The iPhone SE’s iOS 11 update is performing at a high level on our device, but some users are noticing issues with battery life, Wi-Fi connectivity, iTunes, Bluetooth, and touchscreen problems.
Apple hasn’t confirmed a release date for its next iOS update and that means iPhone SE users struggling on iOS 11, and iOS 10, are on their own until a new update arrives.
If you run into an iPhone SE problem, your first instinct might be to schedule an appointment at your local Apple Store or to take the phone down to your local carrier location. Those are certainly options, but there’s a chance you’ll be able to fix the issue on your own in a matter of minutes.
In this guide we’ll show you how to fix the most common iPhone SE problems including severe battery drain, connectivity issues, lag, sound problems, and a few other annoying issues.
How to Fix iPhone SE Battery Life Issues
One of the most common iPhone SE problems is abnormal battery drain. This is issue always pops up after Apple releases a new iOS update though often times it seemingly comes out of nowhere.
If you’re dealing with severe battery drain on your iPhone SE, take a look at our list of fixes. If nothing there works, you might have a bad battery.
How to Fix iPhone SE Performance Problems
We’ve been hearing about a wide range of iPhone SE performance issues in the aftermath of the iOS 11 release. Some users are noticing more frequent lag, others are seeing random reboots and lockups.
If you’re noticing a drop in performance on your iPhone SE, take a peek at our guide to fixing performance issues. Our walkthrough will help you speed up your iPhone SE in minutes.
How to Fix iPhone SE iTunes Issues
Some iPhone SE users are running into issues with iTunes. iTunes either doesn’t recognize the iPhone SE or they’re simply unable to connect to the service. Some users are reportedly getting the following message: “The iPhone cannot be used because it requires a newer version of iTunes. Go to www.itunes.com to download the latest version of iTunes.”
If you’re running into issues with iTunes, make sure you’ve updated to the latest version. Apple added sync support for the iPhone SE and iPad Pro starting with iTunes version 12.5.4. We’re now on iTunes 12.7.1.
If you’re running the current version of iTunes, and you’re positive your Lightning cable and ports are working properly, make sure you’re running the latest version of Windows or macOS.
If your computer spits out a Trust this Computer alert, unlock your iPhone SE and tap Trust. If it still doesn’t work, restart your iPhone SE and try again.
If none of that works, Apple’s got some more in-depth fixes listed over on its support page.
How to Fix iPhone SE Bluetooth Problems
Many iPhone SE users are complaining about Bluetooth issues. Bluetooth problems are extremely common and they can be extremely tricky to fix.
If your Bluetooth connectivity starts acting up, go into Settings > Bluetooth > and select the Bluetooth connection having issues using the “i” in the circle.
On the next screen tap Forget this Device and then try reconnecting to the Bluetooth device giving you problems.
If that doesn’t work, go into your iPhone SE’s Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. Make sure you have your Wi-Fi passwords handy because this will cause the iPhone SE to forget them. Try reconnecting to the Bluetooth device.
You can also try resetting your iPhone SE’s settings to their factory defaults. To do this, head into Settings > General > Reset > Reset All Settings. This could take a few minutes and it will also cause your iPhone SE to forget Wi-Fi passwords.
We also recommend updating to the latest version of iOS 11.
If you’re dealing with Bluetooth issues in the car and nothing here works, you should consult your car manual. If that doesn’t help, make an appointment with customer service at your local dealership and see if they can diagnose the issue.
How to Fix iPhone SE Wi-Fi Problems
Wi-Fi issues are also a bit tricky to fix and we’ve seen many iPhone SE users cry out for potential remedies. Here are a few to try if your Wi-Fi speeds suddenly become slow or non-existent.
The first thing you’ll want to do is check your router. To be safe, restart your router (unplug for a minute and plug back in) and see if that jumpstarts your Wi-Fi connectivity.
You’ll also want to check your internet service provider for an outage. You can do that via DownDetector, social media sites like Twitter, or through your provider’s customer service.
