iPhone or iPad freezing when you delete apps? Here's the work-around!

Literally nothing. Everything just freezes up and seems to hang for a while. Eventually the confirm delete dialog box pops up, but it takes way longer than it should. Instead of letting you quickly delete an app and get on with using your device, it just feels like everything is locked up and you're stuck. If you're experiencing this problem on iOS 8 here's the good news — there is a workaround, and we're tacking it on this week's iOS Help.

Ever since I've been using iOS 8, my iPhone freezes up when I try to delete an app. I can't do anything when this happens other than wait an excruciatingly long time for the delete option to finally pop up. Why is this happening and how do I fix it?

Not everyone seems to experience this issue but those that do seem to typically have the following things in common: Those who experience hanging typically have the following things in common:

  • Lots of apps installed on your iPhone or iPad (200+)
  • Lots of apps running in the background
  • iOS 8.0 or higher

Luckily, there is a way to stop the freezing issue from happening, at least until Apple issues a permanent fix.

How to stop your iPhone or iPad from freezing when deleting apps

This issue seems to result from a way iOS handles memory. Closing all open apps from the multitasking section of iOS before trying to delete an app solves the problem. If you don't know how to do that, just follow these steps:

  1. Double tap your Home button on your iPhone or iPad to bring up multitasking.
  2. Swipe all open apps up in order to close them.
  3. You can touch and throw away up to three apps at once to save time

Once all the apps have been closed, try deleting an app again. The freezing should be gone.

Why does my iPhone or iPad freeze when I delete apps?

Special thanks to Ratkat on Twitter for pointing out this workaround!

iMore senior editor from 2011 to 2015.

5 Comments
  • I would say that this method is not really the best to close all apps. The multitasking overview shows the last opened apps and not apps that are still open. It is a history of app starts and not a task manager. So you end up flipping maybe hundreds of apps in this list although only one of these apps is actually really open in the background.
    Better and faster is the "kill all apps" method:
    1. Go to the home screen.
    2. Press and hold the on/off button until the "turn off" slider appears then release it.
    3. Press and hold the home button until the home screen appears again.
    Now all background apps are closed. Note: Nothing will be changed in the multitasking overview because this is not a list of open apps!
  • Thanks for that tip!
  • Great point.
  • Another option is going to:
    Settings>General>Usage>Manage Storage And delete the apps as needed after they populate. Sent from the iMore App
  • Am back on speaking terms with my wife, thank you jakeless.123