems with iOS 11 on your iPhone or iPad

Posted:
in iOS
For some, iOS 11 has proven to be problematic -- but not for everyone, and not on every device. Here are a few things to try to (hopefully) clean up some issues before Apple issues a fix in software.




While some of these steps may seem obvious, when a device you rely on for whatever the reason is not functioning well, you might skip a step. Here, in order of least to most intrusive, are some troubleshooting steps to try to clear up iOS 11 issues.

Wait

After an iOS update, the hardware can take from hours to days with background tasks and reindexing. This can start even with "sub-point" updates, like the recent updates culminating in iOS.

If it's only been a few days since your last update -- be patient. It might clear up on its own.

Background App Refresh settings

After the iOS 11 update, some applications have reset their background update status. Whether or not this was a function of the OS update, or the onslaught of app updates before and after is irrelevant -- but apps like Facebook can wreak havoc on battery life.

Inside Settings, tap General and scroll down about halfway. Tap Background App Refresh.




In our case as seen here, nearly everything had seen an iOS 11 update -- and everything was turned back on. Toggle off apps that you're fine with waiting for a few seconds when you load for content updates.

Instant messaging services should be left alone, as they don't function well when they can't update in the background.

Restart

If you're a long-time Mac user, you might remember the need for frequent reboots in pre-OS X Apple operating systems. In the last decade, Apple has made remarkable steps in overall system stability, but sometimes, things just need to be flushed out.

Tap the Settings app. Tap the General settings menu, and scroll down to Shut Down.Slide to power off.


Reset all settings

To be honest, we're not sure why this one works sometimes -- but it reportedly does. Possibly, some vestigial setting has remained, and this purges it.

Tap the Settings app. Tap the General settings menu, and scroll all the way down to Reset All Settings. Enter your passcode to confirm.




As a side effect, you'll have to re-enter stored passwords, and other account information. Plus, any preferences you may have set in Accessibility or other parameters have been reset to default.

Start fresh with a new install of the operating system

This is the most dramatic. If there is something left over from a previous install causing a problem somehow -- this will clear it out.

There is a last resort for users to try -- Recovery Mode and a reinstall of iOS 11.

First, to simplify the restore, sign out of iCloud. Tap Settings, then tap your name. Scroll down and tap Sign Out. The iPhone will demand your Apple ID password -- enter it, and hit Turn Off.




Then, plug the device into a computer, and launch iTunes.

On devices with a mechanical home button, press the Sleep/Wake button and the Home button at the same time past the Apple logo, until you get the recovery mode screen.




On devices with a solid state Home button like the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8, press the Sleep/Wake button and the volume down button, again past the Apple logo, until you get the recovery mode screen.

Following the iTunes connection, hit Restore.




Following the restoration process which will install a new copy of iOS, the device will be able to be set up and used either as a new device, or reinstated from a backup -- we recommend the former, if you've made it all the way to the fourth option. However, since Apple removed easy app reinstallation through iTunes, there may be a lengthy download period where your apps are not available.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 25
    Please stop spreading the FUD about Background App Refresh. iOS does a very good job of deferring background requests until the radios are already on (ie, the user has woken up the phone and is connected to the internet). 


  • Reply 2 of 25
    fmalloyfmalloy Posts: 105member
    The fact that an article like this needs to be written speaks volumes.about Apple these days. So we have a shiny new object of desire that - gasp - unlocks with your face and has - gasp - no home button...but you're still presented with the same tired old grid of icons.

    Oh well, at least there are also exciting new swipe gestures that will keep things interesting. But we need a shortcut gesture to "erase and restore from backup", apparently.
    muthuk_vanalingamfreshmaker
  • Reply 3 of 25
    supersalo said:
    Please stop spreading the FUD about Background App Refresh. iOS does a very good job of deferring background requests until the radios are already on (ie, the user has woken up the phone and is connected to the internet). 