If you’re experiencing slower than normal Wi-Fi speeds, and you’re positive it’s not a router issue or an outage, try resetting your iPhone SE’s network settings.
Head into your Settings app > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings. This will cause your device to forget your Wi-Fi passwords so make have those handy.
If your Wi-Fi is still busted, it’s time to forget the Wi-Fi network in question. Go into your device’s Settings > Wi-Fi > and select your connection by tapping the “i” in the circle.
On the next screen tap Forget this Network at the top of the screen. This will also cause your device to forget the Wi-Fi password so make sure you have that with you.
You can also try restarting your iPhone SE. Hold down the power button, slide to shut it off, wait 30 seconds or so, and then power it back on.
If nothing works, take a look at Apple’s guide to iPhone Wi-Fi problems for additional fixes.
How to Fix iPhone SE iCloud Restore Problems
Some iPhone SE users are experiencing iCloud Restore issues.
If you encounter iCloud Restore problems on your iPhone SE, create a local backup on your computer and then restore the backup to your iPhone SE.
If you’re unable to get your old iPhone’s data backed up, check out our guide to iCloud backup problems and fixes. Apple’s also released a guide that takes you through some of the most common iCloud backup issues.
If your iPhone SE suddenly gets stuck updating iCloud Settings, you’ll want to hold down the device’s power button and volume down button at the same time and wait for the iPhone SE to reboot itself. Once it reboots, try again.
How to Fix iPhone SE Sound Issues
If your iPhone SE’s speakers suddenly cut out or if the sound becomes distorted, here’s what you can do.
First, you’ll want to check the Ring/Silent switch on the side of your device to make sure it’s set in the correct position. There’s a chance you accidentally nudged it while holding the phone.
If it’s set correctly, restart your iPhone SE. You might also try performing a hard reset by holding down the volume down and power button at the same time.
If your sound is still wonky, try turning your Bluetooth off and on. If the sound is still missing, check for dust or debris that could be blocking the speaker grille or the phone’s Lightning Dock.
If your microphone suddenly stops working or starts randomly cutting out, restart your iPhone SE. You can also try restoring your phone from a backup.
If you’re experiencing poor call quality, restart your phone to see if that corrects the issue.
If it doesn’t, check the iPhone SE’s receiver to make sure it isn’t blocked by debris or your screen protector. The receiver is the slit located above the device’s screen.
You can also try removing your case, disabling Bluetooth, or switching LTE from Voice & Data to just Data. Head into Settings > Cellular, tap Cellular Data Options > tap Enable LTE > tap Data Only.
If none of that helps, you might want to download the latest version of iOS 11.
How to Fix iPhone SE App Store Problems
If your iPhone SE can’t connect to the App Store, first make sure Apple’s service isn’t down. If it’s green, try restarting our hard setting your iPhone SE.
If that doesn’t work, try toggling your cellular data on if it’s off. Head into your Settings > Cellular Data > and scroll down to the App Store and toggle it on if it’s off.
If cellular data is active and it’s still busted, sync the date and time on your iPhone SE by going to General > Date & Time. Toggle Set Automatically to off then scroll down to set the data and time manually.
Once you’ve done that, head into the App Store, leave it open for a few seconds, and go back to Date & Time and toggle Set Automatically back to on.
Now, close the App Store in your multitasking tray and open it again to see if the App Store is working properly. It should be.
How to Fix iPhone SE Screen Issues
If your iPhone SE’s screen is unresponsive, hard reset the phone. Hold down the power Button and the volume down button at the same time and wait for it to reboot.
If the issue is happening inside of an app, close the app and reopen it. You’ll also want to make sure your iPhone SE’s screen is clean and dry. Moisture will affect gestures and taps.
If you’re having 3D Touch problems, try resetting your iPhone SE’s settings. Go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset All Settings. Your device will forget known Wi-Fi passwords, but you won’t lose any of your data.
How to Fix iPhone SE Touch ID Issues
If you’re having issues with your iPhone SE’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor, take a look at our guide to fixing common Touch ID problems.
How to Fix iPhone SE Problems If Nothing Else Works
If you can’t find a fix on this list, here are a few additional resources.
