iOS 9: 4 Problems With Apple’s New OS (and How to Fix Them)
Apple has just released iOS 9, its latest version of the operating system for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. While iOS 9 brings a number of important upgrades and new features to iOS devices, users are already reporting some (mostly minor) bugs with the release. Read on to find out about the problems you might encounter with iOS 9, and learn how to fix them.
1. Issues updating to iOS 9
Zac Hall repots for 9to5Mac that users have reported issues with updating to the new operating system. An error message, reading “Software Updated Failed: An error occurred downloading iOS 9,” is impacting a number of users, including developers running the iOS 9 GM seed released last week. Other users, upon navigating through the Settings app with the intention of updating to iOS 9, are reporting that they’re still seeing the previous iOS 8.4.1 version, and are unable to attempt to update just yet.
Hall reports that on his update to iOS 9, simply rebooting his iPhone 6 and then checking Software Update in the Settings app again resolved the issue. For my own update — admittedly on an iPhone 4s that’s not, by any stretch of the imagination, an ideal device for running the new operating system — rebooting the phone and restarting the update didn’t succeed, but temporarily turning off Auto-Lock while downloading and installing the update worked.
As 9to5Mac points out, the best way to troubleshoot the problem is likely to be patient and let Apple’s servers catch up. In the meantime, a few users have reported success in forgoing the over-the-air update and using iTunes, instead.
2. Battery life disappointments
Rene Ritchie reports for iMore that while iOS 9 is optimized to offer better battery life on the Phone, iPad, and iPod Touch, some users are finding that they aren’t getting the battery life that they used to on their devices. Luckily, there are a few easy ways to identify the problem and troubleshoot any battery issues you might be experiencing with iOS 9.
If you’ve just updated, give your device a few hours, even a day or so, to completely finish the updating process before you judge iOS 9’s impact on battery life. iOS updates and restores can drain battery power by moving files, updating libraries, and reindexing content. Plus, if you had an assortment of apps to update, too, the device can be demanding a lot from its WiFi or cellular connection. For some users, the issues might be resolved if you let the dust settle after the update process is complete.
If your battery still feels like it isn’t lasting as long as it used to, it’s important to objectively evaluate how the battery is doing when you aren’t draining it by testing out the operating system’s new features. Ritchie advises noting how much battery life you have left, then putting your device down for 10 to 20 minutes. If there isn’t a big change, your battery life will likely return to normal levels when your usage does.
If your device’s battery continued to drain while in standby, reboot it by holding the Sleep button and the Home button simultaneously. Keep them pressed until you see the logo, then let go. Try the standby test again to see if battery usage has returned to normal. If it hasn’t, you should rule out software problems by checking your battery usage, checking your cell signal, or power-cycling your device.
Sometimes, it may be necessary to restore your device as new, or even go to the Apple Store to service or replace your device. And if you’ve ruled everything else out, and your device still isn’t getting the battery life you need, you can opt to turn off Location Services, Background App Refresh, push notifications, or even put your device into the new Low Power Mode.
3. Unpleasant visuals (and other unwelcome changes)
iOS 9 brings not only an assortment of new features and functions, but also ushers in a variety of different visual effects we haven’t yet seen in the mobile operating system. Serenity Caldwell reports for iMore that for some users, a few of those visuals are proving less than pleasant. Luckily, there are easy ways to tweak just about every one of them to make the operating system more to your liking.
If you struggle to read the operating system’s new typeface, you can make the text bigger and bolder by opening the Settings app, navigating to General, and then choosing Accessibility. Tap Larger Text, then Larger Accessibility Sizes to access a slider and choose your ideal size. If you want bolder, not bigger, text, tap the toggle next to Bold Text. If you’re confused by iOS 9’s text-only buttons, you can tell the operating system to go back to the more familiar button shapes. Open the Settings app, tap General, then open the Accessibility menu and toggle Button Shapes on. You can add texture to the toggles, also in the Accessibility menu, by turning on the On/Off Labels toggle.
You can use the Increase Contrast option in Accessibility to darken the link button colors or to dim whites and bright colors. If it’s iOS 9’s use of transparent backgrounds that bothers you, flatten the colors by flipping the Reduce Transparency toggle. From various settings in the Accessibility menu, you can turn off parallax and app zooms, or turn off the new lowercase keyboard.
If it’s iOS 9’s new touch gestures that are annoying you, you can also use the Accessibility menu to turn off Reachability or switch off Shake to Undo, or use the Touch ID menu to turn off the option to trigger Apple Pay by double-pressing the Home button on the lock screen. Use the Keyboard menu to turn off the split keyboard, disable the iPad’s new Slide Over and Split View features from the Multitasking menu, where you can also keep Picture in Picture from activating automatically or turn off multitasking gestures altogether.
From the appropriate menus in the Settings app, you can also turn off lock sounds and keyboard clicks, change the volume of Maps navigation, turn of audible feedback from Siri, turn off search suggestions and lock screen suggestions, or stop calls from automatically going to Bluetooth.
4. Miscellaneous bugs
As Rajesh Pandey reports for iPhone Hacks, there are numerous reports of minor bugs throughout iOS 9 — though not nearly as many as there were in iOS 8. Some users have complained that the Messages app is slow to use, and missing animations. Others note that bringing up the Control Center isn’t as smooth as it should be, and switching to Incognito mode in Safari can cause it to freeze on some devices.
Additionally, the Settings app can sometimes open with half of the list already scrolled down, and rotating the keyboard from portrait to landscape is slow and leads to a significant drop in frame rate. The calendar widget has refused to update for some users, and won’t show all of the events that are on your calendar.
These bugs are minor, and often don’t show up consistently for the users who do experience them. Unfortunately, there’s not much recourse but to take note of the idiosyncrasies and move on — while being thankful that the bugs aren’t anything major.