iOS 14 resets default email and browser when apps update

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iOS 14.0.1
Make Gmail your iOS 14 default email app and it still won‘t stick.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Another significant bug has been found in iOS 14’s ability to change the default web browser and email applications. If third-party apps are chosen, they’ll stop being the defaults when an new version is installed.

The same problem apparently affects tablets running iPadOS 14.

This is the discovery of Twitter user David Clarke. He noted on Wednesday that, “It seems that every time an email or browser app is updated on iOS 14, it resets the default settings.” A follow up message says “Same bug exists in 14.1 as well.”

This problem has been confirmed by other sources.

The bug likely came to light because updates for both the Gmail app and DuckDuckGo browser  were released on Wednesday. Anyone who set these to their default email or web browser (respectively) and then installed the new versions would have noticed that their iPhone reverted to Apple Mail or Safari.

A fix is already on the way, though. It’s reportedly repaired in the beta of iOS 14.2, and Cult of Mac can confirm that iPadOS 14.2 beta 4 doesn’t have this bug either.

Picking a new iOS 14 default email app and browser

This isn’t the first problem to crop up in iOS’s ability to change the default web browser and email app. Earlier, the change wouldn’t stick when the iPhone was reset. iOS 14.0.1 and an iPad equivalent were released to remove this bug.

Anyone just learning this is even possible should read Cult of Mac’s guides to How to change the iOS 14 or iPadOS 14 default email application and How to change the iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 default web browser.