How to fix delayed touchscreen response problem on your iPhone 5s

Delayed touchscreen response or sluggishness is usually listed among the symptoms of performance problems in mobile devices. These symptoms are often tied to insufficient memory, data corruption, system crashes, bad updates, malware and stubborn bugs. In worse cases, a sluggish performance can also be an indication of hardware damage on the phone. Even so, it is still highly recommended to eliminate software-related factors that might have slowed down system functions and thereby results in delayed touchscreen response problem. Highlighted below are generic procedures that are often used to resolve the same issue on delayed touchscreen response on the Apple iPhone 5s smartphone. Read on for more information.

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Troubleshooting a sluggish iPhone 5s, delayed touchscreen response

While most cases of sluggish performance in earlier devices are tied to hardware issues, there is still a higher chance for you to speed up your sluggish iPhone 5s and deal with its delayed touchscreen response by performing these handy tweaks, especially if software-related factors are to blame. Try these simple workarounds before rushing to a service center.

First solution: Clear all background apps.

Keeping apps suspended or running in the background can benefit in terms of multitasking. However, keeping more and more apps in this state may also cause some problems, especially when any of them crashes or becomes corrupted. Thus, it’s recommended to end background apps from time to time. If you haven’t already, then just follow these steps to clear all background apps on your iPhone 5s:

  1. Double press the Home key to launch the recent apps screen. On this screen, you will see the previews of the apps you’ve recently used but not closed.
  2. Swipe up on each app card/preview to close or end individual apps.

Use your phone as you normally do after clearing all background apps to see how it performs. If you still experience delayed touchscreen responses, then move on to the next possible solution.

Second solution: Reboot your iPhone (soft reset or force restart).

Rogue apps and random firmware crashes can also slow down your phone. This is usually what happens if you’ve been using your device for long and haven’t rebooted it yet. If this is the case, performing a soft reset will likely fix the problem. Doing so will likewise clear out caches including corrupted temporary files that adversely affect other apps and system functions of your phone. To soft reset your iPhone 5s, just refer to these steps:

  1. Press and  hold the Power (Sleep/Wake) button on the top of the phone for a few seconds.
  2. Release the button when the Power Off slider appears. The iPhone will then shut down.
  3. After a few seconds, press and hold the Power (Sleep/Wake) button until the Apple logo appears and then release the button.

In the case where your iPhone is responding very slowly to the point that it somehow gets stuck, performing a forced restart would be necessary. This is a simulated battery remove procedure that is used to forcibly shutdown and reboot a frozen iPhone. Similar to a soft reset, a forced restart doesn’t affect any saved data on the phone’s internal memory so there’s no worries of losing important files in the process. Just go ahead and follow these steps when ready:

  1. Press and hold the Home button and the Sleep/Wake button simultaneously for about 10 seconds.
  2. Release both buttons when the Apple logo appears.

Allow your phone to finish the boot sequence and use it as usual afterwards.

ALSO READ: How to fix iPhone 5s slow browsing problem, very slow Internet connection


Third solution: Manage iPhone storage to fix delayed touchscreen response.

As mentioned earlier, memory issues particularly low or insufficient memory on the phone can also trigger the occurrence of delayed touchscreen response symptoms. This is very likely to happen considering that you’ve been using the phone for several years now. You probably have had downloaded several apps and files, thus it’s possible that the memory is totally used up. In this case, memory management is needed. Just follow these steps to get started:

  1. Open the Settings app from your Home screen.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Then tap Storage & iCloud Usage.
  4. Navigate to the Storage section then tap Manage Storage.

If the available storage is less than a gigabyte, that denotes the need for you to free up some space. You can delete old and unwanted files, messages, and apps from your device. 

If the problem started after installing a new app, try deleting the suspected app too.

Fourth solution: Update apps and iOS to the latest version available.

Updates can also save your iPhone from becoming very sluggish. Aside from adding new features, software updates also contain security enhancements to maintain and ensure optimum system performance. That being said, try to check for any pending updates to install for your apps and iOS. To check for pending app updates, just follow these steps:

  1. Tap to open the App Store from your Home screen.
  2. From the App Store screen, scroll down to the bottom then tap the Updates tab. Doing so will open a new screen containing a list of apps with pending updates.
  3. To update individual apps, tap the Update button next to the name of an app.
  4. To update all apps at once, tap the Update All button on the upper-right side.

To check for iOS update, refer to these steps instead:

  1. Tap Settings from your Home screen.
  2. Scroll to and tap General.
  3. Tap Software Update.

If an update is available, a notification containing the details and key features embedded into that update will appear. Just follow the onscreen prompts to start downloading and installing the update on your iPhone. Also ensure that your phone has a stable Internet connection and sufficient battery life to complete the update.

Restart the phone after updating to implement the recent system changes and to clear and refresh your phone’s internal memory and system functions.

ALSO READ: How to fix an iPhone 5 that’s stuck on white Apple logo


Fifth solution: Reset all settings on your iPhone.

Incorrect settings or invalid customization on the phone can also cause conflicts and adversely affect the phone’s normal operations. If you started experiencing delayed touchscreen response after modifying some settings or installing new updates, then you can revert to the default or original configuration. Here’s how:

  1. From the Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Scroll to and tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Reset all settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode if prompted.
  6. Then tap to confirm that you want to reset all settings on your iPhone.

Wait until the reset is finished and your phone to restart automatically. After the reset, you will need to re-enable necessary features, particularly those that are disabled by default, so you can use them again on your phone.

Sixth solution: Erase your iPhone and restore default settings (factory reset).

Your last option would be a full system reset/factory reset and iOS restore. This are deemed among the advanced solutions that are used to deal with complex system errors that could not be dealt with by the basic solutions. The main downside from this reset however, is permanent data loss. Thus, creating backups is recommended beforehand. If you wish to proceed, follow these steps to erase your iPhone 5s and restore factory defaults through settings:

  1. From the Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Select Reset.
  4. Tap Erase all content and settings from the given options.
  5. If prompted, enter your passcode to continue.
  6. Then tap to confirm that you want to erase your iPhone and restore factory defaults.

Restoring your iPhone from a previous iOS backup is also an option and a potential solution if the problem is attributed to some faulty updates. This will require the use of a computer that has the latest version of iTunes software in it. That computer must also contain the iOS backup file for you to restore from. If all these requirements are met, you can proceed and start restoring your iPhone 5s in iTunes with these steps: 

  1. Open iTunes on the computer to get started. Be sure to use the latest version of iTunes app.
  2. Then connect your iPhone to the computer using the Apple-supplied USB cable/Lightning.
  3. Wait for iTunes to recognize your iPhone and starts syncing.
  4. Select your iPhone when it appears in iTunes.
  5. Click the button to Restore Backup.
  6. Locate the iOS backup file that you want to restore your iPhone from.
  7. Then click Restore.

Follow the rest of the onscreen prompts to complete the restore process. Do not disconnect your computer until the entire system restore is finished. 

ALSO READ: How to fix an iPhone 5c that’s overheating and slowing down


Still experiencing delayed touchscreen response on your iPhone 5s?

If none of the given solutions is able to fix the problem, then you’ve got to move and rule out hardware issues next. And this is when you should consider taking a trip to the nearest Apple Genius bar for a tech visit. It isn’t impossible for your iPhone to obtain some sort of physical or liquid damage given the number of years that it’s been used. The delayed touchscreen response could also be a symptom of wear and tear. And thus, getting an upgrade can also be deemed an option, especially if the iPhone’s repair fee is too hefty. Talk to your carrier about upgrading to later iPhone models that would best suit your needs.

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