Apple’s pushed its iOS 14.2 update to the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus and the milestone upgrade could have a big impact on your phone’s performance.
The company’s decision to push iOS 14 to the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus came as a bit of a surprise given their age. The two phones were released all the way back in 2015.
Apple’s decision means iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus users now have another full year of software support to look forward to and that might convince some owners to skip the iPhone 12 series and hold onto their aging phone for another year or more.
The iPhone 6s’ iOS 14 update is a big one. The new operating system comes with a long list of changes including new features, under-the-hood improvements, and security patches.
Many users have already made the jump to iOS 14 which means we’re getting a lot of feedback about the software’s performance. So far, a lot of it is good, but we’ve also heard about various bugs and performance issues.
Apple’s addressed some of these issues in recent software updates and the latest, iOS 14.2, brings new features and important bug fixes to the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
If you decide to install iOS 14.2 on your iPhone, note that it requires a pretty large download if your device is currently running iOS 14.1.
If you’re running an older version of iOS on your iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus, your iOS 14.2 upgrade could be even larger because the features and fixes from iOS updates you skipped are baked in.
With that in mind, we want to take you through the most important things to know, right now, about the iPhone 6s’ iOS 14.2 update.
Our walkthrough will take you through the software’s initial problems, the downgrade status, the iOS 14 jailbreak, and the iPhone 6 iOS 14.2 update’s performance.
We’ll start with the software’s performance. We’ve been testing iOS 14.2 on the iPhone 6s update for a few days and here’s what we’ve learned.
iPhone 6s iOS 14.2 Impressions & Performance
iOS 14.2 is running well thus far. Animations and transitions are snappy and apps open up quickly. While the user interface would often lag on iOS 13, that hasn’t been the case on iOS 14.
We haven’t noticed any lag in problem areas like Control Center or Notification Center. That said, we have seen the occasional hangup when using the keyboard in Messages.
Battery life is currently stable. We haven’t seen any abnormal battery drain and that’s a really good sign as we push away from the release.
Our core applications, which include Slack, Asana, Spotify, Chrome, and Gmail, are all stable. Developers are still rolling out iOS 14 support updates so if you’re having issues with one of your apps, make sure you’re running the latest version.
As of right now, iOS 14.2 is running pretty smoothly on our phone. We haven’t run into any game-changing performance issues and we’ll let you know if that changes in the days ahead.
Right now we’re recommending iOS 14.2 to most iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus users. If you’re feeling leery, have a look at our reasons to, and not to, install iOS 14.2.
You Should Prepare for iOS 14.2
If you plan to install iOS 14.2 in the near future, make sure you prepare yourself, and the device, for the move.
While some of you might see a performance boost after moving up from iOS 13, iOS 14.0, iOS 14.0.1, or iOS 14.2, others will run into trouble. This is why it’s important to prepare.
If you don’t know where to start, we’ve released a pre-installation guide that will take you step-by-step through the process we typically use before we install new iOS software on our iPhones. If you’re new to the iPhone and iOS, or you just want to play it safe, it could help.
At the very least you’ll want to make sure all of your data is backed up before installing new firmware on your phone.
iPhone 6s iOS 14.2 Problems
We haven’t run into any major issues during our time on iOS 14.2, but many users have.
The current list of iOS 14 problems includes abnormal battery drain, UI lag, issues with first and third-party apps, Touch ID issues, touchscreen problems, Exchange issues, Wi-Fi issues, Bluetooth problems, and more.
This is only the beginning. You can expect the list to grow as more iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus users upgrade to the new software.
If you’re nervous about the current state of iOS 14 problems, you might want to hang back and wait for Apple’s next batch of bug fixes.
How to Fix iPhone 6s iOS 14.2 Problems
If you run into an issue on iOS 14.0, iOS 14.0.1, iOS 14.1, or iOS 14.2, you might be able to fix the problem(s) on your own.
If you don’t know where to look, our list of fixes for the most common iOS 14 problems is a great place to start.
If you start noticing horrendous battery life after the move to iOS 14, our tips should help you improve battery life going forward. And if you’re experiencing bad performance (lag, slow download speeds, etc), take a look at our guide to fixing bad iOS 14 performance.
iOS 14.1 Downgrade Open
If you move your iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus to iOS 14.2, and you run into bugs or performance issues, you can try downgrading your phone’s software.
Apple is currently signing on iOS 14.1 which means you can drop your iPhone’s software back to the previous version of iOS 14 in an attempt to improve its performance.
You can’t drop back to iOS 14.0.1, iOS 14.0 or iOS 13. That means those of you moving up from older versions of iOS need to approach iOS 14.2 with caution. Once you move, there’s no going back.
