iPhone wallpaper goes black with iOS 16.1.1

Ever since I “updated” to iOS 16.1.1 on my iPhone 12, my wallpaper eventually disappears leaving me a totally black background. I can only get my wallpaper back by shutting down the phone for a few minutes then restarting it. Then I may go a while before it is lather, rinse, repeat. It seems to be associated to the phone sleeping. Has anyone had this problem, and if so, how did you fix it? BTW, I haven’t had the problem on my iPad Mini 6 with 16.1.1 so the bug must be only iPhone related.

That’s utterly weird, and I’ve never heard of that before. I can’t think of anything that would cause it, but it’s worth looking at what you have in Settings > Wallpaper.

One thing I can suggest is that it’s much easier to restart the iPhone by telling Siri, “Reboot.”

Does it return eventually? Do you have a fixed wallpaper or does it change depending on Lock Screen or focus? If the later, maybe not completely set up or it is getting to a photo that does not format correctly. Is there a setting for Focus that turns off the “distracting” background?

Ray, the lock screen wallpaper isn’t affected, only the home screen wallpaper (which is different from the lock screen). Both are the same that I set up on my first iPhone back in '07 and have retained on each new phone (3GS > 5 > 6 > 10 > 12). I wonder if the problem is that iOS 16.1.1 can’t handle older wallpaper well? I think I’ll try deleting the old wallpaper and replace it with something new.

Adam, as I understood it, using Siri doesn’t result in a complete shutdown being more akin to “Restart” in MacOS. Because of that, there may be “chaff” left behind which a hard shutdown and waiting 60 seconds before powering up allows to clear. Have I misunderstood the Siri “Reboot” process?

I honestly don’t know if there’s a significant difference, and it may not be possible to find out without asking an iOS engineer at Apple. iOS works very hard to retain state behind the scenes, so there may not be much practical difference between powering down and restarting.

Well, I deleted the old wallpaper then uploaded a new one and since then the problem hasn’t recurred. So it looks like iOS 16.1.1 doesn’t like wallpaper that is in use when the upgrade is installed. Also this time I used the same wallpaper for both the lock & home screens so I don’t know if the problem may have been related to having different wallpaper on the lock & home screens.