We’re having an excellent experience on iOS 13, but iPhone SE users are complaining about a variety of performance problems including lockups, freezes, general, lag, and random reboots. These issues are extremely common and you’ll find them across Apple’s iPhone lineup.
If your iPhone SE starts to exhibit lag or frequently reboot itself, you don’t need to schedule an appointment to see a Genius at the Apple Store. There’s a very good chance you’ll be able to solve your performance issues from your house or office in a matter of minutes, seconds even.
In this guide we’ll show you a few ways to fix iPhone SE performance issues should they arise after an iOS 13 update or completely out of the blue.
Restart Your iPhone SE
If you start noticing performance issues like lag and lockups, try restarting your iPhone SE. Hold down the power button, slide to turn it off, leave it off for a minute or so, and then turn it back on to check performance.
You can also try hard resetting the phone which is done by holding down the power button and the home button at the same time until the Apple logo appears.
Update Your iPhone SE
If you’re running an outdated version of iOS, consider downloading the latest software to your iPhone SE.
To check what version of iOS 13 you’re currently running, go into Settings, then About, and check under Version. If you aren’t running the latest update, you’ll want to install the software.
To do that, head into Settings, then General, then Software update. If a new update is available, you’ll be prompted to download and install the software.
Make sure you read reviews before you make your move.
Delete What You Don’t Need
If you’ve owned your iPhone SE for awhile you’ve probably accumulated a ton of data on your device’s internal hard drive. Photos, videos, apps, things of that nature.
Some people are really good about keeping their device’s hard drive clean, others not so much. If you fall into the latter category, it might be time to examine the contents of your phone because clutter can slow down your iPhone.
To do this, head into your iPhone SE’s Settings and tap on iPhone Storage. There, you’ll get a detailed look at what’s taking up space on your device. Go down the list and decide what to keep and what to delete. You’d be surprised how much space Messages and Videos take up on your phone.
If you’re running a newer version of iOS on your iPhone SE, you will also get some personalized recommendations about how to free up space on your device.
Stop Your Auto Downloads
Automatic updates are extremely useful if you’re bad about keeping your apps and services updated with the latest features and fixes. Auto downloads are useful, but they can also slow down your phone.
If you don’t mind manually updating your applications on the App Store, try disabling Automatic Downloads on your iPhone SE and see if you get a boost.
Head into your Settings app, then iTunes & App Store. Once you’re in there, toggle Updates, located in the Automatic Downloads section, off.
You might toggle the other options off as well. You can always turn them back on later.
Clear Browser Cookies & Data
Clearing your browser’s cookies and data will free up memory which could help speed up your iPhone SE.
If you use Safari on your iPhone SE, head into your Settings, then Safari, and then go down to Clear History and Website Data. Give it a tap.
Tapping on this button will remove your browsing history, cookies, and other data from Safari. Your history will also be cleared from any other devices signed into your iCloud account. If that sounds good to you, tap Clear History and Data again.
If you use Google Chrome on your iPhone SE, you’ll want to head into Chrome and tap the three horizontal circles in the bottom right corner.
A popup will appear. From there, tap Settings, then Privacy, and then Clear Browsing Data. You can now select what you wish to delete from your device.
If you’re noticing serious lag on your iPhone SE, you might want to get rid of everything. To do that, select them all and then click Clear Browsing Data.
The iPhone SE’s animations are nifty, but toning them down could help improve your device’s performance.
If the animations on your iPhone SE suddenly get choppy or slow, head on into the Settings app, then General, then Accessibility, and then toggle Reduce Motion on.
We also recommend reducing the transparency and blur effects on your device. To get that done, head into Settings, then General, then Accessibility, and then tap Increase Contrast and then tap the toggle to turn on the Reduce Transparency function.
The software will feel a bit different, but it’s a small price to pay for improving performance.
Kill Background Refresh
If you have Background App Refresh enabled, your iPhone SE will work to keep your apps updated with fresh data. It’s a nice feature, but you probably don’t need it turned on for all of your apps.
If you don’t want or need apps working in the background, turn this feature off. You can shut it off completely or you can run down a list and toggle it off on a case-by-case basis.
To get this done head into Settings, then General, then Background App Refresh, and then toggle Background Refresh off. If you’d prefer to pick and choose, you’ll need to go down your list of apps and toggle them off or on one by one.
Reset All Settings
If none of those remedies work, try resetting your iPhone SE’s settings to their factory defaults. To do that, head into Settings, then General, then Reset, and then and select Reset All Settings at the top.
Before you do this, make sure you have your Wi-Fi passwords handy. This will cause your iPhone SE to forget known connections.
If the current version of iOS is treating your iPhone SE badly, you can try downgrading to an older version assuming one is available.
If you’re fine with dropping down, take a look at our guide to downgrading iOS. It will hold your hand through the entire process.
Wiping your iPhone SE and starting over is a tedious process, but it could have a dramatic effect on your device’s overall performance.
Once you’ve made a proper backup, head into your iPhone SE’s Settings, then General, then Reset, then Erase All Content and Settings and get the ball rolling.
Install iOS 14.1 for Better Security
If security is important to you, think about installing the iOS 14/iOS 14.1 update right away.
iOS 14.1 doesn't bring any known security patches to the iPhone, but if you skipped iOS 14.0, you'll get its security updates with your upgrade.
iOS 14.0 brought 11 new security patches to your iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.
If you skipped iOS 13.7 or any older versions of iOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your iOS 14.1 update.
In addition to those patches, iOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari.
For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.
With iOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them.
There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.
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