iOS 7.1 Update: Problems, Fixes, Performance

Yesterday, Apple rolled out the highly anticipated iOS 7.1 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, an update that brings new features, enhancements and fixes to iOS 7 users. Now that the smoke has settled a little bit, we want to take a close look at the new update for iPhone and iPad including a peek at initial iOS 7.1 problems, fixes and performance.

iOS 7.1 was first introduced all the way back in November of last year. The update emerged shortly after the arrival of iOS 7.0.4 and instead of landing for the public, it landed in Apple’s beta program for developers. For four months, Apple and its partners tinkered with the iOS 7.1 update ahead of its public release.

Slowly, but surely, the beta process gave iPhone and iPad owners a pretty good idea about what to expect from Apple’s first big update to iOS 7, an update that will likely serve as the company’s bridge to iOS 8. And it was those changes, some of them major, that had iPhone and iPad owners excited for an iOS 7.1 release.

Apple never announces release dates for incremental updates so users were probably blindsided yesterday when Apple delivered iOS 7.1 for the iPhone and iPad.

The iOS 7.1 is a massive update for the iPhone and iPad, checking in at well over 200MB. There is, of course, a reason for its size. As expected, the iOS 7.1 update delivers the big changes we saw in the beta process. Apple has made some tweaks to the iOS 7 UI, added some performance enhancements and deliver new features including the highly anticipated CarPlay feature that the company originally called iOS in the Car.

It has been twenty four hours since Apple pushed out iOS 7.1 to the iPhone and iPad and as we mentioned, the smoke is starting to settle with details about the update becoming clear.

We’re seeing new details emerge regarding iOS 7.1′s features, its problems, and its performance and here, we take a look at all of those. Here is  everything we know about the iOS 7.1 update for iPhone and iPad thus far.

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iOS 7.1 Performance

ios-7.1-release

In the iOS 7.1 change log, Apple noted that the update would bring performance enhancements to the iPhone 4 in particular. However, as we’ve reported, the iOS 7.1 seems to have brought performance changes to other devices as well.

From the looks of things, iOS 7.1 is a godsend for many iPhone 4 owners. Some users have taken to Reddit to praise the iOS 7.1 update with users boasting about the increase in overall speed. For many, iOS 7 was extremely sluggish and it looks like iOS 7.1 has delivered improvements.

ArsTechnica, in a full review, claims that the iOS 7.1 update is probably going to be as good as it gets for iPhone 4 users. As they, and other iPhone 4 owners have learned, the update isn’t perfect (battery life problems are apparently still problems) but it appears to be a major improvement over iOS 7.

Of course, from our point of view, these performance enhancements aren’t limited to the iPhone 4. As I noted in my impressions of the iOS 7.1 update for iPad Air and iPhone 5, the overall speed of the software is much improved over iOS 7. The performance is literally night and day on the iPhone 5.

My colleague Josh Smith took a look at iOS 7.1 on the iPad 3 and he claims that he’s seen a remarkable improvement over iOS 7. iOS 7 on the iPad 3 was extremely sluggish and Apple’s tweaks and changes, particularly to animations, seem to have done wonders here as well.

Overall, we’ve been hearing good things from iPhone and iPad owners though there are those who are dealing with iOS 7.1 problems after installing the software.

iOS 7.1 Problems & Fixes

iOS 7 jailbreak app Activator

iOS updates always fix problems but they almost always deliver new problems as well. Such is the case with the iOS 7.1 update. It has been about 24 hours and already, we’re hearing complaints about Apple’s new software.

One of the first problems that we ourselves ran into was an issue with storage space. Specifically, I was unable to install the update Over-the-Air on my iPad Air because I didn’t have enough free space. Gotta Be Mobile publisher Xavier Lanier and others think it’s a big reason why Apple should ditch 16GB iPhones and iPads.

Of course, there is a simple fix for that issue. iPhone and iPad owners who are out of space only need to plug in to a computer and install the iOS 7.1 update through iTunes.

iOS 7.1 problems go beyond installation issues though. iPhone 4 owners are complaining about bad battery life. We’re seeing complaints about broken Wi-Fi inside iOS 7.1. iPhone and iPad owners are complaining about broken Bluetooth. We’ve also seen users relay problems with the keyboard after installing iOS 7.1. These are just the tip of the iceberg. Apple’s discussion forum is rife with complaints about the new update.

We’ve also had an iPhone 5 and iPad mini owner tell us about issues he’s having with one his favorite applications, Music Tube, which apparently hangs up after the iOS 7.1 update. We haven’t heard about many issues with third-party applications but it appears that some developers have their work cut out for them.

Users who are dealing with battery life issues will want to take a look at our iOS 7 battery life tips. Often times, a setting change or a reset will do wonders for a device. Grayed out Wi-Fi or broken Wi-Fi do not have any known fixes that work one hundred percent of the time. We highly suggest taking a look at this discussion post, it contains a number of temporary fixes for the issue.

Those who are dealing with keyboard lag after installing iOS 7.1 can try this fix. Simply head to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Keyboard Dictionary and that should iron out the kinks.