If you’re unfamiliar with the downgrade process, take a look at our guide.
iPhone 6s iOS 14.2 Update: What’s New
The iPhone 6s’ iOS 14.2 update brings a mix of new features, under-the-hood improvements, and security patches. Here’s the full change log:
- Over 100 new emoji, including animals, food, faces, household objects, musical instruments, gender-inclusive emoji, and more.
- Eight new wallpapers in both light and dark mode versions.
- Optimized battery charging for AirPods to slow the rate of battery aging by reducing the time your AirPods spends fully charged.
- Headphone audio level notifications to alert you when audio level could impact your hearing.
- New AirPlay controls to stream entertainment throughout your home.
- Intercom support with HomePod and HomePod mini using iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, AirPods, and CarPlay.
- Ability to connect HomePod to Apple TV 4K for stereo, surround sound, and Dolby Atmos audio.
- Option to provide statistics about Exposure Notifications, without identifying you, to participating Public Health Authorities.
- Addresses an issue where apps could be out of order on the Home Screen dock.
- Addresses an issue where the Camera viewfinder may appear black when launched.
- Addresses an issues where the keyboard on the Lock Screen could miss touches when trying to enter the passcode.
- Addresses an issue where Reminders could default to times in the past.
- Addresses an issue where the Photos widget may not display content.
- Addresses an issues where the Weather widget could display the high temperature in Celsius when set to Fahrenheit.
- Addresses an issue where the next-hour precipitation chart description in Weather could incorrectly indicate when precipitation stops.
- Addresses an issue where Voice Memos recordings are interrupted by incoming calls.
- Addresses an issue where the screen could be black during Netflix video playback.
- Addresses an issue where Apple Cash could fail to send or receive money when asked via Siri.
- Addresses an issue where the Apple Watch app may unexpectedly close when opened.
- Addresses an issue where workout GPS routes or Health data are prevented from syncing between Apple Watch and iPhone for some users.
- Addresses an issue where audio is incorrectly labeled as “Not Playing” in the CarPlay Dashboard.
- Addresses an issue where devices could be prevented from charging wirelessly.
- Addresses an issue where Exposure Notifications is disabled when restoring iPhone from iCloud Backup or transferring data to a new iPhone using iPhone Migration.
iOS 14.2 also includes 24 security updates and you can read more about those on Apple’s security page.
If you skipped iOS 14.1, you get its bug fixes with your upgrade to iOS 14.2. If you’re interested, you can read more them in our roundup.
If you’re moving up from iOS 14.0 you’ll get iOS 14.0.1’s bug fixes with your upgrade. Here’s what iOS 14.0.1 fixed:
- Fixed an issue that could cause default browser and mail settings to reset after restarting your iPhone
- Fixed an issue that could prevent your iPhone from connecting to Wi-Fi networks
- Resolved an issue that could prevent sending email with some mail providers
- Addressed an issue that could prevent images from appearing in the News widget
As for the operating system itself, the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus get a pretty stacked version of iOS 14. While the devices do miss out on a few features, the key features are all there.
Some of the highlights include Widgets on the home screen, improvements to Messages and Maps, the new Translate app, and a laundry list of changes to Siri.
We’ve put together a guide that will take you through some of iOS 14’s best features and it’s worth a look if you haven’t dug into the new operating system yet.
If you’re moving up from an older version of iOS 13 you’ll, again, get the features and fixes from the updates you skipped. We also have a guide that goes over the latest iOS 13 features and you should check it out if you’re running old software.
What’s Next for the iPhone 6s & iPhone 6s Plus
iOS 14.2 was the last known upgrade in Apple’s iOS pipeline which means it could be weeks before the company releases a new version for the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
We’ve heard chatter about an iOS 14.3 update coming later this year so there’s a chance we get a brand new beta in the near future.
Keep an eye out for new details as we push through November.
iPhone 6s iOS 14 Jailbreak
Developers have released an iOS 14 jailbreak tool that’s compatible with the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.
If you think you might want to jailbreak your iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus, you can learn more about it over on the official Checkra1n website.
Install iOS 14.2 for Better Security
If security is important to you, think about installing the iOS 14.2 update right away.
iOS 14.2 includes 24 security patches that will help protect you and your device from harm. You can learn more about the patches on Apple's security website.
If you're still running iOS 13, iOS 14.2 will also include iOS 14.0's security updates.
iOS 14.0 brought 11 new security patches to the iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.
If you skipped iOS 13.7 or any older versions of iOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your iOS 14.2 update.
In addition to those patches, iOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari.
For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.
With iOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them.
There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.
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