Ugh, dealing with a slow anything is pretty damn annoying. Especially a slow phone. It’s not until mine slows down to sluggish speeds do I realize how much I take it for granted when it’s running efficiently. When apps start to open at less than a snail’s pace and the touch screen doesn’t respond much like a brick wall, well, Ms. Sweet Brown says it best, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”
Here are some common reasons why your iPhone may be running slow and how you can fix it!
1. Your iPhone is low on storage
Put simply. low storage = low memory = low processing power = slow phone. To clear up storage on your iPhone, go through your photos and videos and back up the ones you want to keep onto an external hard drive or onto a cloud storage service like Dropbox and then delete them from your phone. You should also go to Settings>General>Storage & iCloud Usage>Manage Storage. Here you’ll see a list of apps and how much space they are taking up on your phone. Decide which ones you want to keep and delete any that you’re not using.
Bonus Tip: A good rule of thumb that I like to go by is if I haven’t used an app in over a couple of months, I’ll delete it. If I’m not using it, it’s just taking up unnecessary space; I recommend doing an “App Audit” once every couple of months to help keep things speedy.
2. You’ve got a ton of old text message threads
This is one that I always forget but text message threads can take up gigabytes of storage space (see #1)–especially if you are sending or receiving lots of images and videos. There are a couple of ways to clear out old text message threads. First, you can delete individual message threads within the text messages app by either swiping left on the thread to reveal the delete button or by tapping “Edit” in the top left corner and then selecting the threads you want to delete. Secondly, you can go into Settings>Messages and under “Keep Messages” you can select how long you want your phone to hold onto messages. I have mine set to 30 days.
3. You haven’t deleted a voicemail since 1982
*Looks around, raises hand*. Guilty as charged. I am totally one of those people that don’t check their voicemail for months on end. I don’t know why, but I just hate checking my voicemail–it’s literally the worst. Consequently, my unchecked voicemails end up taking up unnecessary space. If your iPhone is running slow, be sure to clear those babies out.
Note: Your iPhone stores the last 20 deleted voicemails. Be sure to delete these as well if you no longer need them by going to Voicemail>Deleted Voicemails>Clear All.
4. You have a bunch of apps open and running in the background
When you minimize out of an app, it doesn’t actually close out of it. The app keeps running in the background which uses up memory. To completely close out of apps, double-tap the home button to reveal the “multitasking view”. Swipe up on any apps you aren’t currently using.
Note: Some apps remain running in the background even after you completely close out of them because, at one time, they were given permission to do so. To check which apps have this permission, go to Settings>General>Background App Refresh. Here you can decide which apps you want to keep on in the background. What the Background App Refresh function does is it keeps an app running so that when you open it, in theory, it will open exactly where you left off and not need to reload or fetch new information. I personally have mine turned off because I don’t find this function to be particularly important, plus it can really suck down battery life. To disable completely go to Settings>General>Background App Refresh and then toggle the switch to off.
5. Your iPhone and apps need to be updated
This one’s easy. Keeping things updated will help your iPhone run smoother and faster. Updates aim to fix any bugs from previous versions that may be contributing to slow speeds.
6. Your phone hasn’t been turned off in a loooooooong time
Every now and then your phone may need a quick refresh to get things back to efficiency. Try turning your phone on and off by pressing and holding the power/sleep button on the side until “Slide to power off” appears.
7. Ok, so you’ve tried all of the above and your iPhone is STILL slow AF
It’s time to hard reset your iPhone. I say this with the disclaimer that you should only do this if you’ve tried everything else. A hard reset restarts the phone and it also refreshes the memory that apps run in (don’t worry; this doesn’t delete your data or your settings). You can do this by simultaneously holding down the home and power/sleep button until the screen goes black, and then white and then the Apple icon appears. You can let go once the Apple logo appears. This should generally set the phone back to the basics. Think of it like restarting your computer when things get funky.
If your browser app is running slow, be sure to clear your browsing history to free up some memory. To do this, open up your browsing app; if it’s Chrome tap the three dots icon in the upper right-hand corner and then History>Clear Browsing Data, if you use Safari then click on the open book icon in the bottom toolbar and then History>Clear.
Hopefully now, after completing the above tips, your phone is back to blazing fast speeds and you are no longer annoyed by technology.
Thank you so much for checking out my tips on how to fix a slow iPhone! I’m excited to share with you this super cute glitch rainbow iPhone wallpaper that I made specifically for this post! Go ahead and download it and set it as your wallpaper!(mobile: hold down and tap “Save Image”, desktop: right-click and select “Save Image As”.)