    What do you mean? Until the radios are on? And you mean background updates only occur when phone is unlocked and connected to internet? It’s always connected to internet, but you mean lockes phones don’t background update?
  • Reply 4 of 25
    bb-15bb-15 Posts: 268member
    Here is what I do for my family's several older iOS devices and iOS 11. 
    * I wait before upgrading. I've done this for years when a new version of iOS is released. 
    - Then I check out websites for the new iOS version's problems. 
    When these issues are resolved by Apple, I upgrade. 

    - Also, with an older device that's having trouble on iOS 11, consider going back to iOS 10, if that's an option.  
    - Of course this doesn't apply to new iOS devices like the iPhone 8 which have to run iOS 11. 

    freshmaker
  • Reply 5 of 25
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,483member

    Wait

    After an iOS update, the hardware can take from hours to days with background tasks and reindexing. This can start even with "sub-point" updates, like the recent updates culminating in iOS.

    If it's only been a few days since your last update -- be patient. It might clear up on its own.

    Crikey, this in spades on watchOS. One of the updates to my Apple Watch reduced the battery life to like 2-3 hours. I tracked it to the workout app. If I didn't launch or use the workout app, the battery life doubled to like 6-8 hours. About 3 weeks later...it all resolved. My watch now easily goes 16 hours independent of use of any apps. 

    Go. Figure.
    iqatedo
  • Reply 6 of 25
    What is the fundamental difference between Generals->Reset->Erase all Content and Settings and the fresh restore of the OS mentioned above? Last times, I did an Erase all Content and Settings and it seems to work as a fresh restore of the OS too.
  • Reply 7 of 25
    I am still having issues where the lock screen clock disappears at random times. A reboot of the phone restores it but a few hours or a few days later, it disappears again...no clock, no notifications. Submitted a report/suggestion to Apple. Just wonder how many others experience this. Also, not sure if buggy or not, but sometimes when the screen is on after unlocking, it sharply adjusts its light...not a gradual dim, but an abrupt jerk of light to dimmer. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ 
  • Reply 8 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,871administrator
    supersalo said:
    Please stop spreading the FUD about Background App Refresh. iOS does a very good job of deferring background requests until the radios are already on (ie, the user has woken up the phone and is connected to the internet). 


    You're right - iOS does a pretty good job of deferring background requests, but that is not the point of the tip. The wi-fi radio consumes more power actively moving data than it does idle. Apps like FaceBook not only will keep the modem chip on full-bore while it is getting the background data, but consume as much power as it possibly can while doing so.

    And, it will do so after you've locked the phone for a time, consuming the battery unnecessarily if FaceBook isn't the reason you use the phone.

    Plus, like I said in the article, either iOS 11 turned them all back on, or the updates to the app itself did in defiance of previous settings.
    tdknoxrandominternetpersonGG1fastasleeplolliverjahbladejony0
  • Reply 9 of 25

    I'm my experience, with my iPhone 6s, I shouldn't have upgraded to iOS 11, period.  Sure there are small number of UI improvements and app improvements, but that doesn't make up for the loss of a large number of legacy app nor the sluggish/laggy experience now.  I know there is nothing I can do about the former--except wait and hope some of those apps are updated, but I expect most won't be.  Is my experience of having apps open more slowly and a less responsive UI typical?  Before upgrading I don't remember ever having a delay when tapping on an icon or hitting the home button.  Now there is often a delay of a fraction of a second or longer, which means that sometimes I've pressed the button again before the phone reacts the first (and second click/tap).  It's annoying and inelegant.  If there were a way for me to revert back to iOS 10, I would do so immediately.  I expect it works beautifully on new hardware with the latest CPU/GPU, but it rather sucks on my 2 year old phone.

    muthuk_vanalingampropod
  • Reply 10 of 25
    supersalo said:
    Please stop spreading the FUD about Background App Refresh. iOS does a very good job of deferring background requests until the radios are already on (ie, the user has woken up the phone and is connected to the internet). 


    You're right - iOS does a pretty good job of deferring background requests, but that is not the point of the tip. The wi-fi radio consumes more power actively moving data than it does idle. Apps like FaceBook not only will keep the modem chip on full-bore while it is getting the background data, but consume as much power as it possibly can while doing so.

