Top iPhone problems solved

If you’re struggling with a slow iPhone, rubbish battery life or crashing apps, take control and make things right again.

Below, we’ve bundled together some of the most frequent iPhone complaints, revealing the best ways to solve the problems and get your device back in shape.

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One of my apps keeps crashing

Update the app

Our latest mobile phone reliability survey showed that app freezes and crashes are more common than you’d think. If one of your apps is broken, make sure it’s up to date. You can also try installing the latest iOS firmware version to improve stability. See ‘check for software updates’, below, for tips on how to do it.

Uninstall and reinstall

It’s the iPhone equivalent of turning your PC off and on again. Try uninstalling the temperamental app, then download it again. To remove it, press and hold your finger on the app icon and tap X. Head to the App Store to download it again. Remember that you’ll lose saved profiles, settings and files associated with that app when you remove it.

Contact the developer

Head to the App Store and navigate to the app you’re having trouble with. Tap App Support and you’ll be redirected to the developer’s website, or provided with an email address to contact.

I’ve forgotten my iPhone passcode

How to reset your iPhone depends on whether or not you’ve previously synced it with iTunes. If you have, connect it to your computer and open the Summary page. Wait for iTunes to back up your data. If it doesn’t do that automatically, click Sync. Next, click Restore iPhone. This will wipe your mobile clean, so you’ll lose content you haven’t backed up. Load up your iPhone and tap Restore from iTunes Backup on the Apps & Data page. Your content will be returned to the gadget, and you’ll be able to set a new passcode.

If you’ve never used your iPhone with iTunes, you’ll need to put it in recovery mode. Connect it to your PC or Mac. If you’re on an iPhone 6s or earlier, press and hold the sleep/wake and home buttons at the same time. Don’t let go until you see the Apple logo appear. On an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus, you’ll need to hold down the sleep/wake and volume-down buttons. Once you’re on the recovery-mode screen (right), iTunes will identify your mobile and give you the option to restore or update. Click Restore.

Battery life on my iPhone is poor

Dealing with an iPhone that runs out of juice quickly isn’t fun. We suggest you free up some space on your device before trying anything else. See below for space-saving tips.

Airplane Mode

For a quick fix, you can try Airplane Mode. Swipe up from the bottom of your screen and tap the plane icon. Airplane Mode disables all the wireless features on your iPhone that use up precious battery life. Turning it on means you won’t be able to browse the web or check your emails, but it’s a sure way to squeeze more out of your battery.

Check for software updates

It’s also worth checking if your iPhone is running the latest firmware, because updates can improve battery life. Go to SettingsGeneral > Software Update.

View battery usage

To get a better sense of why your battery life is poor, check which apps are having the biggest impact. Tap on Settings and then head to Battery. Here, you’ll see a list of your installed apps, ordered by battery usage. Consider waving goodbye to the biggest offenders.

Factory reset

If all else fails, a factory reset could be in order. If you’re willing to try this, make sure you’ve backed up your important data to the cloud. When you’re ready, tap Settings > General and scroll down to Reset. Hitting Erase All Content and Settings will revert your iPhone back to the way it was when you first bought it. If you’re still having issues after a factory reset, it’s likely you’re dealing with a hardware issue. An appointment at the Apple store might be the answer.

My screen has frozen

Forcing your device to restart can resolve a frozen screen, and doing so won’t delete anything on your iPhone. If you’re using an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus, press (and hold down) the sleep/wake button and the volume-down button at the same time. Once you see the Apple logo appear on-screen, let go of the buttons. For iOS users on an iPhone 6s or earlier, press (and hold down) the sleep/wake button and home button. Release when you see the logo.

I’m running out of space on my iPhone

Get rid of apps you don’t use

An iPhone that’s jam-packed with apps and files can slow down. To make things right, you might have to be brutal and get rid of apps you don’t use often. To see which apps on your iPhone take up the most space, tap Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage > Manage Storage. Consider which large apps you could live without.

For advice on hiding pre-installed apps, head over to our post on how to delete pre-installed apps and free up space.

Store your files in the cloud

Alternatively, you might want to enlist the help of a cloud storage service. Apple’s iCloud gives you 5GB of space free of charge. You can upgrade to 50GB for 70p monthly. Other options include Dropbox (with 2GB of free storage) and Google Drive (15GB free).

My screen has smashed. Can Apple fix it?

If the unthinkable happens and you crack your iPhone screen, you can either go through Apple or try a third-party repair service to get it fixed. If you go for option A, note that AppleCare+ customers can get a screen fixed for £25. Of course, the out-of-warranty price is far higher, ranging from £186 to £326 depending on your model. You might find a better deal going third party. For reliable local traders, visit the Which? Trusted Traders website.

For more on cracked iPhone screens and a full cost breakdown, see our guide to how to fix a cracked iPhone screen.

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