iOS 9.3.1 Problems: 5 Things You Need to Know

The 9.3 update delivered a batch of new features and enhancements but it also arrived with some serious including one that forced Apple to roll out a brand new 9.3.1 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

We had a hunch the 9.3 release date would land on March 21st and it did. Apple rolled it out to iPhone and iPad owners shortly after the conclusion of its iPhone SE and new iPad Pro launch event in San Francisco.

As expected, the iOS 9.3 update was a major update for iOS 9 users bringing Night Shift, Verizon Wi-Fi Calling, improvements to apps, changes to 3D Touch, and more. The iOS 9.3 update was an exciting upgrade but it wasn’t perfect.


As the roll out picked up speed, we started to hear about iOS 9.3 plaguing iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users. This didn’t come as a surprise.

iOS updates, even iOS updates that go through extensive testing like iOS 9.3, always bring their own collection of problems. The iOS 9.3 beta wiped out a number of problems but some made it through to the final release.

Today we want to touch on the current state of iOS 9.3 problems for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch and provide you with the most important information you need to know.

This roundup includes a look at fixes for iOS 9.3 problems, the iOS 9.2.1 downgrade, the iOS 9.3.1 update that just rolled out to fix a serious iOS 9.3 issue, and iOS 9.3.1 problems.

iOS 9.3 Problems

iOS 9.3 users have been complaining about a number of issues including battery drain, issues finding the new Night Shift feature, issues with the vibration function, missing App Store, Wi-Fi problems, Bluetooth issues, activation problems, and more. (Several of these problems have carried over to iOS 9.3.1.)

These activation issues forced Apple to halt the iOS 9.3 update for older devices (iPhone 5s and below, iPad Air and below) while it fixed the problem. The new iOS 9.3 build started rolling out in late March with a fix on board.

If you ran into problems with iOS 9.3 activation problems, you’ll want to consult Apple’s support document as it comes with a fix.


These activation problems weren’t the only widespread iOS 9.3 issues. iPhone and iPad users also saw a pickup in app crashes when tapping on links inside Safari and other applications like Chrome, Messages and Mail.

Apple promised a fix for this problem and it delivered. The iOS 9.3.1 update is now available for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

iOS 9.3.1 Problems

Apple’s rolled out an iOS 9.3.1 update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. iOS 9.3.1 is a small update but it brings a fix for the iOS 9.3 link issue.

The iOS 9.3.1 change log notes that it “fixes an issue that caused apps to be unresponsive after tapping on links in Safari and other apps.” If you experienced this problem on iOS 9.3 or iOS 9.2.1, you’ll want to download
the iOS 9.3.1 update right now.

iOS 9.3.1 isn’t perfect either. Users are already reporting a number of problems with the new build including abnormal battery drain, Wi-Fi issues, Bluetooth problems, issues syncing with iTunes, erratic behavior, issues blocking contacts, and more.

This is precisely why we recommend taking a few steps to prepare yourself, and your device, for iOS 9.3.1. A little prep work will go a long way toward preventing problems.

We’ll update this when we see and hear more feedback about the iOS 9.3.1 update. It’s only a few days old at this point.

Where to Find Feedback About iOS 9.3 & iOS 9.3.1

It’s important for everyone, those who have already upgraded to iOS 9.3.1 and those who haven’t, to keep an eye on feedback about the update’s performance.

As we push away from the release date, you’ll want to dig for feedback about performance on your device, particularly if you’re coming from something older than iOS 9.2.1 (you can’t go back to anything else) and using an older device like the iPhone 5 or iPhone 4s.

So where will you find this feedback about iOS 9.3/iOS 9.3.1 performance and potential problems? Well, you can start here.

2016 iPad Air 3 Release Date - 6

We’ve put together some reasons to and not to install the iOS 9.3/iOS 9.3.1 update right now. If you’re on the fence, start there.

We’ve also started releasing our impressions of iOS 9.3 updates for popular devices. We’ve started with the iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 5s, and iPad.

If those aren’t enough, we recommend keeping an eye on YouTube, Apple’s discussion forums, and the MacRumors forums for additional feedback about the iOS 9.3 update.

This feedback will alert you to potential issues and also, potential benefits.

How to Fix iOS 9.3 or iOS 9.3.1 Problems

If you’ve run into an iOS 9.3 or iOS 9.3.1 problem, there’s no need to panic. There’s a good chance there’s a fix out there for your issue.

If an iOS 9.3 or iOS 9.3.1 problem pops up on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, start with our list of fixes for common iOS 9 problems.

Our list features fixes for the most common iOS 9 problems including abnormal battery drain, Wi-Fi issues, and problems with Bluetooth.

iOS 9.3 Update Details

If you can’t find a fix there, you should head on over to Apple’s discussion forums for iPhone, iPad, Apple Music, and more. There, you’ll find a library of fixes and a helpful community that can and will point you in the right direction.

If you can’t find a fix online, you can get in contact with Apple Support via Twitter or schedule an appointment to see a Genius at an Apple Store.

You Can Downgrade to iOS 9.3

If you run into a problem on iOS 9.3.1, you can downgrade to the iOS 9.3 update.

Apple is no longer signing off on the iOS 9.2.1 update but it is signing on iOS 9.3 which means you can drop back down to that update if you decide that iOS 9.3.1 isn’t to your liking.


Remember, Apple will, at some point, stop signing off on iOS 9.3 which will leave you stranded on iOS 9.3.1. This typically happens one to two weeks after an update’s release.

What’s Next

Apple has confirmed its next iOS release and it won’t be iOS 10 or iOS 9.4. Instead, the company is planning an iOS 9.3.2 bug fix update for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

Apple’s released iOS 9.3.2 into beta which means those of you willing to try early software can download
and install it right now.


According to its change log, it’s coming with bug fixes and improvements which should bode well for those dealing with iOS 9.3 or iOS 9.3.1 problems.

Thing is, we don’t have an iOS 9.3.2 release date. So if you encounter a problem with iOS 9.3 or iOS 9.3.1, you’re on your own. For now.

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 9.3.1 & 5 Reasons You Should

Install If You Use Your iPhone at Night & Want Better Sleep

1 / 9Install If You Use Your iPhone at Night & Want Better Sleep

One of iOS 9.3’s most impressive features is called Night Shift. If you’ve used f.lux, you’re familiar with this feature. If you aren’t, here’s what Night Shift is all about. 

iOS 9.3’s night mode feature changes the color temperature of your screen. Colors become warmer after sunset and they adjust back to cooler more natural colors in the morning. So what does this mean for average iOS users?

The bright blue light that comes from your screen at night can interrupt your circadian rhythms making it harder to fall asleep. With Night Shift enabled, your iPhone’s display will automatically adjust using your location and time of day. 

There’s a convenient way to disable Night Shift via the Control Center menu that you access swiping up from the bottom of the display. And if you use Low Power Mode, it will automatically disable Night Shift to help you conserve battery.

If you use your iPhone right before you go to bed, and you want to help improve your sleep, try iOS 9.3 and Night Shift to see if they help. We saw a noticeable improvement to our quality of sleep during our time with the iOS 9.3 beta. 

Note that Night Shift is only available for the iPhone 5s and higher. 

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