    And, it will do so after you've locked the phone for a time, consuming the battery unnecessarily if FaceBook isn't the reason you use the phone.

    Plus, like I said in the article, either iOS 11 turned them all back on, or the updates to the app itself did in defiance of previous settings.
    It's that last part that I find a little disquieting. A setting like that should not be able to revert with an update (particularly not with an app update), and without a consultation with the user. Are there other settings in there somewhere that have the ability to be changed without user input? That sort of thing is very un-Apple, if you ask me.
  • Reply 11 of 25

    I'm my experience, with my iPhone 6s, I shouldn't have upgraded to iOS 11, period.  Sure there are small number of UI improvements and app improvements, but that doesn't make up for the loss of a large number of legacy app nor the sluggish/laggy experience now.  I know there is nothing I can do about the former--except wait and hope some of those apps are updated, but I expect most won't be.  Is my experience of having apps open more slowly and a less responsive UI typical?  Before upgrading I don't remember ever having a delay when tapping on an icon or hitting the home button.  Now there is often a delay of a fraction of a second or longer, which means that sometimes I've pressed the button again before the phone reacts the first (and second click/tap).  It's annoying and inelegant.  If there were a way for me to revert back to iOS 10, I would do so immediately.  I expect it works beautifully on new hardware with the latest CPU/GPU, but it rather sucks on my 2 year old phone.

    Can you downgrade back to 10.3.3 at all? I did and am waiting this out for at least 11.1.3 or later

    https://ipsw.me/#!/download ;  
  • Reply 12 of 25
    fmalloy said:
    The fact that an article like this needs to be written speaks volumes.about Apple these days. So we have a shiny new object of desire that - gasp - unlocks with your face and has - gasp - no home button...but you're still presented with the same tired old grid of icons.
    Nonsense. First of all this list amounts to a "reboot or re-install" procedure, which is about all you can do on any platform. Further none of the many devices in my household have any issues whatsoever (iPhone 6S, iPhone 7, iPad Air 2, iPad Mini 3, iPad Pro 10.5). There is an amplification of the techie echo chamber with sites like these. That being said, I'm sure there are edge cases which can trigger bugs, as has always been the case and will always be the case. 

    As for the "tired" grid of icons -- it's an OS interface, not a video game. It is not designed to keep you amused when you are bored. Apps do that. This is the platform. Do you  complain about Mac or Windows being a "tired" desktop interface of icons and folders? Why not? Oh yeah because you intrinsically realize the computer is just a tool. As is the iPhone.
    edited October 2017 king editor the gratefastasleeplolliverjahbladefarmboy
  • Reply 13 of 25
    What I ran into with a 6 was that iTunes would simply not, under an circumstance, restore / update when issues with iOS 11 cropped up. The only way that the Apple Store and I could figure out how to wipe the phone so that it could be set up as a new device was to go into iCloud and under Find iPhone use the Erase iPhone function. That worked perfectly.
  • Reply 14 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,871administrator
    hypoluxa said:

    I'm my experience, with my iPhone 6s, I shouldn't have upgraded to iOS 11, period.  Sure there are small number of UI improvements and app improvements, but that doesn't make up for the loss of a large number of legacy app nor the sluggish/laggy experience now.  I know there is nothing I can do about the former--except wait and hope some of those apps are updated, but I expect most won't be.  Is my experience of having apps open more slowly and a less responsive UI typical?  Before upgrading I don't remember ever having a delay when tapping on an icon or hitting the home button.  Now there is often a delay of a fraction of a second or longer, which means that sometimes I've pressed the button again before the phone reacts the first (and second click/tap).  It's annoying and inelegant.  If there were a way for me to revert back to iOS 10, I would do so immediately.  I expect it works beautifully on new hardware with the latest CPU/GPU, but it rather sucks on my 2 year old phone.

    Can you downgrade back to 10.3.3 at all? I did and am waiting this out for at least 11.1.3 or later

    https://ipsw.me/#!/download ;  
    10.3.3 is no longer signed by Apple, and won't install through iTunes.
  • Reply 15 of 25
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 3,161member
    supersalo said:
    Please stop spreading the FUD about Background App Refresh. iOS does a very good job of deferring background requests until the radios are already on (ie, the user has woken up the phone and is connected to the internet). 


