SpaceX Crew Dragon ran into an issue with an iPad Mini in space

Ipad Spacex
Ipad Spacex (Image credit: SpaceX)

What you need to know

  • The SpaceX Crew Dragon team experienced issues with an iPad.
  • Astronaut Bob Behnken was having an issue with the custom SpaceX app.
  • It turned out to be a caching issue solved through AirDrop.

SpaceX's Crew Dragon completed its mission over the weekend, but not without a bug affecting one of the iPads on board.

Reported by Space Explored, NASA astronaut Bob Behnken came across the issue, which SpaceX Crew Operations and Resources Engineer Anne Menon took up to troubleshoot. Behnken said he was experiencing an issue with the custom SpaceX application on his iPad Mini.

"A timeline application on my tablet, uh, gives me a error message that says Safari cannot open the page, and then it's got a HTML address because your iPad is not connected to the internet," Behnken reported. "Can you confirm that Wi-Fi is off and AirPlane Mode is on," asked Menon. Then the NASA astronaut improvised with a go-to troubleshooting step.

After troubleshooting, it was apparently determined to be a caching issue with the app. In order to fix the issue, the team had astronaut Doug Hurley take screenshots from his iPad and AirDrop them to Bob's iPad.

The issue with updating the digital timeline app was later determined to mostly likely be caused by a caching issue when saving an update. SpaceX eventually requested that astronaut Doug Hurley take screenshots of his day timeline as a backup in case his app experienced the same caching issue. Then each astronaut was instructed to briefly turn on wifi to enable the iPad's AirDrop feature for wirelessly sending the screenshots between iPads.

According to the team, the documents in question were also stored in Adobe Acrobat for iPad as well, so the issue was not a large one. It will, however, be something that needs to be fixed before the next crew launches.

You can watch the exchange between the crew below (it starts at around 4 hours and 16 minutes):

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.