iPhone 3G iOS 4.1: Does the iOS 4.1 Fare Better on the iPhone 3G?

By Jay Shah | Apple

When the iOS4 was launched along with the iPhone 4 there was a lot of hope surrounding the new operating system. However, for most iPhone 3G users, this hope soon turned to despair when they realized that the iOS 4 is slowing down their iPhone 3G. But now the latest iOS 4.1 promises to set things right.

When the problem was first noted, Apple quickly came out with a firmware 4.0.1 patch, but that did not change much and iPhone 3G owners still prefer not to update to iOS 4.0.1. After all, those who had adopted the iOS 4 with lots of enthusiasm almost had their phones rendered unusable!

Does Updating to iOS 4.1 fix the iPhone 3G issue?

Tests conducted with the new beta version of iOS4.1 reveal that the phone’s responsiveness has actually improved! Apps can be downloaded faster, text can be entered more smoothly and the phone does not slow down when you open multiple browser windows.

The problem was so acute that even when a second browser window was opened the iPhone 3G would almost come to a grinding halt. But now that could be a thing of the past.


This obviously makes you wonder whether the original iOS4 was actually tested on the iPhone 3G, because if it was, then why are the flaws being ironed out now? Even though the iOS4 did not give you full functionality on the 3G, it made the phone unusable at times.

So, was Apple actually making you go for an iPhone 4 by showing you what you were missing out on? That we will never know!

Thankfully something positive has been done now, in the form of the iOS 4.1 beta, but it will be better if this beta version is made available for commercial release soon. Downloading the beta version is risky proposition right now, because your phone may get bricked unless you are developer registered with Apple.

Quicker the 4.1 is pushed into the market the better it will be for Apple and thousands of iPhone 3G users. After all, Apple is already grappling with the antenna problems on the iPhone 4, which has taken shape as an unmitigated design and PR disaster.

About the Author

Jay simply loves any tech that can make life easier, better, faster and more enjoyable. And with hundreds if not thousands of Gadgets, Apps, Games being launched everyday, there's more than enough out there to keep this hardcore techie occupied and obsessed!

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(14) comments

festus November 16, 2010

I have a 3 GS 16G iPhone. After the 4.1 upgrade my phone started to reset sometimes when I’m on a call. I have not find a specific trend but while I’m talking to someone the phone just goes dead and the apple sign is there like it’s booting up again.
Any clue or help here please, it drives me nuts!

wro September 16, 2010

installed 0S4.1 on my iphone 3G yesterday and im very pleased with the new software. It responces fast and snappy.

Previously i went back from os4 to 3.1.3, now i can savely say that upgrading to OS4.1 is good to do.

    Vratko October 18, 2010

    it performs great indeed, I used ultrasnow to jailbrake but now I’m stucked on bb 05.14.02; any news when unlock will be ready? many thx in advance

    P.s.: I have an 8Gb 3G, iOS4.1 bb 05.14.02

zzz.sleeping September 2, 2010

@Nytroutbum, that’s why you backup SHSH blobs, even if you don’t jailbreak. Lol.

George September 1, 2010

I think im gonna stick with my jailbroken 3.1.2 on my iphone 3g. Works great, fast and app crashes is not even an issue. I will upgrade only if they stop supporting the 3.x software, something thats gonna happen sometime in the future(hope not in the near future though)

claudiu August 27, 2010

software engineers often say that there s more to an update than what is written in the changelog. that includes bugfixes and often speed optimizations. my 3gs got noticeably better battery life by upgrading to 4.0.1 and then 4.0.2

ipodgenius1x1 August 19, 2010

Ummm… Sorry to burst tour bubbles if your in 4.0.2. All it installs is a PDF patch. There is no way you could have had speed improvements due to the upgrade, maybe the hardware of your iPhone has became more familiar with ios 4. If you were to restore to 4.0/4.0.1 you would have the same results, maybe better. In no way what so ever does it up speed just a PDF patch to prevent jailbreakme website, you are being dillusional or my first point about the hardware is occuring, that is all.

Mark Peden August 13, 2010

I don’t know about 4.1 but I installed 4.0.2 yesterday (via Restore) and it is fantastic.

It has solved all of the “crock” of iOS 4 and 4.0.1.

In two days Safari has crashed only once and an app has crashed once — instead of Safari crashing every five minutes, every page-load taking over 30 seconds of screen freeze, and apps crashing or failing to load all the time.

Sent from my now-working-again iPhone


    Mark Peden August 15, 2010

    …erm, it’s starting to crash more and more…

    Maybe the solution is to re-install the iOS every day?!?

    …What a great user experience.

    SuwanneeJoe August 17, 2010

    The 4.0.2 upgrade appears to have improved performance significantly for my 3G as well as a friend’s 3GS.

SuwanneeJoe August 11, 2010

Great to hear about improvements of performance in IOD4.1 on iPhone 3G. I have had 4 and 4.01 installed on16GB white iPhone 3G since early July. I did a clean install, reset. While the phone is slower and needs improvement in performance, it is exaggerated to say it is unusable or made into a paperweight. I use my iPhone for voice and apps (exchange 2010 email, calendars, eBay, Safari, Loseit, Kindle, etc) regularly many times per day. App updates are about as fast as they ever were. Barrett life is about the same. So maybe it is not that Apple didn’t test on 3G, but that they tested on a clean install. This post was written on my iPhone. YMMV.

    Radius September 23, 2010

    That’s because yours is a 3GS…

Jamborf August 7, 2010

Sounds great.
Does anyone know if & when they are going to release it?
Don’t know how much longer I can put up with 4.0 on my 3G. May have to go back to 3.1.3 if it’s months away.

Nytroutbum August 5, 2010

I’ll believe it when I see it. What about all of the iPod touch problems? Check the discussion group at Apple. No company response whatsoever. There’ battery drain, overheating, wifi problems, app problems …….. And no downgrade pathway. If you essentially disable all useful features, there may be some improvement. But what’s the point?. I can find much cheaper paperweights. I’m also convinced that the extra charging and overheating is permanently damaging the battery. Apple, what are you going to do?

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