Problems Opening Files from iCloud in iOS 13.2

It’s fair to say that this year’s release of Apple’s operating systems has been a lot less comfortable than in the past. There are always bugs in operating systems, but there have been a number of serious bugs both on macOS and iOS that have led many seasoned Apple users to be very critical of these releases. Developer Marco Arment has notably been quite vocal about these issues:


It’s worth noting that the latest iOS 13.3 beta seems to fix the problem, mentioned above, where apps quit when in the background.

One such issue that has arisen since the release of iOS 13.2 is a situation where it is impossible to open files from iCloud. Here are three users discussing this on Twitter:

Ian Humm of Information Architects, developers of the iA Writer, the text editor I use for most of my writing, told me that he’s been getting a lot of support questions about this, since iA Writer stores files on iCloud Drive, by default. He said that restarting the iOS device where there are problems always fixes the issue, and that:

Reading through a sysdiagnose we received it appears that there isn’t actually a deadlock, but file reading fails with NSFileReadUnknownError.

I asked him if there was a commonality where all affected users has been running beta versions of iOS, as other developers had reported data loss early in the iOS 13 beta campaign, but he said that it is unlikely that all affected users were running iOS betas.

I have not seen this issue myself, but given that it seems fairly widespread, it’s worth highlighting. If you are experiencing this issue, get in touch with the developers of the apps where it’s happened, but it doesn’t look like it’s something they can fix. If anyone is running iOS 13.3 and has seen whether this issue is resolved or not, post a comment below.

4 thoughts on “Problems Opening Files from iCloud in iOS 13.2

  1. Regarding missing files and folders on iCloud Drive. I had it happened on my MacBook Pro after installing Catalina. What I did to bring them back was to disable iCloud Drive, wait for the drive to be completely disabled, then restart the system, re-enabled iCloud Drive and give a few minutes for the files and folders to repopulate Finder (it took 5-10 minutes for me).

    As to iA Writer. If you’ve at some point in the past ran the previous/original version of iA Writer, you might find a folder called iA Writer Classic. That’s probably where you’re iA Writer files have ended up. I just copy and move all the files to the iA Writer folder and maybe delete the Classic folder.

  2. I encountered the same bug while developing my app. I test on two iPads and it’s infuriating to have one work correctly while the other did not. Restarting the failing IPad worked for me.

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