Why you can trust ZDNET : ZDNET independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.


iOS 15.3.1: A pleasant surprise after the chaos

iOS 15.3 was buggy. What does iOS 15.3.1 bring?
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

iOS updates are a rollercoaster of ups and downs. One moment you're languishing in an oasis of calm, the next thing you know, you're fighting with battery life issues and loads of bugs.

This is what iOS 15.3 was like. It was better than iOS 15.2 but worse than iOS 15.2.1.

So, when Apple pushed out iOS 15.3.1, I installed it rather gingerly. Because this contained a security patch for a serious and actively exploited vulnerability, it's not like I had much of a choice but to install it (unless I was feeling lucky, which I wasn't, to be honest).

The release notes mention a fix for a security vulnerability and an issue with Braille displays, so I wasn't hopeful of any other fixes.

Turns out I was wrong.

Also: Top iOS apps for iPhone power users 

I don't mind being wrong on some things.

As seems to have become the case with iOS updates, Apple rolls unspecified bug fixes into its updates now and doesn't bother to list them.

iOS 15.3.1 is like a breath of fresh air.    

Battery life is improved.

The app sluggishness is gone.

Even better, things that were previously fixed -- like the hotspot being twitchy and Bluetooth being unreliable -- haven't been rebroken.

That's quite a surprise because it's felt like Apple has been playing whack-a-mole with these bugs for a few updates now. Sometimes these bugs are there; other times, they're gone.

Maybe they're finally gone for good.

Battery life is noticeably improved with this update. Either that, or this improvement is down to an updated app (which I don't think it is, but it's hard to rule it out).

So, if you've not installed this update yet, I strongly suggest you do. It contains a very serious security path and, as it turns out, some much-needed bug fixes.

Got a problem with iOS 15.3.1? Let me know in the comments below.

Editorial standards