Five iOS bugs and annoyances Apple needs to fix in 2021

We're on iOS 14, but there's still plenty of work Apple could do to make it better come iOS 15.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

With every iOS update, I become increasingly convinced that the platform has outgrown Apple's ability to manage it.

It feels like Apple is more focused on new features than actually fixing and streamlining the platform, and there are aspects of the platform that have seen little to no love in years.

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1: Fix AirDrop

AirDrop is great when it works, but when it doesn't, it's a nightmare. It offers no way to diagnose what's going wrong, and I end up having to reboot everything and futz about with the network connections to get it working again.

The unreliability of AirDrop means that I normally work around it -- emailing things to myself usually -- to avoid having to get into a fight to make it work.

2: Let me mute specific apps

Some apps can be super noisy, either by design, or because they switch to noisy ads. This is jarring and can interrupt something else I'm listening to at the time.

Please give me a way to mute specific apps so that the apps that I want to listen to don't get swamped.

3: The Settings app

Apple keeps shoving more and more into this app, to the point where it has become the Windows Control Panel of iOS. It began life as a sleek, streamlined repository for important settings, but over time has become a hideously bloated mess that seems to be getting worse with every major iOS release.

Apple's decision to add a search box to the app was essentially a signal from the developers that they were waving the white flag and had given up on trying to restore order and make it usable once again.

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4: Get rid of the ads in the App Store app

If I search for the Facebook app, why is the top result TikTok? The answer is that TikTok paid for this top spot.

I detest this. It's user-unfriendly, bordering on deceptive, and it's a practice that I'm surprised that Apple condones. The top result should be what the user looked for, not what Apple got paid to show.

It's time to end this practice.

5: Get rid of app clutter

Apple doesn't make it easy to find out which apps you use and which you don't, and as a result, iOS becomes stuffed with a lot of legacy apps.

I'd like to see Apple highlight two different subset of the apps I have installed:

  • Apps that the developer hasn't updated in over a year
  • Apps that I haven't used in 3/6/12 months

Being able to highlight these would make decluttering a lot easier.

What are your biggest iOS (or Android) annoyances? Let me know.

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