How to Get Better iOS 8 Performance on iPhone 5

If you’ve noticed a decline in performance after installing the iOS 8 update on the iPhone 5, this guide will help you change several settings to speed up iOS 8 on your aging former flagship iPhone.

Last month, after a stint inside the company’s beta program, iOS 8 finally made its way to iPhones, iPads, and iPod touches all over the world. Unlike iOS 7, Apple’s new iOS 8 update does not overhaul the look and feel of the iOS operating system. Instead, it builds on the foundation left behind by iOS 7 by adding new features, tweaks and enhancements aimed at improving Apple’s software from last year.


While the iOS 8 update delivered a host of new features to iPhone 5, iPad and iPod touch users, it also delivered a number of problems including a decrease in performance issues on older devices like the iPhone 5, iPhone 4s, and iPad 3. We ourselves have noticed some of the iOS 8 issues and we’ve detailed them in our extensive coverage of Apple’s iOS 8, iOS 8.0.1 and iOS 8.0.2 updates.

Here's how to get better iOS 8 performance on iPhone 5.

Here’s how to get better iOS 8 performance on iPhone 5.

While iOS 8 might not be performing up to snuff on some of these older devices, there a few changes you can make to speed up and improve the performance inside iOS 8 on iPhone 5.


After changing these settings on the iPhone 5, we’ve found that the device is slightly faster in some areas where animations are no longer present. Multitasking loads faster and some apps load faster as well. It’s not going to be night and day for most iPhone 5 users though the differences in the before and after should be noticeable.


Of course, there are some trade offs. You’ll notice that instead of smooth transitions between the home screen and multitasking there is a jump straight to multitasking. It doesn’t look as nice but it’s the price you’re going to have to pay if you want an uptick in performance after installing iOS 8 on the aging iPhone 5.

How to Speed Up the iPhone 5 on iOS 8

Here, we’re going to focus on four tips that can help you speed up iOS 8 on the iPhone 5. Again, this won’t deliver a completely new experience and you may not even want to call it fast, but it should help with overall performance.

Reduce Motion

You can turn off Parallax on the iPhone 5 to see some speed enhancements within iOS 8. To do this, go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Reduce Motion. Tap to turn Reduce Motion On.



This turns off the motion when you are on the home screen and in some other places where motion might look nice, but can also slow down the iPhone 5’s performance. This is one of those trade offs that we were talking about and if you’ve been using iOS 7 for some time now, this change is going to look a little funky.


The next setting to change is to turn off transparency. This replaces the frosted glass look in various areas with a solid gray color. Once again, this doesn’t look will make iOS 8 look a bit duller but with this and the other setting turned on, you should see a some noticeable differences when it comes to performance.


Go to Settings -> General > Accessibility > Increase Contrast > Reduce Transparency -> On.


If you are almost out of storage it can lead to some app crashes and general odd behavior in iOS. Make sure you have more than a few MB of storage. To do this go to Settings -> General -> Usage -> Look at Available Storage.



If for some reason you have less than 100MB of storage available, you may want to remove an app, delete a movie or television show or move some of your photos and videos to a computer.

Reset All Settings

If your iOS 8 experience on iPhone 5 feels slow and perhaps buggy, you may see some improvements by resetting all of your settings. This will not delete your files, but you will need to rejoin Wi-Fi networks, reconnect to Bluetooth devices and put your passcode back into place.

This essentially puts all of the iPhone settings back to where they were before you fiddled with things. Once again, don’t expect miracles, but there is always a chance it can fix some lingering iOS 8 issues.



To do this, go to General > Reset > Reset All Settings. If you have a pass code enter it to proceed. You should not lose any data though you may want to make a backup just in case.