iOS 9.3 Web Link Bug Crash Apps

The latest version of the Apple operating system, iOS 9.3, continues to cause problems for users.

Apple usually rolls out major iOS upgrades in September, but last week decided to release iOS 9.3 ahead of schedule. However since its release the new operating system has been dogged by problems.

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iOS 9.3 promised a lot but has some serious problems

Mid-year updates tend to focus on security enhancements and bug fixes, but Apple has brought a number of important new features to iOS 9.3. Among their number is Night Shift and the ability to lock Notes using Touch ID.

Before launch developers were shown 7 different beta versions of the new operating system. However over the course of testing Apple apparently missed a fairly major bug that has been affecting those users that have upgraded to iOS 9.3 in the last few days.

A quick look at the Apple support forums reveals a flood of users complaining about various bugs. One of the most important is the problem with opening web links.

Both iPads and iPhones affected by bugs

Users have complained that after updating to iOS 9.3 they have effectively been left unable to click on and open web links. Others have also reported that apps have been crashing when they try to open web links.

It looks as though the problems are affecting both iPhones and iPads. While some users report that the problem only affects links opened in a new tab, others say that the app crashes every time they click on a link. That link could be within Safari, embedded in Messages, Mail or any third-party app.

As one complaint reads: “I am having the same issue with the iOS 9.3 upgrade to my iPhone 6 Plus and iPad Air 2. Can not open web links within Safari. It just freezes on both devices. Any third party apps using Safari to open links or web pages freezes as well.”

Disabling javascript appears to help in some cases, although not for everyone. Some other users report that using Google Chrome to surf the web can help, although the system still freezes when opening links from Messages and Mail apps.

Apple scrambling to find a fix for the issues

According to one commenter on the discussion forum, the issue will now be referred to Apple’s top engineers in order to find a solution quickly. A huge number of complaints have also been received on the new Apple Support Twitter account.

Among the positives if iOS 9.3 are support for Dolby Digital Plus and AT&T international calls. However the negatives such as the lack of ability to open links, app crashes and bricked devices appear to outweigh the positives as things stand.

It looks as though it is wiser to refrain from updating just yet until Apple can come up with a solution to the evident problems. As we outlined last week, that is particular true for those with an interest in jailbreaking their phones.

There is no sign of a jailbreak for the latest version of iOS, so it’s best to wait. For normal users it may also be best to wait, although there are certain safety precautions that you should take.

If you are still on the older iOS, try to avoid connecting to unprotected public WiFi networks. One of the major benefits is the update is improved security against malware, and the older version is still vulnerable.