The iPhone SE is Apple’s best small screen smartphone, but it’s far from perfect. iPhone SE owners are dealing with a myriad of problems.
We haven’t run into any major software on our iPhone SE, but some users are noticing bugs and a drop in performance. iOS updates aren’t supposed to have a negative effect on your device so this is obviously concerning.
Today we want to address these iPhone SE problems and take you through the most important things those dealing with issues, and those worried about issues, need to know.
Our guide to iPhone SE problems outlines the current set of issues and provides you with some resources that will come in handy if you run into something on your phone.
It also includes some information about the next iOS update for the iPhone SE.
iPhone SE Problems
The current list of iPhone SE problems features some familiar faces, issues that’ve popped up on every iPhone Apple’s ever made.
We’re hearing about severe battery drain where the device can barely hold a charge. We’re also hearing about issues with Wi-Fi connectivity, Bluetooth devices, abnormal amounts of UI lag when opening folders and apps and while moving around the home screen, random reboots, and issues with first-party apps like Mail and Podcasts.
We’re also seeing complaints about problems with the iPhone SE’s speakers where sound sometimes becomes distorted, issues with the device’s touch screen, problems with the temperature of the device (it sometimes runs abnormally hot), and issues with the phone’s camera.
Problems can emerge, whenever, wherever, so you’ll want to be as prepared as you can. We highly recommend backing up the files on your iPhone SE on a regular basis. Once a week at least.
If you aren’t sure where to start, we’ve put together a guide that will take you through the backup process using Apple’s iTunes software and a guide that details the backup process via Apple’s iCloud service.
We’ve also released a pre-installation guide to iOS updates that will take you through some things to do before installing new software on your device.
Apple will periodically release bug fixes for the iPhone SE and you’ll want to make sure you, and your device, are prepared before initiating the download.
Where to Find Feedback
You’ll also want to dig into feedback and fixes from iPhone SE users, particularly right after a new iOS update is released. There are a few places to do that.
We’ve also released our own feedback about the iPhone SE’s iOS 12.4 update and we’ll continue to provide feedback about the device’s hardware and software in the months ahead.
How to Fix iPhone SE Problems
If you run into trouble on your iPhone SE your first instinct might be to contact Apple, schedule an appointment to see a Genius, or take the phone into your local carrier store. These are all options, good options, but you might be able to fix the issue from the comfort of your home or office.
Before you get in contact with Apple or your carrier, take a look at our list of fixes for common problems. It offers fixes for the most common problems.
If you can’t find a fix on our lists your next move should be a quick look at Apple’s discussion forums. There are a ton of knowledgable people over there and they might have the perfect solution to your issue.
If the company’s online customer support can’t help you, it’s time to take your phone in to a physical store. If you have an Apple store close to you, make an Genius Bar appointment.
Downgrade Your iPhone SE
If you just made the move to iOS 12, you’re stuck. Apple’s closed off the iOS 11 update which means there’s no getting off iOS 12 once you make the move.
If iOS 12.4 is causing problems on your iPhone SE, you’re also stuck because Apple recently closed off the downgrade path to iOS 12.3.1 and iOS 12.3. The path back to older versions of iOS 12 is also closed off.
Downgrading isn’t a surefire way to fix whatever’s plaguing your iPhone SE, but there’s a chance your device’s performance returns to normal on an older version of iOS 12.
If you’re interested in the downgrade process, take a look at our guide.
Apple hasn’t confirmed iOS 12.4.1 or iOS 12.5 so there’s a good chance the next version of iOS Apple releases is the upcoming iOS 13 update.
The iPhone SE will get upgraded to iOS 13 this fall. That said, if you don’t want to wait for the official release, and if you’re running into major issues on iOS 12.4 we don’t blame you, you can try the iOS 13 beta on your device right now.
The iOS 13 beta is riddled with issues, but it’s worth a shot if you can’t find a fix for your issues.
For more on iOS 13, take a look at our guide.
Install iOS 12.4 for Better Security
If you're on the fence, here's one of the best reasons to install iOS 12.4.
If you value your device's security, you'll want to download iOS 12.4 in the near future because it brings important security patches for your device.
iOS 12.4 brings 19 security patches to the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. If you're interested in the specifics, you can read about them on Apple's security site.
If you skipped iOS 12.3, your iOS 12.4 update carries iOS 12.3's security patches on board. The iOS 12.3 update brought 23 patches and you can read about all of them right here.
If you skipped iOS 12.2, you'll get its security patches with your version of iOS 12.4.
iOS 12.2 brought a whopping 41 security patches to iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch in March. You can read more about the iOS 12.2's patches over on the company's website.
It's important to note that Apple's iOS 12.2 update patched up an exploit that allowed websites to use motion sensors to "fingerprint" devices.
Fortunately, Apple's patched up the issue. If you skipped it, you'll probably want to move to iOS 12.4 soon.
If you skipped iOS 12.1.4, you get four important security patches including fixes for a widespread FaceTime eavesdropping bug that lets you call someone via FaceTime and hear the audio coming from their phone before they pick up the phone.
If you skipped iOS 12.1.3, you get some additional patches with your version of iOS 12.4. Again, they're baked into your upgrade.
Apple lists a grand total of 23 patches on board iOS 12.1.3 and you can read about all of them over on Apple's website.
If you skipped iOS 12.1.1, you'll want to install the iOS 12.4 update on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch today.
The iOS 12.1.1 update brought 17 patches for potential security exploits. They'll will help protect your phone. You can read about them here.
If you skipped iOS 12.1, you'll get the 24 patches from that update with your version of iOS 12.4. If you skipped iOS 12.0.1, your iOS 12.4 update brings two additional patches. Both patches are for potential lock screen exploits.
If you skipped iOS 12.0, and you're still running iOS 11.4.1 or below, your iOS 12.4 update comes with a longer list of security updates.
The iOS 12.0 update delivered 16 patches for security issues. You can read about all of them over on Apple's security page.
In addition to those patches, iOS 12 delivers new security features aimed at protecting you and the data you store on your device. These include:
Long story short, if you store sensitive data on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you have some really good reasons to upgrade to iOS 12.4 today.
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