    Have you used the Facebook app with BAR turned on? It’s a huge battery drainer, unless they’ve made major changes recently. 

    And just the other day, I tried out a new audio app on my iPad, switched to another app, closed the Smart Cover. Came back later in the day to a dead iPad, which never happens. It had drained 90% of the battery. In the background. Doing nothing. 

    iOS may do a good job, but that doesn’t mean 3rd party apps do. 
    edited October 2017 lolliver
  • Reply 16 of 25
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 3,161member
    fmalloy said:
    The fact that an article like this needs to be written speaks volumes.about Apple these days. So we have a shiny new object of desire that - gasp - unlocks with your face and has - gasp - no home button...but you're still presented with the same tired old grid of icons.
    Spend a lot of time hanging out in your home screen, do ya?
    lolliver
  • Reply 17 of 25
    Although recommendations are against, closing apps appears to me as releasing some memory in iOS 11. I checked this with an iPad Mini 2 in iOS 11 and found some improved responsiveness. This is an A7 device with 1 GB of RAM.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 18 of 25
    eightzero said:

    Wait

    After an iOS update, the hardware can take from hours to days with background tasks and reindexing. This can start even with "sub-point" updates, like the recent updates culminating in iOS.

    If it's only been a few days since your last update -- be patient. It might clear up on its own.

    Crikey, this in spades on watchOS. One of the updates to my Apple Watch reduced the battery life to like 2-3 hours. I tracked it to the workout app. If I didn't launch or use the workout app, the battery life doubled to like 6-8 hours. About 3 weeks later...it all resolved. My watch now easily goes 16 hours independent of use of any apps. 

    Go. Figure.
    Workout app makes the heart rate sensor work in full accuracy, i.e with green light. It is normal that it consumes battery.
  • Reply 19 of 25
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 1,648member
    supersalo said:
    Please stop spreading the FUD about Background App Refresh. iOS does a very good job of deferring background requests until the radios are already on (ie, the user has woken up the phone and is connected to the internet). 


    Have you used the Facebook app with BAR turned on? It’s a huge battery drainer, unless they’ve made major changes recently. 

    And just the other day, I tried out a new audio app on my iPad, switched to another app, closed the Smart Cover. Came back later in the day to a dead iPad, which never happens. It had drained 90% of the battery. In the background. Doing nothing. 

    iOS may do a good job, but that doesn’t mean 3rd party apps do. 
    Well, that's your fault for installing the Facepalm app - Just say no! ;)

    I updated my 6s to 11.0.3 a week ago and haven't noticed any major issues. It might consume battery a bit quicker, but it's really hard to tell. Does anyone know how to turn off the 'feature' that opens the home screen as soon the home button recognizes your fingerprint, even if you don't press the button? I find it very annoying!
    edited October 2017
  • Reply 20 of 25
    MplsP said:
    supersalo said:
    Please stop spreading the FUD about Background App Refresh. iOS does a very good job of deferring background requests until the radios are already on (ie, the user has woken up the phone and is connected to the internet). 


    Have you used the Facebook app with BAR turned on? It’s a huge battery drainer, unless they’ve made major changes recently. 

    And just the other day, I tried out a new audio app on my iPad, switched to another app, closed the Smart Cover. Came back later in the day to a dead iPad, which never happens. It had drained 90% of the battery. In the background. Doing nothing. 

    iOS may do a good job, but that doesn’t mean 3rd party apps do. 
    Well, that's your fault for installing the Facepalm app - Just say no! ;)

    I updated my 6s to 11.0.3 a week ago and haven't noticed any major issues. It might consume battery a bit quicker, but it's really hard to tell. Does anyone know how to turn off the 'feature' that opens the home screen as soon the home button recognizes your fingerprint, even if you don't press the button? I find it very annoying!
    Settings / General / Accessibility / Home Button
    lolliver
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