Most of the iOS 7.1 problems we’ve seen are relatively minor. Besides the Wi-Fi issues, we have yet to see any hero level bugs that Apple needs to address immediately.

Another Reason to Skip iOS 7.1

iPhone 4 on iOS 7.1

While there are plenty of reasons to install iOS 7.1, the performance tweaks and the new features being two of the better ones, there are some reasons to think about avoiding the iOS 7.1 update for the time being.

We outlined five of those reasons yesterday though we will reiterate them here. Here are five reasons why you might want to skip iOS 7.1 update right now:

  • If you’re thinking about jailbreaking.
  • If you’re worried about bugs.
  • If you’re traveling.
  • If you use your iPhone or iPad for work.
  • If you’re not prepared.

There is another reason why iPhone and iPad users might want to avoid iOS 7.1. According to TUAW, Apple has killed off a bug that was, oddly enough, embraced by many iPhone and iPad users.

iOS 7 allowed users to embed folders within folders. iOS 7.1 does not allow iPhone and iPad owners to embed folders within folders. It’s a bug that many people took advantage of but it looks like the fun ends in iOS 7.1. While I think the performance enhancements and other changes outweigh this feature, it’s something that iPhone and iPad owners should consider before installing.

What’s Next After iOS 7.1?

The IOS 8 release could bring two major improvements to Apple Maps.

The IOS 8 release could bring two major improvements to Apple Maps.

Considering we haven’t seen any hero level problems emerge in the last 24 hours, iPhone and iPad owners should not expect an imminent iOS 7.1.1 release. Apple tends to issue bug fix updates within a few weeks of major software releases so we should see a new update emerge before the arrival of iOS 8 later on this year.

Speaking of iOS 8, it’s reportedly going to be the next update that lands for iPhone and iPad. Rumors point to a number of big time upgrades including health related features and better Apple Maps data.

Of course, not everyone will see these changes. iPhone 4 and iPad 2 owners will likely remain on iOS 7.1 which make the improvements that Apple made inside iOS 7.1 that much more important.

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iOS 8 should arrive this summer at Apple’s annual WWDC developer event in San Francisco. It’s not clear when it will be released though iPhone 6 rumors point to an arrival in the summer or fall. New iOS software always accompanies new hardware.

Comments

  1. Larry says

    What a waste of time updat!! Everyone waited on this??? I see no difference at all just a few stupid new UI icons?? Hell that should have been there wen iOS 7 came out!! Apple sure gets people’s feathers in a ruffle?? Not me just like 6.1 last year Same old sh.t …. Ahhh YAWN!! Good one there Tim cook?? A brownie badge for you!!

  2. Maciekciek says

    On my iphone 5s everything looks great but on ipad air i’ve seen problem with Facebook app. The screen is frozen for a while after I open the app. It doesn’t respond to any gesture. It’s preety annoying…

  3. eeek says

    hello
    i updated my iphone 4s to ios 7.1 french yesterday and all worked fine the first day. but now i cannot use the tactile in ios ! so i cannot shut down the iphone neither nor unlock it. but it is not an hardware problem, for if i use siri to launch safari i can use the tactile in safari with no problem… i just cannot use the ios dashboard i’m stuck !

  4. eeek says

    else: i can open and close the notification center at the top and i can open the settings center at the bottom but not close it with tactile, only with central button.

  5. eeeek says

    well i pressed both buttons a long time and the iphone 4s rebooted and all works again for now but i’m not convinced by this update ! usually i beware of the odd updates @ apple, not the even ones !

  6. Sra. Chan says

    I updated 35+ iPad2s today – and now the laptop with which they sync seems to think they are attached to a different computer (never). This is a major issue… and I have no idea how to fix it. =(

  7. maddalo says

    Well, I installed iOS 7..1 and not can’t sync with iTunes. I’ve restarted, reinstalled iTunes, and can’t transfer new voice memos, which I really need to do, to my MacBook.

  8. Justfab says

    Anyone having battery issues? My battery has been draining like crazy since this update any suggestions?

  9. Larry says

    Yep same here justfab!! That update is worse than and android issue I used to have!! Hmmmmm windows??? NOT!!! Ahhhhh wake me up wen iOS 8 is here

  10. oddyoh says

    I’ve got huge keyboard lag on my iPad Air with this update…but my iPhone 5 is fine. I restored again from a backup, and it was fine for about 3 hours…and now it’s lagging again. Press a key, and seven seconds later the iPad responds. Pretty much unusable.

  11. CodeSmoke says

    Someone needs to get fired over this one…. I now have an iPad Air and an iPhone 5 that I can not type email / messages/ anything, so basically they are dead and worthless until this is fixed.

    So I know have $1500 worth of Apple Paper Weights that you can’t type on.

  12. Brendon Boby says

    My sons iPad air has not moved on the installing for 4 hours so far, plenty of advice about for after installation but nothing regarding during a possible installation problems …memory is fine too …10 pictures and downloaded 4apps so plenty of memory. I do wish I had got him the samsung like originally planned as this iPad air been a nightmare unlike my ipad3.

