iOS 14 Feels Slow? Here’s Why & How to Speed It Up

Sep 25, 2020 - 13 Comments

iOS 14 Feels Slow? Here’s Why

Does your iPhone feel a little slower after updating to iOS 14 or iPadOS 14? Well, you’re not alone, as this seems to be an issue for a few days after every major iOS software update. Normally, updating your devices to iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 should make your iPhone or iPad feel snappier, but that might not necessarily be the case right away, particularly for older devices that support the update.

Therefore, if you’re one of those users facing sluggish performance after updating to iOS 14 or iPadOS 14, don’t worry. We’ll tell you exactly why this could happen and there are multiple reasons for the same.

We’ll be guiding you some tips that can help speed up your iPhone running iOS 14 or iPad with iPadOS 14 if it’s feeling sluggish with the latest updates.

Just Updated to iOS 14 or iPadOS 14 and feels slow? Patience!

After any major system software update, your iPhone or iPad will perform some background tasks for some time, which makes the device feel slower than usual. This is normal, so please be patient and give it a while. Let your iPhone or iPad be done with all the background activity and indexing to ensure smooth operation.

Leaving your iPhone or iPad plugged in and connected to the internet overnight is often an ideal thing to do, and if you have a ton of stuff on your device (tens of thousands of photos and videos, documents, etc) then even a few nights can be needed. The background tasks, indexing activity, and other housekeeping tasks should be done by the time you wake up, and the performance should no longer feel slow or sluggish.

Keep in mind that these tasks can drain the battery on your iPhone or iPad faster than usual too. But things should go back to normal once the background activity is complete.

The initial background activity that occurs after updating an iPhone or iPad to a new system software version is typically the number one reason a device ‘feels’ slow. Fortunately, it resolves itself over time, so just plug in your device at night and leave it be, and repeat a few nights in a row if necessary.

Install Any New Update if Available

Although you updated to iOS 14 recently, just make sure you have any additional hotfix updates available for your device. Apple usually tends to address stability issues and bugs with a subsequent update, so it’d be a good idea to install those.

To check for an available update, head over to Settings -> General -> Software Update and tap on “Download and Install” if any new software is available. Make sure to back up your device before updating.

iOS 14 Feels Slow? Here’s Why

For example, iOS 14.0.1 and iPadOS 14.0.1 were released just a few days after the primary release, and future versions are under active beta development as well. So periodically check for software updates, as they come you’ll want to install them for optimal performance.

Update Your Apps

If the apps installed on your iPhone aren’t functioning as smoothly after updating to iOS 14, it’s time to update all your apps. Some apps may have received optimization updates to work properly with iOS 14, so take some time to get your apps updated.

To do this, launch the App Store and tap on your Apple ID profile icon at the top-right corner of the screen. Now, scroll down and tap on “Update All” to install any available app updates.

iOS 14 Feels Slow? Here’s Why

Occasionally, app developers have not yet updated their apps to be fully compatible with the latest iOS or iPadOS release, and you’ll have to wait for the developer to update the app first. Emailing the app developer directly may help to give you an idea of when that may happen.

Disable Background App Activity

Apps running in the background on your iPhone or iPad can affect its overall performance if data is being constantly refreshed. Disabling Background App Refresh can certainly help speed up some iPhones and iPads, especially the older models.

To disable background activity, open Settings and go to General -> Background App Refresh and set it to OFF. This should make your iPhone or iPad feel a little snappier and alleviate any battery drain issues.

iOS 14 Feels Slow? Here’s Why

Turn on Reduce Motion

This could make a difference if you’re using an older iPhone or iPad model that supports iOS 14. Enabling the Reduce Motion feature on an iPhone or iPad can make the device feel faster by eliminating a lot of unnecessary animations that are used throughout the operating system. They may look nice visually, but they can come with a performance cost, thus disabling them can make the device feel faster.

To do this, launch Settings and go to General -> Accessibility -> Motion -> Reduce Motion and use the toggle to turn it on. You may notice the performance difference as you switch between apps.

iOS 14 Feels Slow? Here’s Why

Performance Issues with Mail App?

If the stock Mail app on your iPhone is slow to load new emails or just slow in general, you should try force quitting the app. Some users who reported this issue have managed to resolve it by either force closing the app or rebooting their devices.