If Apple’s online customer service is unable to help, you can try downgrading to an older version of iOS if an update is available for the iPhone SE.
If don’t want to downgrade, schedule an appointment to see a Genius at your local Apple Store. If you don’t have an Apple Store near you, try a carrier store.
If nothing works, you might want to wipe your phone clean with a factory reset. This is a time consuming process, but it could have a positive effect on your iPhone SE’s performance.
Once you’ve backed up all of your important files, go to Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings.
Install iOS 11.3.1 for Better Security
Apple's iOS 11.3.1 update comes with four known security patches for all iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch models capable of running iOS 11.
If you skipped iOS 11.3, your iOS 11.3.1 update comes with 27 additional patches for potential exploits. Those of you lingering on iOS 11.2.6 would be wise to make the move sooner rather than later.
If you missed iOS 11.3, your iOS 11.3.1 update also includes a new privacy feature. When an Apple feature wants to use your personal information, an icon now appears with a link to access detailed information about how your data will be used and protected.
If you're running iOS 11.2.5 or older, you're exposed to an issue that lets people send a specific character that will crash an iOS-powered device and block access to the Messages app. It can also block apps like Facebook Messenger, Gmail, Outlook, and WhatsApp.
The iOS 11.2.6 update's main purpose was to patch up this issue. If you skipped iOS 11.2.6, you'll get these enhancements with iOS 11.3.1.
If you're running iOS 11.2.2 or below and receive a certain GitHub link through your Messages app, your iPhone or iPad can lockup or respring. The Messages app will also become unusable.
If you're on iOS 11.2.1, your iOS 11.3.1 update includes security improvements to Safari and WebKit to mitigate the effects of Spectre. If you're running an older version of iOS, your iOS 11.3.1 update will come with a lot more.
Apple's iOS 11.2 update fixed several problems, but it also brought problems of its own including a potentially nasty zero-day iOS HomeKit vulnerability.
The vulnerability, discovered by Tian Zhang, allowed for unauthorized control of HomeKit accessories including garage door openers and smart locks.
Apple quickly rolled out a server-side fix, but the company restored full functionality with the release of iOS 11.2.1. If you skipped iOS 11.2.1 and use HomeKit, you should download iOS 11.3.
If you skipped iOS 11.2, you'll get a few more patches with your iOS 11.3.1 update. Apple's iOS 11.2 update delivered 11 patches including one for Mail and one for Wi-Fi.
The iOS 11.2 and iOS 11.2.1 updates also patched up a widespread security issue called "Meltdown." Apple says its analysis suggests it "has the most potential to be exploited."
Meltdown affects all iOS 11 powered devices so we highly recommend downloading iOS 11.3.1 if you skipped iOS 11.2.
If you skipped iOS 11.1.2, iOS 11.1.1, and iOS 11.1, you'll get additional patches with your iOS 11.3.1 update.
The iOS 11.1 update delivered eight security patches including a fix for a serious Wi-Fi vulnerability called KRACK or Key Reinstallation Attack. KRACK is an exploit that targets the common WPA2 encryption protocol.
If you're just now making to move from iOS 10 (or whatever you're on) to iOS 11, your iOS 11.3.1 update will come with even more security features.
In iOS 11 you can't establish trust with a PC using fingerprints alone. You'll also need to put in a full passcode in order to gain that trust.
If you skipped older versions of iOS, your iOS 11.3.1 update will come with an even longer list of security patches.
Apple's iOS 10.3.3 update delivered 24 security patches addressing potential issues with Contacts, Messages, Notifications, and Safari. It also included a patch for a potentially dangerous Wi-Fi exploit called "Broadpwn."
If you skipped iOS 10.3.2 you'll get 23 additional patches with iOS 11.3.1. And if for some reason you missed iOS 10.3, you'll get 60 security patches with your iOS 11.3.1 update.
If you want to protect the data you store on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, you should make your move to iOS 11 and iOS 11.3.1 soon.
This is particularly important for those of you running older versions of iOS.