The latest iOS 8.1.1 promises, among other fixes, to improve performance on older devices, such as the iPhone 4S and the iPad 2. Since we have an iPad 2 and an iPad 3 with iOS 8 in this household, I was eager to install the update and see for myself.
Back in September I wrote my initial impressions of iOS 8 on the iPad 2 and iPad 3, and concluded that, all in all, the experience wasn’t significantly different than iOS 7 on these devices. There was the occasional stutter, and sometimes the transitions in the interface were a bit slow, but nothing that made the update to iOS 8 an intolerable experience.
Things worked well under iOS 8.0 and 8.0.2. What I’ve failed to mention is that the update to iOS 8.1 wasn’t as smooth, and since updating to iOS 8.1 the stuttering and the slowness in transitions and animations were more pronounced. In particular, the transition from waking up the iPad and sliding on the lock screen to access the springboard had lost all its smoothness. At times the iPad seemed unusually stuck for a few seconds on the lock screen even after sliding to unlock, or the sliding was recognised but the lock screen simply budged a little. And entering the springboard was often jerky and the transition played like a video that keeps skipping frames. Same when exiting particularly resource-intensive apps.
I’m happy to report that, after updating both iPads to iOS 8.1.1, everything’s back to normal. Transitions and navigation are smooth once again. Swiping from screen to screen feels even smoother than under iOS 8.0 to 8.0.2. All the issues described in the previous paragraph are gone. Entering and exiting apps offers again a pleasant transition. Waking the iPad, sliding to unlock the lock screen, and entering the springboard — same story. My iPad 3 feels generally better and slightly more responsive. My wife’s iPad 2 feels less sluggish than under iOS 8.1. I’m really happy with this update, and if you own these devices and have experienced these issues, I do recommend you update to iOS 8.1.1 right away.