Alternatively, you can choose to see only the unread emails in the Mail app which would drastically reduce the number of messages that show on the screen.

Not sure how to force close an app? You’ll need to access the App Switcher by slowly swiping up from the bottom of your screen if you’re using an iPhone with Face ID. On Touch ID enabled iPhones, you can do the same by double-clicking the home button. Once you’re in the app switcher, simply swipe up the Mail app to force close it.

iOS 14 Feels Slow? Here’s Why

Force Reboot Your iPhone

Oftentimes, many general performance issues, software-related bugs, and glitches can be resolved by force restarting your device. Keep in mind that a force reboot is different from a regular restart and requires a combination of key presses.

For iPhones with home buttons, you can force reboot by simply hold the power button and home button simultaneously until you see the Apple logo on the screen. For iPhones with Face ID, you can press the volume up button first, followed by the volume down button, and then hold the side/power button until you see the Apple logo.

Of course, we were primarily focusing on the iPhones in this article. However, if you own an iPad and if you’re facing sluggish performance after updating to iPadOS 14, you can try out these steps to fix it too.

We hope the above tips were helpful in resolving your iPhone’s performance issues after updating to iOS 14. Is your device operating smoother and faster than before? What’s your favorite new iOS 14 feature? Do share your valuable thoughts and experiences in the comments section down below.


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Posted by: Hamlin Rozario in iPad, iPhone, Tips & Tricks, Troubleshooting


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  1. Sam says:

    I have learned to not update my iOs when I have one that works.

    We celebrate Christ Jesus’s birth this season. He came to die to atone for/ pay for the sins of the world, those who repent of their sins & trust Christ Jesus as their Lord & Savior.

    “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

  2. Mia says:

    Updated with 14.2 on my iPhone 11 yesterday. Since then, internet browsing has slowed to a snails pace, whereas prior to the update, it was perfect. Do APPLE techs actually “TEST” these updates to ensure performance issues are addressed prior to pushing forth the update??? Or do they simply scum it up and send it out as is?? I’ve noticed a definite reduction in quality of updates since the loss of Steven Jobs.

  3. Claudia says:

    I have an older iPhone. It was working fine until about a week after the iOS update. My phone has been super slow all day today and an app wasn’t displaying a flyer. So I’m glad I found your article. I applied Reduce Motion and disabled Background Activity and it’s working well now! Now if you have a secret to prevent my phone from shutting off when it’s cold outdoors, please email me.

  4. P says:

    Hi dear, iOS is working well. However, apps tend to crash, hang or work very slowly on 4 different iOS devices. Certainly not a coincidence…

  5. Anthony Piner says:

    Thanks for this information. No problems with IOS 14 but found the update all for apps information very useful.

  6. Luis irizarry says:

    I am having a few issues with my iPhone when playing the games they frieze for a few seconds and then it disappeared to the home page and then I have too touch the app game again to being playing again and after a few more minutes it does it agin.

  7. Alan Coomber says:


    Since updating to iOS 14 the mail app refuses to display the bcc copy of any emails that I send. It just shows the following:-

    This message cannot be displayed because of the way it is formatted. Ask the sender to send it again using a different format or email program.

    I’ve tried rebooting etc and applied the update to 14.0.1 – do you have any suggestions?


  8. Zeke Collinson says:

    In iOS14.0.1, Accessibility is no longer under General. It’s Settings -> Accessibility -> Motion -> Reduce Motion and use the toggle to turn it on.

  9. LieJew says:

    For iPhones with home buttons, you can force reboot by simply hold the power button and home button simultaneously until you see the Apple logo on the screen..

    Holding the power and home button you’ll take a screenshot, but maybe this will fix your iPhone…

  10. Christopher Heckman says:

    That’s not my problem with iPadOS 14 … My iPad isn’t sending out a signal (and gets kicked off of Zoom if I share the screen and don’t do anything for a couple of minutes).

    This appears to be another problem, which a few dozen people have had.

  11. Bernard Leeds says:

    don’t need want any new features.
    just want it to be less hackable and possessed.
    new hover popups and telling me what I I am doing very annoying.

  12. John Galt says:

    Thank you for the info!

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