  13. Stephen Osvath says

    iOS 7.0.4 BROKE both my wife’s WiFi (now grayed out) and Bluetooth (non-functional). It’s obvious from the discussion forums all over the web that this was an iOS induced problem. We tried all of the “fixes” and nothing worked. We even wasted money on Apple support. Although we had high hopes, iOS 7.1 does NOT fix this issue.

    It’s professional malpractice (and probably illegal) that Apple doesn’t own up to this issue and offer replacements for iPhone 4S users affected by this bug. With no WiFi, my wife is forced to use up her cellular data. There is certainly an ethical issue here for Apple.

  14. reiji says

    i still encounter random crash on my ipod touch 5th gen after updating to iOS 7.1. It’s more apparent when playing music, my device just stopped then crashed…it’s frustrating that i can’t even use my device without encountering any crashes

  15. Sagar Pandit says

    Ios 7.1 has caused my mobile to shut off automatically many a times in a day even though the battery is 100%.Its really troublesome

  16. Teresa Ledesma says

    Same here Sam, when I double tap the home button to switch or close applications, it works only once in like 20 times. I ended up installing a “soft” home button on the screen. It not only happens on my Iphone 5, but on my 2 IPad Air that I also updated!!

  17. Charlene Crouse says

    Updated my I pad2 and now the key board is split in half. Half the key board is on the left of the screen and the other half on the right of the screen. Anyone else have that problem!!?? WoW I’m pissed

  18. Nancy R. says

    Facebook won’t open on either iPhone or iPad after this update. Deleted and reinstalled (NOT from cloud, fresh install), same problem. Message saying “Login Error – An unexpected error occurred. Please try logging in again.” EXTREMELY frustrating!

  19. April says

    Any suggestions how to fix the Facebook that is now not working?! Grrrrr! Stupid update!!!!!!

  20. Jeff G. says

    Having problems with Bluetooth after upgrading to iOS 7.1, here are 4 tips that may help you. bit.ly/1lDFpuU

  21. Bindu says

    Oho my god… After updating to iOS 7.1 my 5c is experiencing everyday with a new problem. Yesterday problem in time accusation and now wifi is not getting On. It’s is showing wifi not avilable msg. Really worried and even resettled my mobile but didn’t cameout from the problem. Please help me out with this problem. Iam not at all ready to loose my mobile.

  22. Glgbnaf says

    Did my 7.0.1 update got pissed but that’s fine I’m happy with my new nexus screw apple!!!

  23. factorial says

    ios 7.1 did NOT fix the rolling reboot on my iPhone 5. I have had the same random crashes, blue and black screen, and rolling reboots. Yes I have plenty of memory and have done clean installs the last one at the Genius Bar. They may have fixed one bug, but there are obviously more fixes to do. This has been going on for 4 ? months or so now and I now tell callers my phone may crash. The people at the Genius bar told me before the 7.1 release to buy a new phone, I told them my daughters 5S did the same thing so why bother?

  24. Larry says

    Them nerds at the Genius Bar are trained to say what they want not the truth, I did the better buisines buro and did a complaint at the apple where I go in Rancho Cucamonga ca and a week later apple called me and sent a new in a sealed box and than was all fine try that there it works what big company wants a bad remark against them?? So they settle

  25. Robin says

    Helpppppp!!!! Now that i did the update, my phone app is totally freezing up to where i get a blank white screen when i bring it up to call out. Nada!! How can i use my phone is the phone app is now messed up due to this update??? :( I have a 4 iphone….so now what can i do to get my phone app to stop freezing so i can actually call out?

  26. Mark says

    Did update today, iPad mini has crashed 3 times today for the first time since I’ve had it.

  27. mehrnoosh says

    after upgrading to ios 7.1 my charger doesnt work,unless i plugg it into my pcusb:( i tried other cables but it doesnt work either,what should i do???

  28. lam says

    Can not move photos via USB to PC since ios7.1 update. Am I the only one with this problem?

  29. Margareta Andersson de Perez says

    I updated my Ipad yesterday and I lost all, that is all my dokuments from Pages and all my contacts in my Voip app. I am desperate, that was a years worth of writing that went up in smoke. Is there any way to backtrack and recuperate the lost documents. Please does anyone have an idea.

    • Ramona Crossley says

      I had this same problem. How do I get my Pages documents that were lost when I updated my IPad? F

  30. Lisa says

    Facebook has not been available to use for several months. It says “Login error” or “Could not connect to server.” I love my iPad but when I show it to my friends or a family member, they will say that I got “ripped off” or “better off with a Windows surface tablet.”

    Please, please, PLEASE help me out here.

  31. Tracy Rayner says

    Cant charge mine iphone 5s unless it is switched off.
    Cant connect to pc via usb as it doesnt show up as being connected.
    Has been like this since the update…
    FU Apple.

  32. Kelly says

    can’t connect to my icons Facebook, shutterfly…Apple hope you are in the works of fixing this. My battery life is drained..UGHHHHH

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